As our everyday life continues to be impacted by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed various executive orders to address the issues faced by the State and its residents during these unprecedented times.  In light of the executive orders that have been issued, the resulting closure of non-essential businesses, the quarantine orders

A recent decision of the Richmond County Surrogate’s Court addressed a frequently litigated issue in Surrogate’s Court litigation – – whether the proposed or nominated fiduciary should be disqualified from serving in a fiduciary capacity on the grounds of “dishonesty” or “improvidence.” In the Estate of George Mathai a familiar dynamic was in play –

In Matter of Brigati, Surrogate Czygier of Suffolk County addressed an application to reform the decedent’s life insurance trust, which contained a significant amount of insurance. The instrument contained a number of terms which could cause inclusion in the decedent’s gross estate. Among other things, it provided that upon the death of the Grantor, the life insurance

In a recent Westchester County decision, the court enforced the terms of a prenuptial agreement providing that the decedent was to leave trusts for the benefit of his children despite some unusual circumstances. Jack Barnosky discusses the case in our latest entry.
Continue Reading Provision in Pre-Nuptial Agreement to Create Trust for Children is Enforceable

Readers may recall Eric Penzer’s previous entries regarding Leona Helmsley’s charitable trust in which she expressed a desire that its millions of dollars be used for the care and welfare of dogs. This week he addresses the New York County Surrogate’s Court’s latest decision on the issue, after animal welfare charities sought to intervene in the proceeding and vacate a prior determination that the trust assets could be distributed to any charities as the executors saw fit.
Continue Reading Surrogate: Dog Groups Barking Up The Wrong Tree

As explained by Jaclene D’Agostino in our previous entry, constructive trusts may be imposed in a variety of circumstances. However, there are numerous situations in which courts have rejected the imposition of that remedy. One such example is the case of Dext v. Rorech III, Individually and as Executor of the Estate of William Rorech, Jr., recently emanating from Suffolk County Surrogate’s Court. Ilene Cooper discusses the case in this week’s entry.
Continue Reading Lessons of Constructive Trusts Continued