For years the probate courts have been cesspools. I was not aware of there being a statute of limitations on the probate of a testamentary document or even the need for one. I was aware that attempts to steal the proceeds of estates has been a national disgrace for a long time.
When I first became a lawyer, I heard a more seasoned lawyer tell his client “if dad dies, before you call the undertaker, get into the safety deposit box and empty it.”
When I asked the question “why?” I was told that the undertaker put a death notice in the newspaper and the bank sealed the box – it could be reopened only after a representative of the State of Illinois visited the box. In the inspect of the box and inventory by the state in order for the inheritance tax to be assessed, value items usually disappeared. Of course the inspector denied that these items were ever in the box – as the State employee and maybe an assistant were the only ones allowed to examine the box it was their word against yours. You certainly could not search their brief cases.
I then made further inquiry and found that the seasoned lawyer was not the only one who gave that advice or experienced that problem. In fact the advice was quite common and even today most of the people I deal with or dealt with try to avoid keeping fungible items in the box.
As to testamentary documents such as wills the way around a statute of limitations problem with probating a will is to file the will. Illinois as an example has a requirement that the will be filed within 30 days of death. It can be filed later, but, heirs need to be protected and filing the will does exactly that.
The longer the will is out of probate the harder it is to prove up. In most states a will is a written document for the decedent that is witnessed by two or more disinterested people who are ready willing and able to testify truthfully that the testator was of sound and disposing mind when he/she executed the document AND THAT the testator executed the document of his/her own volition. Witnesses die – if all are dead a prove -up problem exists – or in the case where undue influence exists protecting the rightful heirs is a problem. Thus, it does not seem to great a hardship to do a timely probate, assuming that one is necessary. No probate is necessary if everyone agrees to the terms of the will and all the legitimate expenses of the decedent are paid.
The Statute of Limitations on probate does not necessarily mean that if the heirs sleep on their rights for more than 10 years that they lose their inheritance. Many States have a marketable title act for real estate. A verified claim filed at any time relevant protects the interest in real estate. If we are talking about real estate, 7 years and paying the taxes or entry upon claim of right creates an ADVERSE POSSESSION. As to person property – possession is 9/10s of the law, and after ten years few items have much in the way of value.
I hope that this places the issue into perspective for you.
What is relevant to me is the fact that the probate courts are viewed with such suspicion and fear of fraud. The elder cleansing (guardianship) scandal is so rampant and so venal that people are afraid of the Court, its corruption, and the miscreants who inhabit the same. In a democracy such is intolerable as the Court system is the escape value of society! We need it to address our legitimate disputes!
As if the problems with the investigation into the ABA past president salivating to launder money during a recent 60 minutes broadcast was not enough, with no apology from the ABA or explanation, and then they pulled about 100+ comments when my suspension for (honestly) blogging about corruption in the courts in Illinois and elsewhere was not enough for them, apparently the ABA has enough clout to also pull a Wall Street Journal article on how they at first agreed to help a Chinese dissident lawyer publish a book on corruption in China, and then they went and pulled their support.
Since the WSJ article was pulled and now the ABA seems to be complicit, and you know this blog has absolutely no tolerance for any such shennagins, I have published it in full below.
No wonder why the majority of the American public has abandoned mega media and now fully 60% of Americans read blogs and the internet for the news and absolutely reject mega media because it’s too unreliable and biased.
Read on, and I pledge that if there is a human or civil rights story pulled by mega media because someone wants to aid and abet human and civil rights violations, it for sure will be published here where I have absolutely no tolerance for such heinous shameful behavior.
Chinese Rights Lawyer Strikes Back at ABA Over Scuttled Book
Apr 29, 2016 3:51 am HKT
Today we received an email from Senator Kirk’s offices informing us that the Senator will listen to our grievances about the corruption in the courts, and in particular, probate court, if we can put together as many affidavits as possible.
She suggested at least 25.
I already have 25, but I want more to show him the urgency of how soooo many people have been involved in cases where seniors or disaabled persons were targeted, they were forced into nursing homes, drugged, POA from kind caring relatives stripped away for no reason, and often without justification.
We are also looking for stories where attorneys were disciplined wrongfully for speaking out in court, as Ken and I have been for writing volumes of emails, faxes and letters to the authorities and publishing this blog on court corruption.
We NEED your input.
Call me or email me so we can put together your declarations. We have to show the Senator’s offices your complaints and gripes are real.
