Case Results

$1 Million Settlement in a Will Contest. Successfully obtained a $1 million settlement for our client by attacking on two fronts, in a will contest and a challenge to a bank account name change. The client’s brother died leaving his entire estate to his neighbor. The will was not easy to challenge at first, as there was a prior guardianship proceeding over the brother where a court evaluator deemed the brother mentally fit and was of the opinion that the brother was upset with the client. Things got better when the attorney who drafted the Will admitted in examination under oath that the neighbor was an acquaintance of the attorney’s husband’s and the neighbor arranged the appointment and drove the brother to the attorney, whose office was in a different borough than where the brother resided. It also became apparent that the neighbor was exerting a tremendous amount of influence over the brother and was essentially in charge of his finances. We then found a large bank account had our client’s name but her name was later removed with only the brother’s name remaining. We brought a lawsuit to challenge the removal of her name as fraudulent. With the combination of the will challenge and the bank account name change challenge, we were able to secure a $1 million settlement for our client.

$1.2 Million Settlement for Estate’s Share of a Company. The person who died was a partner in a company, and the company’s management claimed that the deceased person’s interest was essentially worthless. Working with experts in business valuation, we threatened to force the dissolution of the company and got the management to buy out the estate’s share for $1.2 million.

$2 Million in a Spousal Elective Share Case. The executor who is the son of the deceased from the first marriage claimed that any money he received from his father is not a part of the estate and that the father’s widow is not entitled to the funds. We utilized the law that any money transferred within a year before death is a part of the augmented estate for the purposes of calculating the elective share, and agreed on a $2 Million settlement for the widow.

$1.25 Million for a Client’s Share of a Company. The client was being oppressed as a shareholder of a company that was left by her parent. We forced her brother to buy out her share.

$840,000 Share Increase in a Will Contest Settlement. The decedent’s daughter was left 12.5% of a $3.5 Million estate by a her father’s purported will. Our firm pointed out to irregularities in the will and possible issues in the decedent’s capacity to make a will, and negotiated an increase of her share to 37%.

$650,000 Debt Recovered for Secured Debt. Client let her friend $600,000, secured by the friend’s house. We foreclosed on the house and had the friend sell the house and return the money to our client.

$500,000 Settlement in a Purported Father-Son Kinship Case. The client’s purported father did not have any relationship with our client. He died without ever meeting the client. Heard about him once. The case settled after our law firm’s warning that we had the capacity to obtain DNA samples from the office of Chief Medical Examiner.

$500,000 Will Contest Defense. The client’s husband died while overseas. The client and her husband lived in different states for some time. The deceased husband’s sister challenged the client, saying that she and the husband were estranged and their marriage was no longer valid. After our persuasive advocacy, the sister relented and gave up her challenge, with our client not paying a penny in a settlement.

$700,000 Will Contest Defense. The client’s brother was left out of the Will, brought a will contest. In one of the emails from our client, we noticed something was different in the way she was referring to her brother. We asked more questions, and it turned out that both of them were adopted. Upon further investigation, it turned out that the brother was never formally adopted, and as such, had no standing to challenge the will.

$200,000 for a Joint Bank Account. Client’s grandfather died, his uncle claimed that he got the entire estate outside of probate, through joint bank accounts. Bank account statements stated that the uncle was a joint tenant with a right of survivorship to the accounts. The grandfather’s capacity was not at issue. Our claim was that it was a convenience account.

$161,000 Plus Attorneys Fees for Debt to an Estate. $100,000 was borrowed from an estate. Although the debtor eventually repaid that amount, we successfully argued that the payments went to interest. We secured a judgment for $161,000 in damages and $17,369 in attorneys’ fees. We have successfully defended the appeal in the United States Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit.

$100,000 Will Contest Settlement. Settlement for a niece and nephew who were left out of their aunt’s will.

 $3,000 / Month Trust Distributions For Someone Who Was Getting $0. For decades, our client did not receive any income from a trust for his benefit, and did not even know how large his trust is. Upon our lawsuit, the trustees brought an accounting of the trust and agreed to provide a substantial monthly distribution to our client.

$43,000 in Annuity Distribution. The client’s mother changed her annuity beneficiary to the client’s brother. Due to defects found in the new beneficiary change, we were able to settle and get half of the annuity for our client.

$20,000 Lifetime Gift Protected. The client’s friend gave her $30K during her lifetime, told her to pay for her funeral and keep the rest. The client’s estate demanded that she give the remainder of the money to the estate instead. After depositions of the client, the estate gave up its claim.

$155,000 – Forced a Sale of Estate Property That Was Not Sold for Two Years. Instead of selling the estate’s commercial property, the executor of the estate was collecting the rent, which was substantial. We forced the executor to sell the property and distribute the proceeds to the beneficiaries of the decedent’s will.

$130,000 Medicaid Lien Removed. When our client tried to sell her house, she found out that she has a substantial Medicaid lien for the care of her mother who was the owner of the house before she died. We found an exemption as to why the lien should be removed, wrote a letter to Medicaid, and the lien was removed.

$122,000 for Grandchildren Adopted by Grandmother but Not in the Will.  Decedent’s grandchildren adopted as her children, after the making of the will that did not include them. Used New York’s “unborn children” statute to secure a share of the inheritance.

No Jail and Settled a $40,000 restitution for $8,000. Client was accused of Medicaid fraud and was expected to pay back $40,000 in restitution. Settled the case for $8,000 and no criminal prosecution.

$30,000 Half of Annuity Recovered. Our client’s deceased mother left an annuity to one sister as a beneficiary. After our involvement, the sister signed over half of the annuity to our client.

A client with a $700,000 Personal Injury Settlement Getting Medicaid. Obtained a court order whereby our client’s medical malpractice settlement funds were placed in a Special Needs Trust, preserving her eligibility for Medicaid.

$500,000 Share of a House Secured by Canceling a Fraudulent Deed. Our client owned a house together with his mother. Shortly after her death, he found that a Deed was filed where he supposedly signed his share of the house away. Our client claimed that he never signed the Deed, his brothers claimed that he did. We also found that one of the brothers was a witness to the deed and that the brother who supposedly represented the estate was never appointed by the court to do so. We went to court, and the Deed was canceled.

Attorney Albert Goodwin

Law Offices of
Albert Goodwin, PLLC
31 W 34 Str, Suite 7058
New York, NY 10001

Tel. 212-233-1233

[email protected]

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