Hearing delayed in Zsa Zsa Gabor case (CA)

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A hearing scheduled today on a petition by Zsa Zsa Gabor’s daughter, who wants a judge to appoint her or another suitable person as conservator to oversee her mother’s affairs, was delayed today after attorneys said they will try to settle the case.

Constance Francesca Gabor Hilton filed her petition March 20 in Los Angeles Superior Court after learning her 95-year-old mother’s home was in default over missed mortgage payments and that Gabor’s husband, Frederic von Anhalt, recently obtained a six-figure loan against Gabor’s equity in the property, according to a statement issued on behalf of Hilton’s attorney.

The lawyers plan to meet with a retired judge to see if they can resolve the issues, so Judge Reva Goetz postponed today’s hearing until July 11.

Hilton’s lawyer, Kenneth Kossoff, was cautiously optimistic.

“Miracles happen in mediation,” he said.

Key areas of dispute include the ability of Hilton and her mother’s friends to visit the aging starlet without interference by von Anhalt, as well as Gabor’s financial protection, Kossoff said.

In a capacity declaration document submitted by Kossoff last week, Dr. Debra Judelson gave an evaluation of Gabor’s current health.

Judelson wrote that Gabor is “bedbound, unable to hear or see clearly, unable to respond or answer questions, becomes agitated when outside of familiar environment.”

Judelson also stated that Gabor is “calmer in familiar home environment with familiar people, agitated in hospital setting. Recognizes husband by voice/hand squeeze and able to be calmed by him.”

Von Anhalt was not present in court today, but Hilton did attend the hearing. In a previously submitted sworn statement, she said her mother’s spouse has thrown up a wall between her and her mother.

“My mother’s husband has increasingly isolated my mother from me and from others who have long been close to her,” Hilton said in a sworn statement. “Before she broke her hip, my mother and I spoke several times every day. Since she broke her hip, her husband has removed the telephone that used to be by her bed.”

But in his court papers, attorney William Remery, on behalf of the 68- year-old von Anhalt, said his client has “managed (Gabor’s) finances prudently while under significant financial straits created in large part by (Hilton’s) own abuse of power of attorney given to her by (her mother).”

By her past conduct, Hilton has shown she is “unsuitable as a conservator,” Remery’s court papers allege.

Remery further states that should a judge believe a conservatorship is necessary for Gabor, von Anhalt is “entitled to priority for consideration” and would file his own petition for appointment.

In her statement, Hilton claims she was alarmed during visits on Nov. 27 and Feb. 8, saying her mother “seemed heavily sedated” and had remnants from bed sores. A makeup artist who prepared Gabor for her 95th birthday party Feb. 6 saw lesions on the woman’s face, according to Hilton.

Until she was heavily sedated, Gabor did not allow her husband access to her funds because of a pre-marital agreement, Hilton said. However, Gabor now has allowed him to obtain a $700,000 loan against the home, according to Hilton.

Hilton said she wants an independent medical evaluation of whether her mother should continue to be confined to bed. A hearing on her petition and von Anhalt’s objections is scheduled May 2 before Judge Reva Goetz.

Gabor’s real estate holdings are worth more than $10.6 million, according to her daughter’s petition.

Gabor’s right leg was amputated a year ago because of gangrene. After she broke her hip in July 2011, the Hilton-Von Anhalt relationship appeared to deteriorate.

Kossoff said that “in spite of her conflicts with von Anhalt, Francesca has been hoping he had Zsa Zsa’s interests at heart.”

“However, having just recently learned that he took out a $700,000 loan, and that there was a notice of default recorded against the property in late February 2012 because he apparently has not been paying Zsa Zsa’s mortgage payment, it became clear to Francesca that if she did not seek to protect her mother, no one else would.”

He said Hilton has been waiting for more than a year to receive medical evaluations about her mother and financial documents from Von Anhalt showing he is capable of caring for Gabor, but he has refused to comply.

Hilton, daughter of hotelier Conrad Hilton, is Gabor’s only child.

Attribution:

Hearing Delayed in Zsa Zsa Gabor Case
CNS
May 2, 2012
Beverly Hills Courier
http://www.bhcourier.com/article/Local/Local/Hearing_Delayed_in_Zsa_Zsa_Gabor_Case/87737

Additional coverage:

Zsa Zsa Gabor’s husband and daughter to appear in court: Judge to consider oversight of ailing actress’ finances and medical care
Gabor, who has been in poor health for months, will not attend the hearing
Associated Press
May 2, 2012
New York Daily New
http://www.nydailynews.com/gossip/zsa-zsa-gabor-husband-daughter-court-judge-oversight-ailing-actress-finances-medical-care-article-1.1071234#ixzz1tlAAUrkX

LOS ANGELES — Attorneys for Zsa Zsa Gabor’s daughter and husband are scheduled to appear for the first time before a judge who is considering whether the ailing actress needs independent oversight of her finances and medical care.

Wednesday’s hearing is the first time attorneys for the two sides will argue their case before Superior Court Judge Reva Goetz, who is being asked by Gabor’s daughter to impose a conservatorship.

Constance Francesca Hilton petitioned to be named her mother’s conservator in March, but Gabor’s husband Frederic von Anhalt wants the request denied. An independent attorney has already logged at least 89 hours evaluating the case to provide Goetz with information for her ruling.

Hilton claims von Anhalt is keeping her mother heavily sedated and may be mismanaging her money, accusations that Gabor’s husband of 25 years vehemently denies. In a court filing, he claims that Hilton has created financial problems for Gabor in the past and that he is providing the best possible care.

Gabor, who is confined to her bed and has been in poor health for months, will not attend the hearing.

A doctor who has evaluated her wrote in a court filing that Gabor’s well-being is closely tied to her remaining in a familiar environment.

“Continued access to familiar persons and environment are crucial to her comfort and maintenance of her continued health,” Dr. Debra Judelson wrote in a report submitted last month.

“She is aware of her own bedroom and is calm and well cared for by husband with assistance of two aides,” Judelson wrote.

Hilton, who is seeking access to medical and financial information that von Anhalt has refused to give her, is open to having a third-party act as her conservator, her attorney Kenneth Kossoff has said. Von Anhalt has stated in court filings that he should be appointed conservator if Goetz rules one is necessary.

Gabor, a Hungarian-born sexpot of the 1950s and 1960s, has been in declining health and didn’t make an appearance at a February birthday party hosted at her mansion.

 

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