They are asking fist for Illinois declarations and statements of the “elder cleansing”–“target, isolate, medicate, drain the estate, narcotize to death and cremate” but any state will do.
please contact me ASAP.
from Ken Ditkowsky
—– Forwarded Message —–
From: “Burke, Cindy (Kirk)” <Cindy_Burke@kirk.senate.gov>
To: “email@example.com” <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Friday, April 29, 2016 1:55 PM
Subject: Your email to the Senator
Without enforcement of the law there can be no justice
1729 Alamo Avenue, Suite A
Colorado Springs, CO 80907
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE NAPRA Demands Immediate Federal Intervention into Probate Racket Across America
We must be protected from public corruption, racketeering, mob tactics, and crimes in our judicial system. Federal monitors must be placed in probate courts across the country including in Colorado.
The National Association for Probate Reform and Advocacy (“NAPRA”) is a non-partisan, nation-wide grassroots coalition of non-profit and other volunteer organizations dedicated to helping families in probate courts who have been victimized, harassed, coerced, threatened, and harmed by public corruption and racketeering in probate courts.
In an urgent letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, NAPRA has asked for the DOJ to intervene to obtain an injunction and immediate return of stolen assets by probate lawyers including public administrators. These government employees “the officers of the court” have violated state and federal laws. Rather than protect vulnerable citizens, the state courts “protect the racket”. Families distrust the system that created the economic ruin, PTSD, extortion, and conspiracy to defraud their estates and cannot go back to the system that created the problem as the state courts have done. Because their estates have been drained, Americans cannot afford to pay more attorneys to perpetuate corruption.
NAPRA is working in Colorado with Senator(s) Woods, Carroll, and Tate and with the FBI to investigate abuses in Colorado. In the next few weeks, the FBI will be heading to a region in Colorado where the Public Administrator is attempting to convert over 500 acres of a family’s land.
There are hundreds of thousands of stories not only in Colorado, but across America. The racketeering is obvious by patterns of forced mediation, objections to accountings, coercion, “shake down of assets”, conspiracy to commit and the commission of fraud. The mediations include lawyers and retired judges that threaten families with lies in order to coerce a settlement.
Often the public administrator blames the victims– the family– for abuse so that they can take “fiduciary” charge of assets, pillage, churn fees, intimidate, and keep the bureaucracy going in order to bankrupt the family. This is by far the most common scheme. The judicial system has become a system of tyranny and bureaucracy. The worst tyranny and mob racket are the unchecked Article III agency courts – known as probate courts.
America’s Probate Codes violate our nation’s state and federal laws and statutes and the United States Bill of Rights that demands there will be no “taking of life, liberty, or property absent due process of law.” Lawyers, magistrates and mediators systematically participate in schemes to steal assets, coerce bad settlements, threaten families, harass, drug, and intimidate the vulnerable in order to commit their crimes.
This results in the induction of horrific traumatic stress disorders of millions of Americans who never suffered from stress disorders.
NAPRA demands an immediate federal investigation starting in Colorado and moving into Florida, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Illinois, New York, Connecticut, Ohio, Arizona, New Mexico, California, and Massachusetts on behalf of the innocent families who have been defrauded and had their property illegally sold.
The post deprivation remedies are now approaching the billion dollar mark.
The people of the United States of America believe that our nation must be protected from public corruption, racketeering, mob tactics, crimes, illegal activity, and cronyism in our judicial system.
NAPRA asks that “federal monitors” be placed in Colorado’s probate courts as well as all states, as we the people expect the rule of law to follow in the administration of our estates.
For further information contact Athena Roe, J.D.
and it is clearly sanctioned by the Illinois Atty Registration and Discipline Commission
The Mary Sykes 09 P 4585 (Cook County) is a textbook case of elder cleansing complete with a kidnapping, isolation, abuse, exploitation etc. The corruption is documented in the file. The summons by which jurisdiction was obtained was not served. With the victim removed from the County, without a valid court order to do so, the county sheriff was given an address to serve a summons that did not comply with the statutory requirement (755 ILCS 5/11a – 10). The sheriff in a letter acknowledged he had no record of service. Thus, no jurisdiction was obtained. THAT SHOULD HAVE ENDED THE SYKES CASE AND RETURNED MARY’S LIFE TO HER!
