Court battle resolved as elderly woma...

Court battle resolved as elderly woman returns home - Greenwich...

There are 28 comments on the Greenwich Time story from Dec 11, 2008, titled Court battle resolved as elderly woman returns home - Greenwich.... In it, Greenwich Time reports that:

After a hard fought probate court battle that fractured a family, 85-year-old Marilyn Plank returned home to Michigan last weekend where her former conservator said she is happy to be.

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Single White Female

Okemos, MI

#1 Dec 11, 2008
Grayson is speaks volumes of lies. Marilyn had doctor appointments scheduled upon her return to Michigan. He should be disbarred for spreading such malicious and inflamatory words. He is the biggest slime ball of an attorney I have ever seen. Now that Marilyn is back in Michigan I hope the courts throw the criminal book at Lin Higgins and Christine Rales for kidnapping and bankrupting her estate. Those evil sisters should do hard time for the mess they started. Think OJ.
zaius

San Diego, CA

#2 Dec 11, 2008
It is simply amazing that Eric Grayson continues to insult the intellegence of the public by telling them that Marilyn was in Greenwich for "excellent" medical care. The truth of the matter is that Marilyn Plank's team of doctors and cardiologist of 25 years in Michigan could not provide Mr. Grayson with a tidy bank account like the one Linda Higgins paid him from her mother's personal finances over the past 18 months.
Justice for Marilyn

New York, NY

#3 Dec 11, 2008
Well there he goes again...Grayson lying outright. Such a dissapointment from an attorney. If he would bother to check out the facts, Marilyn had just seen her doctor days prior these two "daughters" plot to kidnap Marilyn to Washington, DC (her first stop). If he could get his facts straight, he would know that the 8 months were the time that Marilyn spent in Washington DC not seeing her doctors, not Michigan. If he paid attention to the facts of the case and had any real knowledge of Marilyn's medical care, then he would know she came from Washington DC to Greenwich, CT and was at that point diagnosed with diabetes, after her time in Washington DC. It was never treated during her 8 month stay in DC...fine doctor care? Grayson conveniently screws up the information leaving off the part about 8 months in Washington DC, holed up in an over the garage apartment by one the daughters involved in the plot with all phones removed and access to the outside world cut off. All these facts are documented in court record.

Grayson, either learn the facts after your 1.5 years in probate on this case or stop lying. No wonder you lost.
sheepdog

AOL

#4 Dec 11, 2008
In reading this article, I immediately wondered why her 8 month stay in D.C. apartment wasn't mentioned.

"'When Mrs. Plank left Michigan, she hadn't been to her doctor for eight months and had an undiagnosed case of diabetes,' said Grayson."
An omission and a half truth. I think this is how it should have read: "When Mrs. Plank came to CT. after spending 8 months in D.C., she hadn't seen a Dr. for 8 months and had an undiagnosed case of diabetes."
Her assets were diminished. Her property will be sold to pay for her care in an assisted living facility? Who "suggested" a Mich. facility? As long as she's in "the system" eh? Did anyone ask Marilyn what SHE wanted as soon as she was taken to CT.? Apparently, there was no one to ask her while she was in D.C.
If Marilyn was kept in an over-the-garage apartment for 8 months with no phone, no way to communicate with the outside world, and in effect held hostage, then why didn't the two "daughters" go to a D.C. probate court? Medical care not good there? Words that come to mind are: conspiring to commit a crime, commiting a crime (kidnapping-taking under false pretences), collusion.

"Some of Plank's seven children said she was moved to the Greens of Greenwich, at 1155 King St., against her will and forced to stay, while another faction maintained she was moved to receive better medical care."
Didn't she have family members in Michigan willing to care for her, who were available to her by mutual agreement?
If the faction that maintained she was moved to receive "better care," why did it take 8 months to bring her to CT. "for better care?" And why didn't she see a Dr. during the 8 months that she was "confined?"

