Trust and estate litigation involves numerous scenarios from celebrity disputes, to charitable contributions, to family feuds in your own backyard. In one of the larger estate disputes, parties have recently progressed settlement discussions in the latest litigation concerning A.I. duPont’s $56 million estate. In his 1932 will, financier and philanthropist A.I. duPont left the bulk of his $56 million estate to charity. The will established the Nemours Foundation, a charitable organization, which now operates 50 facilities in five states, including the A.I. duPont Hospital for Children in Rockland, Del. Specifically stated in his will, DuPont intended for “first consideration” to be given to “beneficiaries who are residents of Delaware.” This provision ultimately sparked lengthy litigation beginning nearly 50 years ago.
The latest round of litigation began in 2012 under Delaware’s then Attorney General Beau Biden, who alleged that Delaware was no longer the primary beneficiary of the trust. Lawyers for the State argue that rather than following duPont’s intentions to first provide for Delaware, Nemours is distributing those funds elsewhere. The litigation further claims that Nemours failed to spend at least half of the $1.3 billion in duPont trust distributions received over the last decade in Delaware. That requirement was part of a 1980 settlement agreement among the trust, Nemours and the State. Settlement discussions are still in the early stages, but if a settlement is reached, Delaware stands to gain millions of dollars to support children’s health care.
Lawyers at Beasley Allen are currently involved in litigating probate disputes concerning wills, trusts, and estates. This litigation covers a multitude of situations like the one above, cases involving undue influence and lack of capacity, as well as cases involving financial elder abuse. If you have a possible probate litigation issue, contact Beasley Allen lawyers Lance Gould or Leslie Pescia at 800-898-2034 or by email at Lance.Gould@beasleyallen.com or Leslie.Pescia@beasleyallen.com. They will be glad to be of assistance.
Source: The News Journal
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