To protect a citizen the 14th amendment requires NOTICE and hearing PRIOR to adjudication. The Statutory notice (jurisdictional) was ignored, and one of the guardian ad litem actually wrote to Gloria Sykes admitting that no hearing was every had. This is backed up by the Court file. The judge during her evidence deposition (see page 90, 91, and 92) actually admitted that the case before her was ‘fixed’ and she was wired. THAT SHOULD HAVE ENDED THE DISCIPLINARY CASES and caused the IARDC to join in demanding an HONEST INVESTIGATION .
This ISIS -LIKE assault by the miscreants, the IARDC, the 18 USCA 242, 18 USCA 371 co-conspirators on the Illinois Constitution and the Federal Constitution should be the focus point of Gloria Sykes at this time. Tim Lahrman spent years helping her and travelling into Cook County – at his own expense – in an effort to assist. Janet Phelan lent her considerable skills as a journalist and without compensation wrote articles trying to draw public attention to Mary’s plight. JoAnne Denison not only proved a great amount of pro bono legal assistance, but did much hand holding. ****** The list goes on.
Thus, the net result is that the miscreants have profited to the tune of at least three million dollars – up till now TAX FREE, have never accounted for over a million dollars in gold coins, the cash in Mary’s mattress ******. In addition, the bold miscreants managed to sell Mary’s house, deprive Gloria of her own house, throw her valuable furnishings out into the alley, deny her the enjoyment of home and property, and steal her inheritance for the Biddy estate. (unknown value – might be another 1/2 million dollars – taken from a safety deposit box in the name of both Mary and Gloria) For good measure the hazard insurance settlement proceeds that the Circuit Court awarded solely to Gloria (about $700,000 plus or minus) have also been stolen.
The list of tragedies perpretrated upon Gloria and her family is a nightmare which should never occur in a free, open and just court system. It was simply one felony after another, which the ARDC refused to prosecute, the Chicago and Naperville police refused to investigate, as well as all States Attorneys–Madigan, Alvarez (now gone), Diane Saltoun and others, despite the fact that a large amount of taxes and health care proceeds refunds are due both Illinois and the US Government for the placing of Mary in a nursing home against her will and drugging her at the end, claiming it was death from “dementia” and “natural causes” when the only natural cause was excessive narcotics when the money in the estate ran out.
Maureen Connors, Adam Stern, Cynthia Farenga, Peter Schmeidel, Debra Jo Soehlig, the nursing home operators and administrators, Carolyn and Fred Toerpe, the police and states attorneys were all part of this string of felonies, 18 USC sec 4 and 18 USC sec 371 conspiracy.
It’s time to investigate and end the horror show of probate court in Illinois. Time to come clean. Time to do the right thing and treat elders and their families with dignity and respect.
The Tom Brady case and the Lawyer disciplinary cases are amazingly similar.
The Post article is critical of the lawyers for not laying emphasis to the fact that Brady is innocent. Unfortunately, such an analysis begs the question or fails to understand the question (and the problem). We in America have several core and basic principles that the Brady and the Disciplinary cases not only ignore, but proactively abrogate. The presumption of innocence is not only the watch word of American jurisprudence, but, a lynch pin of our Democracy.
What does the Presumption of Innocence mean? It means that the plaintiff (or prosecution, or claimant) must prove his/her/its claim by the degree of evidence required by statute, convention, or tradition. It means that when the NFL or its commissioner makes an allegation that Tom Brady had something to do with the deflation of footballs the NFL and its commissioner has to prove it. It matters not whether the matter is tried in a Court, an Arbitration panel, a Disciplinary panel, or an Administrative Court. It means that the trier of fact has to be proactive to make certain that the RULE OF LAW is followed and it also means that the litigants’ counsel (attorney) have a affirmative duty to make certain that the rules are followed.
Thus, in the Tim Larkin case the Judge is not a bystander. The States Attorney is not an advocate – but a lawyer dedicated by his own to see that Tim obtains and obtained a fair and proper hearing and was in fact afforded due process and the presumption of innocence. Whether Tim was notified of the hearing or not, when the judge and the attorneys read the crime laboratory report each should have demanded that the charges be dismissed and the ex=parte hearing should have ended with a NOT GUILTY.
In the lawyer disciplinary cases, Larkin as a lawyer had a duty to reject Cynthia Farenga’s claim that JoAnne and I were not telling the truth as to the Mary Sykes case 09 P 4585. First, Farenga’s letter referred to the posting of a demand for an HONEST INVESTIGATION in the Probate Sharks blog. Larkin was fully aware of 47 USCA 230, Article 1 of the Illinois Constitution, and the First Amendment. Second, Larkin and the SCOI were all aware that the Mary Sykes file kept by the Probate Division of the Circuit Court of Cook County revealed that:
1. The Sheriff of Cook County denied serving summons on Mary Sykes and the file confirmed that the summons required by 755 ILCS 5/11a – 10 was never attempted to be served on Mary and thus the Circuit Court could not obtain jurisdiction.