Here's an excerpt from Eod:

"So called inheritance and estate planning scams are reportedly on the rise and perhaps even more pernicious is the rise in inheritance related litigation as the ever larger stockpiles of cash and real estate act as a magnet for trouble-makers...
IRA cases happen quietly and those involved in estate looting actions want to keep it that way. With that, EstateofDenial.com encourages additional vigilance in two other areas. First, take a look at your own community. Your town is likely home to “trouble-makers” as described by Horace - those who use the legal system to subject legitimate heirs to this litigation tax on inheritance. Work to know who these people are and avoid them. Hopefully others will do the same and your area will cease to be viewed as potentially target rich. Also, make this an election issue with local officials, especially your judges. When these cases come before a judge, are they supporters of individuals’ property rights or their legal industry peers’ property poaching actions?"

Check the comments-accusations of "living rent free" a common ploy used by "officers of the court"to vikify family members:

http://www.estateofdenial.com/2008/11/23/esta...
Lori D

Quincy, MA

#5 Dec 12, 2008
Ms. Friedman, you didn't mention anything about the money. Wasn't this all about money?

FAMILIES FIGHT - FIDUCIARIES FEAST!

Save your family from these unlawful grannynaps!

www.STOPGuardianAbuse.org
kimmanire

United States

#6 Dec 12, 2008
Thank God that she was taken home.

Something that the courts needs to know and remember (not the pocketbooks of their attorney and court appointed guardian friends) is that Dementia and Alz. patients need to be where they are familuar and feel comfortable.

The judge made a good decision in allowing her to return home.
Elaine Renoire

Clinton, IN

#7 Dec 12, 2008
I wonder how Marilyn Plank was diagnosed with Alzheimer's when Alzheimer's is only diagnosable upon autopsy.

It's becoming commonplace that society diagnoses people with Alzheimer's when they start getting forgetful. Then, the slippery slope into conservatorship horror.

I am glad she's returned home; that's the most important thing of all.

Lori D said it perfectly: "Family fight - fiduciaries feast".

Are the fiduciaries still feasting?
what a world

Flushing, NY

#8 Dec 12, 2008
Justice for Marilyn wrote:
... Grayson, either learn the facts after your 1.5 years in probate on this case or stop lying. No wonder you lost.
Oh, heaven forbid attorneys were shackled by having to confine themselves to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The poor dears would be in worse shape than Lehman employees!
what a world

Flushing, NY

#9 Dec 12, 2008
Elaine Renoire wrote:
I wonder how Marilyn Plank was diagnosed with Alzheimer's when Alzheimer's is only diagnosable upon autopsy.
True, Elaine, but the diagnosis is made, none the less. I believe it is when other forms of dementia seem not to apply. Plus, the symptomatology of the different types of dementia differs somewhat; so they have been able to identify some behaviors that are more common with what ultimately is confirmed to be Alzheimer's.

But, what is curious to me is what I read in one article on this matter that the conservatorship was approved based on the testimony of one expert - a doctor, who had only seen Marilyn ONE time. If it were on the word of a long-term doctor, fine; but someone who just met her?
sheepdog

AOL

#10 Dec 12, 2008
She was taken to a Michigan Assisted Living FACILITY. So, though it is a good thing that she's back in Michigan, I understand that it was suggested by a CT. judge (ordered?) who had no juristiction (no one studies the Constitution?) that she go to a facility.

That a family member not be guardian or Conservator is by a design, or rather, a tradition adhered to within the CT. probate system, whether the family member qualifies or not. Whether all family members agree or not. So, by what was set in motion, through these actions, she's now "in the system." Is her property to be sold to support these "judges," attorneys, Conservators, Guardian Ad Litems etc.?
The people in Greenwich need to know exactly how the little independent probate courts in CT. support themselves.
Also, the public only knows 2nd, 3rd. hand exactly what Marilybn wants and how "well" she's doing.
what a world

