Jeff Baskies on Fiel v. Hoffman: Soap Opera/Probate Litigation Highlights the Limits of State Slayer Statutes and Poses Questions Regarding Public Policy Issues Which Should Be Explored in Many States
Ben Novack, Jr. was murdered in a particularly gruesome and sordid manner in July of 2009. Details of his torture and murder made national news. After Ben’s murder, a subsequent investigation into the prior death of his mother, Bernice Novack, revealed that she too was murdered, although her death in April 2009 was initially ruled accidental. In 2012, Ben’s wife, Narcy Novack, was convicted of the crimes and sentenced to life in prison for paying hit men to torture and kill her husband, Ben, and to kill her mother-in-law, Bernice. In this probate case (and on-going litigation relating thereto), Ben’s wife, Narcy, has been treated as predeceased by the application of the Florida slayer statute which prohibits a murderer from inheriting from the estate of the person she killed. However, in a cruel twist, the alternate beneficiaries of Ben’s will, if Narcy and his mother predeceased him, were Narcy’s daughter (receiving a pecuniary bequest) and trusts for Narcy’s two adult grandsons as the residuary beneficiaries.
Jeff Baskies on Fiel v. Hoffman: Soap Opera/Probate Litigation Highlights the Limits of State Slayer Statutes and Poses Questions Regarding Public Policy Issues Which Should Be Explored in the Many States