Estate of Denial news clips (3/18/16)

Former hospice director pleads not guilty (TX)

The Brownsville Herald

March 10, 2016

EDINBURG — Monica Patterson, former Hidalgo County Pct. 2 Commissioner Hector Palacios’ daughter, went before a state district judge Thursday and pleaded not guilty to capital murder and charges of theft and misappropriation of funds from her previous employer.

Patterson was arrested in August and formally charged by a justice of the peace in connection to the death by asphyxiation of 96-year-old Martin Knell. She stands accused of hiring Angel Mario Garza, 37, in January 2015 to kill Knell in his home.


Shari Redstone prepares for battle to control a media empire

Business Standard

March 12, 2016

Shari Redstone pulls her iPhone out of her purse to show off “just one” picture of her grandchildren. She laughs then apologises when she sees that the back of the phone is covered with heart-shaped stickers – the result of a craft session with the two youngsters.

Petite, with coiffed blond hair, sharp blue eyes and a cautious smile, Shari is the picture of a doting grandmother. Beneath that cheery exterior, though, is a tenacious woman at the centre of a battle over her family’s fortune as well as the fate of two of the world’s largest media companies, Viacom and CBS.


Judge rules against local attorney in fee dispute (GA)

The Augusta Chronicle

March 14, 2016

A judge has ruled against an Augusta-area attorney who claimed he was entitled to $2.5 million from the estate of Harrell Tiller, a former Richmond County Commission chairman who was active in local politics for decades.

In a final order signed March 7, Chief Judge J. Carlisle Overstreet voided the liens Christopher Nicholson filed against 21 properties and unspecified bank accounts of Tiller, ruling that an attorney cannot place a lien unless he was retained and had recovered property of value for the client.

Nicholson claimed he was entitled to the money for the three days he served as Tiller’s emergency guardian before he was removed by the probate judge for misconduct. Nicholson is running for the Superior Court judgeship held by Judge Carl C. Brown Jr.


Dispute among Galt House heirs lands in court (KY)


March 14, 2016

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – A family dispute over control of the Al J. Schneider Co. has landed in Jefferson County court as the sale of its crown jewel, the Galt House Hotel, appears imminent.

Four heirs to the fortune of the late commercial developer Al J. Schneider are asking a judge to affirm their right to manage the Schneider Co., whose holdings include the Galt House, two downtown office buildings and the Crowne Plaza Louisville Airport Hotel.


What Your Aging Parent’s Broker Isn’t Telling You


March 15, 2016

That study, “The Market for Financial Adviser Misconduct” reviewed disciplinary records over a 10 year period, covering about 640,000 brokers in almost 4000 securities firms, according to an On Wall Street article from March 2, 2016.  The article reports that misconduct is common in counties filled with wealthy elderly people, such as Palm Beach, Fla. where 18.1% had engaged in misconduct.  What do we mean by misconduct? It means these brokers ripped off their clients one way or another, causing financial losses.  Could anyone be doing this to your loved one? We think you need to find out.  Your aging parent can be an easy mark and not even know it.

Perhaps you have not interfered with your aging parent’s financial decisions before now.  After all it’s your parent’s money. But there comes a time when you have to help out in managing daily money matters. Maybe you are paying Mom’s bills or looking at the financial statements.  When a parent has memory loss, you definitely need to be doing these things!  And while you are looking over her shoulder, it’s good to also investigate who has been advising her about her investments. There are all too many bad apples out there in the financial services industry and they take advantage of their vulnerable older clients often enough for you to be concerned.


Texas Bar Protects the Connected, Lawyer Says

Courthouse News Service

March 15, 2016

AUSTIN (CN) – A New York-based attorney accused the State Bar of Texas of protecting “politically-connected attorneys” after it dismissed his disciplinary grievance against state Attorney General Ken Paxton.
Ty Clevenger said he “really shouldn’t be surprised” the bar’s Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel dismissed his February grievance regarding a pending felony securities fraud case against Paxton in Collin County Court.