2. That Circuit Court proceedings (and in particular an Petition for an order of protection) made it very clear that Mary was not incompetent.
3. The prior notice to the family of Mary Sykes, which the SCOI ruled was jurisdictional had never been provided.
4. That no hearing had been held to determine if Mary was incompetent, and therefore appointment of a guardian was not only without jurisdiction but wrong.
5. That the corrupt jurist at page 91 of her evidence deposition admitted that she was fixed and that she was predisposed to appoint a guardian for Mary. Her words were to the effect that the same result would be reached if she were forced to dismiss the case due to lack of jurisdiction.
The statute and tradition require that Larkin prove that the demand for an HONEST INVESTIGATION was untruthful by clear and convincing evidence. This is statutory; however both Larkin and the SCOI ignored the requirement.
In the Brady case, the NFL had, no matter how you slice it, to provide at the very least a scintilla of evidence that Brady had do something to cause the footballs to be under inflated. As no evidence of Brady’s involvement was shown, what the Court of Appeals did was to follow the unacceptable precedent that the RULE OF LAW and the presumption of innocence are vitiated when it is either expedient or a clout heavy individual with a pecuniary interest is not getting his/her way .
What Brady highlights is the disrespect for not only the RULE OF LAW but the code of fair play that has been our tradition for centuries.
NB. Brady might have been totally guilty or totally innocent. It does not matter – the NFL and the Federal Appeals court disgraced themselves by refusing to require the entity making the accusation to prove it. The lynch pin of American society has been severely compromised.
WASHINGTON—The Supreme Court reinforced free-speech protections for public employees Tuesday, ruling that a Paterson, N.J., police officer can sue after being demoted when city officials learned he carried a campaign sign for the mayor’s political opponent.
The twist in the case was that the officer, Jeffrey Heffernan, said he hadn’t actually supported Larry Spagnola, a former police chief who was running against Paterson Mayor Joey Torres. Instead, he had picked up the sign on behalf of his bedridden mother, who asked him to get a replacement after a Spagnola lawn sign vanished ahead of the 2006 municipal election.
The Supreme Court previously has held that public employees can generally sue when a government agency punishes them for political activity undertaken on their own time. But a federal appeals court in Philadelphia dismissed Mr. Heffernan’s case, reasoning that since he delivered the sign as a favor to his mother rather than to express an opinion, no constitutional rights were violated by his demotion.
The Supreme Court by a 6-2 vote saw the case differently.
“The government’s reason for demoting Heffernan is what counts here,” Justice Stephen Breyer wrote for the court. “When an employer demotes an employee out of a desire to prevent the employee from engaging in political activity that the First Amendment protects, the employee is entitled to challenge that unlawful action… even if, as here, the employer makes a factual mistake about the employee’s behavior.”
Justice Breyer cited a 1994 ruling that said a nurse could sue a public hospital in Macomb, Ill. The hospital fired her for badmouthing the obstetrics department. The nurse maintained that rather than merely griping, she was raising policy questions about hospital practices, a matter of public concern protected by the First Amendment. In that case, “the employer reasonably but mistakenly thought that the employee hadn’t engaged in protected speech. Here, the employer mistakenly thought the employee had engaged in protected speech,” Justice Breyer wrote.
The opinion continued a pattern evident since the February death of Justice Antonin Scalia left the eight-member court wary of deadlock on ideological lines. Since then, its output has been characterized by a conservative-liberal majority issuing relatively short opinions avoiding sweeping conclusions. Tuesday’s decision, numbering eight pages, was joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
Conservative Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito have tended to dissent, as they did Tuesday.
“Demoting a dutiful son who aids his elderly bedridden mother may be callous, but it is not unconstitutional,” Justice Thomas wrote, joined by Justice Alito.
Mr. Heffernan’s attorney, Mark Frost, said the case created new protections for “perceived association.”
“It instructs supervisors that if you are going to act with ill motives to suppress somebody’s rights, you’re still going to be held responsible,” he said.
Mr. Torres, a Democrat who has been Paterson’s mayor since 2002 except for the 2010-2014 term, didn’t return a call seeking comment. An attorney for the city said he had been directed not to comment on the decision.
Write to Jess Bravin at email@example.com