Flushing, NY

#11 Dec 12, 2008
sheepdog wrote:
That a family member not be guardian or Conservator is by a design, or rather, a tradition adhered to within the CT.
This is not true, if I am understanding you correctly. The Courts tend to favor family members as overseers, even when family members are reluctant or claim they cannot do the job properly. Non-family overseers are generally only sought as a last resort ... when no family members are available or when there is unsurmountable disagreement among family members about the care of the person in question.
what a world

Flushing, NY

#12 Dec 12, 2008
Oh, I should have added that I do agree that these matter are quite a little racket to support attorneys. Right from the start you have a Court appointed attorney for the Conserved Person PLUS a Guardian ad litem (also usually an attorney). Plus the estate of the conserved person pays some sort of Court fees for every hearing. PLUS, if you do have a non-family Conservator, that person is usually an attorney.

Unfortunately, people do not think about or look into these things until it happens to them.
sheepdog

AOL

#13 Dec 12, 2008
what a world wrote:
<quoted text>
This is not true, if I am understanding you correctly. The Courts tend to favor family members as overseers, even when family members are reluctant or claim they cannot do the job properly. Non-family overseers are generally only sought as a last resort ... when no family members are available or when there is unsurmountable disagreement among family members about the care of the person in question.
You are incorrect. Non family members (attorneys) are appointed as Conservators either "of the person" or "of the estate," almost exclusively. Check court files. Courts do NOT favor family members even when they are qualified, even when subject requests the family member as their caregiver. Sometimes, from the list of Attorneys submitted to the judge, a single individual is appointed to be Conservator "of the person" and when the "subject" dies, Conserv. of the "person" becomes the Conservator "of the estate" (maybe just for the record). That is what I've seen, since some family members are kept from knowing anything about the disbursment of the estate until a final accounting.
There are many scenarios, many stories, many testimonies, many records that dispute what you've said here.

You said, "The Courts tend to favor family members as overseers (what do you mean by OVERSEERS?), even when family members are reluctant or claim they cannot do the job properly."
Since the "goal" is supposed to be to protect the person, and preserve the estate for it's RIGHTFUL beneficiaries, are you telling readers that the court would appoint a reluctant family member????
Are you saying a court would favor a person who claims not to be able to do the job properly?
That flies in the face of the "court's" stated purpose.
sheepdog

AOL

#14 Dec 12, 2008
what a world wrote:
Oh, I should have added that I do agree that these matter are quite a little racket to support attorneys. Right from the start you have a Court appointed attorney for the Conserved Person PLUS a Guardian ad litem (also usually an attorney). Plus the estate of the conserved person pays some sort of Court fees for every hearing. PLUS, if you do have a non-family Conservator, that person is usually an attorney.
Unfortunately, people do not think about or look into these things until it happens to them.
Again, you are incorrect. The different scenarios created are many. Many of these situations are no more than planned litigation schemes.
You may be from a different state so probate may be a special division of Superior court. Not so in CT.
You said, " Plus the estate of the conserved person pays some sort of Court fees for every hearing."

Here's a comment which was on another forum:

" On a radio program a few days ago, was an attorney, promoting his upcoming seminar on Living Trusts ( if considering, ask about any caveats, how trusts can be broken), which have been found NOT to be inviolate.

He was asked some questions and I believe he said, "the costs of probate courts (in CT.)is $39,000,000.00 per year. The state brings in $33,000,000.00 from estates."

Judges of the 117 courts receive a pension, Health Insurance and a paycheck. If I remember correctly he said, "they charge a fee which is set statutorily." (Heh, Heh). The host said, "like a tax?" Attorney said, "No, not really." ( A tax? That reminds me of Superior court Judge Gormley's words to Waterbury Probate Judge Brunnock in the Daniel Gross' case (he had been "incarcerated" in a nursing home for 10 months), when he said, "that's like taxing someone who comes to visit the state for a few days)." Judge Gormley set Daniel free and he went to his home in N.Y. state.
Attorney said, "the more you (judges)bring in, the more you get." Some judges work part time, and then operate their private practices at the very same time. What an incentive!! Host asked, "What percentage do they get?"
Attorney, "Well, it's rather complex." Yes, it is. It's VERY COMPLEX WHEN YOU CONSIDER ALL THE POSSIBLE/PROBABLE SCENARIOS."