Editorial: Aid for frail elders; gun bills blocked (FL)

Sarasota Herald-Tribune

March 15, 2016

Strong, but not enough

The adult guardianship reform bill — approved by the Legislature in the just-completed session and signed into law last week by Gov. Rick Scott — mandates landmark protections for the frail elderly in Florida.

Yet the new law is only one step toward effective oversight of the extensive system of caring for adult wards. More steps must be taken.


Randy Meisner Fights Kids Over Conservatorship Plans (CA)

March 15, 2016

The veteran rocker’s relatives have been concerned for his mental wellbeing after his wife Lana shot herself during a domestic dispute at their Studio City, Los Angeles home on 6 March (16) – two days before Meisner’s 70th birthday.

Authorities subsequently ruled Lana’s death was accidental, amid reports suggesting Meisner, who has previously battled drink and drug addictions, was struggling to cope with the tragedy.

His estranged kids are allegedly hoping to have him placed under their conservatorship, but the former Eagles bassist is objecting to their plans and he has filed legal papers in a Los Angeles court outlining his own request.


The children of fallen Houston police officer Richard Martin locked in court battle (TX)


March 16, 2016

HOUSTON (KTRK) — The two surviving children of fallen Houston police officer Richard Martin never thought they’d find themselves in court months after he was killed in the line of duty. Yet, this Wednesday afternoon, the kids, their mother, and the attorneys crowded into a probate court for a recusal hearing. The family does not believe the judge in the probate case, Rory Olsen, can be impartial.

“I think it’s difficult to be fair whenever you have a problem with somebody,” said Kimberly Martin, the ex-wife of the officer. Martin and her children say Judge Olsen should be removed from the case because he has raised concerns about the children’s attorney, who is trying to get the children access to their dead father’s estate.

Besides their belief that there is judicial bias, the family also says the temporary administrator appointed by the Judge, attorney Robert Talton, doesn’t have the children’s best interest at heart. The Houston Police Officers Union backs up the family. The Union President, Ray Hunt said Talton evicted the officer’s daughter from her own home, changed the locks, and allowed an out-of-state aunt to come to the home and remove belongings.


Legal battle brewing for the Sagamore Hotel: two signed contracts at $70M and $63M (FL)

The Real Deal Magazine

March 16, 2016

A bitter legal battle is about to brew for the Sagamore Hotel in the wake of owner Martin Taplin’s death, as two investment firms each have signed and executed contracts to buy the property, The Real Deal has learned.

Merchants Hospitality, a New York-based firm that owns the Hyatt Andaz, Philippe Chow and Westin Aruba Hotel & Casino, has the first executed contract, signed in December for $70 million for the South Beach hotel, a spokesperson for Merchants confirmed to TRD.

Taplin later signed a $63 million contract with Fort Lauderdale-based InSite Group, Tuesday of last week, just before he drove to his step-mother’s penthouse on the 25th floor of Harbour House in Bal Harbour and fell to his death, several sources told TRD. Ron Tencer, InSite’s executive in charge of acquisitions, declined to comment on the contract, referring TRD to the company’s outside counsel, who did not return calls seeking comment.


Sumner Redstone Hires New Lawyer In Battle Over His Healthcare

The Hollywood Reporter

March 16, 2016

Sumner Redstone has a new lawyer in his battle with ex-companion Manuela Herzer, who seeks to be reappointed as the 92-year-old media mogul’s healthcare agent. The Hollywood Reporter has learned that Robert Klieger at Hueston Hennigan is coming aboard this case that’s set for trial in May. Since Herzer first filed her petition in November, Redstone has been represented by Loeb & Loeb litigator Gabrielle Vidal.

According to Redstone’s camp, Loeb & Loeb is not being replaced; Klieger is just joining the legal team.

New legal representation during the course of litigation sometimes happens, of course, and isn’t usually noteworthy, but here, Redstone’s mental capacity is directly at issue. As such, the question arises: Who is doing the hiring for Redstone?