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Detailed settlement agreement not specific enough for son to claim funds

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Although a settlement agreement worked out between siblings included details about who would receive the comic books, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled because the document did not specifically address the accounts receivable, one of the surviving sons would not be entitled to the money.

After George W. King Sr. died in 2001, his three children began fighting over the ownership of his many businesses. His daughter, Kay King, and her son, Christopher King, filed a complaint against her brothers, George King and Bob King, and against five of her father’s corporations and three partnerships.

In June 2003, the trial court appointed a receiver. About a year later, the receiver paid more than $2 million for the estate’s outstanding tax liabilities. He drew the bulk of the funds from one particular company, Crown Associates Inc. because that entity had more liquid assets available than the other businesses. The receiver credited Crown by creating an account receivable which in 2007 was valued at $687,278.

On Feb. 22, 2005, the siblings entered into a Term Sheet for Settlement of Litigation which represented their partial agreement on the broad outlines of asset distribution. As a part of that document, the assets and/or equity interest of Crown was conveyed to the son, George Dean King.  

Concluding the accounts receivable were not part of the assets, the trial court ruled the receiver should eliminate all inter-company accounts prior to transferring Crown to George King.

On appeal, George King argued the court abused its discretion when it approved the elimination of certain Crown accounts receivable prior to conveyance. He asserted the accounts receivable were still on the books when the Term Sheet was executed in February 2005.
 
The COA disagreed in George Dean King v. Kay S. King, et al., 49A02-1202-MF-73. It noted the receiver initially proposed that all receivership entities be liquidated with the proceeds being divided equally between the siblings. However, that goal was altered after the siblings executed the Term Sheet which made the assets included in each receivership entity important.  

While the Term Sheet divided a multitude of assets ranging from real estate to safety deposit boxes and even comic books, it did not address Crown’s accounts receivable.

“Given the level of detail embodied in the Term Sheet,” Judge Patricia Riley wrote, “the absence of a clear expression by the parties to repay the accounts receivable which had been expressly created by the Receiver during the Receivership and which existed during the execution of the Term Sheet, is evidence of intent that no such offset was bargained for.”


 

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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