Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. was retained to restore the adult biological children of a deceased shareholder to possession of her Upper West Side Apartment following her sudden tragic death in Florida. Both sister and brother had resided in the apartment with their mother in the months preceding her passing as they strived to establish careers in New York City. As they explained, the design and renovations their mother undertook in the apartment each entailed remnants of meaningful symbols of their childhood. Upon returning to their home shortly after their mother’s passing, the cooperative blocked access to the apartment pursuant to the direction of their uncle, the Administrator of their mother’s estate as designated in her Last Will and Testament.
Despite there existing a provision in their mother’s living trust providing that her children could enjoy any residence that became trust property following her death, rent-free, with specific reference to the subject apartment, the Cooperative Board insisted that the ultimate decision concerning the children’s occupancy of the apartment fell within its sole discretion. Moreover, their uncle, in his capacity as Administrator of the estate (with whom the children had an already strained relationship) made it clear that he sought to expeditiously sell the apartment while simultaneously having commenced an ejectment action against the children in respect of the family’s Florida residence. It was clear that their mother’s intent in crafting such a provision to be included in her revocable living trust was to protect her children’s interest in her property and to provide a financial safety net for same. Instead, the majority of control over the Estate’s assets fell with the Administrator.
In a state of despair, the children hired Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. to commence an illegal lockout proceeding on their behalf. Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. jumped into action and following several court appearances and conferences with the children’s Florida-based Trust and Estates counsel, was able to settle the case on extremely favorable terms including restoring the children to possession, and ultimately allowing the Administrator to sell the Apartment contingent upon his paying the rent for each child to reside in an alternate apartment of their choosing in New York City as well as moving expenses.