Leaving provisions in a will or other instrument which must be met in order to inherit an asset is nothing new in the world of estate litigation. This is something that happens all the time, especially when a settlor has children that may not be very motivated to do something with their lives. And for the most part, these conditions tend to be good things like having to complete a school degree or a training course in order to receive trust funds or other assets. However, sometimes provisions are made that may be impossible to meet and may not be of any good to the heirs that are left to deal with them.
Such is the case of Robert Mandelbaum who is a Manhattan Criminal Court judge. When his father Frank died, he left behind a substantial fortune that he acquired from the ID-verification firm Intellicheck, including a $180,000 trust for his grandchildren. However, a provision that Frank made could result in Robert's son being excluded. This provision states that Robert must marry the biological mother of the child. But Robert is already married...to a man!
Naturally, Robert is challenging the will on the basis that he would be breaking the New York marriage equality law if forced to enter into a sham marriage at the behest of his deceased father. At this time, no decision has been reached.
If you are having a similar experience and feel that a will provision is forcing you to do something illegal in order to obtain an inheritance, please consult with a professional Estate Lawyer as soon as possible.
*This blog entry was not written by an Attorney and should not be constituted as professional legal advice.