The best plans, executed through probate instruments (Trusts, Wills, POAs Living Wills) are without any value when they are pierced, broken and ignored.
kimmanire

United States

#15 Dec 12, 2008
Simple terms that all should understand.

Guardiansips are supposed to be designed to PROTECT AND PRESERVE, TO ALLOW LEAST RESTRICTIVE FOR THE PERSON WHO IS BEING GUARDED.

Truth to what is really happening is COURTS TAKE OVER AND APPOINT (MOST OF THE TIME STRANGERS, AS ACCORDING TO THE COURTS THEY KNOW WHAT IS IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE ELDERLY), THE PERSON WHO IS APPOINTED THEN TAKES THE PERSON PUTS THEM IN A NURSING HOME OR OTHER FACILITY. AFTER THIS IS DONE, THE PERSON WHO IS UNDER GUARDIANSHIP IS PUT ON DRUGS TO "KEEP THEM CALM", THIS MAKES THEM LIKE ZOMBIES. THE GUARDIAN TELLS THE PERSON THAT THEIR FAMILY DOESN'T COME TO SEE THEM BECAUSE THE FAMILY DOESN'T CARE ABOUT THEM,(ALL THE WHILE THE FAMILY IS FIGHTING IN COURT TO TRY TO BE THE ONES APPOINTED AS GUARDIANS). DON'T FORGET THAT THE APPOINTED TELLS THE JUDGE THAT THE REASON THE WARD WAS PLACED ON THE DRUGS IS THAT WHEN THE FAMILY VISITS THE WARD STAYS UPSET FOR DAYS (YES THEY DO, BECAUSE THEY ARE LOCKED UP AND DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHY THEY CAN NOT EVEN WALK OUTSIDE, LET ALONE GO HOME), THIS IS ALSO THE REASON THAT THE GUARDIAN ASKS THAT THE FAMILY ONLY HAVE SUPPERVISED VISITS (WHICH WHEN YOU CALL TO SET THEM UP, THE GUARDIAN HAS ALL KINDS OF REASONS FOR YOU NOT TO VISIT, OR MAKES THEM UP LIKE THATS TO LATE IN THE DAY (3 OR 4 IN THE AFTERNOON), THATS IS EXERCISE TIME AND THEY DON'T NEED TO MISS IT, THAT IS THIS OR THAT. THEN THE MOST HORRORIFIC THING ABOUT GUARDIANSHIP IS THAT FOR ALL OF THESE THINGS THAT ARE BEING DONE IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE "WARD" IS COSTING THEM AND THEIR LOVED ONES EVERYTHING THAT THEY WORKED ALL THEIR LIVES TO EARN, THEY LOOSE THEIR FAMILY, THEIR MONEY, THEIR HOME, THEIR LIVES. NO STRANGERS ARE THE JUDGES FIRST APPOINTMENT OVER FAMILY, BECAUSE THERE IS ALWAYS SOMETHING (MOSTLY LIES MADE UP ABOUT THE FAMILY MEMBERS BY THE COURTS INVESITGATORS, THE ATTORNEYS, OR THE WANT TO BE GUARDIANS) SO THAT THE JUDGE WILL NOT APPOINT FAMILY OR FRIENDS. THE JUDGE ALLOWS THEIR APPOINTED TO CHARGE OUTRAGOUS FEES. ALL THE WHILE THE FAMILY IS NOT CONSIDERED AT ALL FOR ANY ADVICE FOR TREATMENT OR IF FAMILY HEIRLOOMS ARE TO BE GOTTEN RID OF, EVEN A GRANDCHILDS TRAIN THAT THEY PLAYED WITH AT GRANDPARENTS IS THROWN IN THE TRASH, INSTEAD OF ASKING THE FAMILY WHO THE RIGHTFUL OWNER MIGHT BE. THE GRANDCHILDREN ARE NOT ALLOWED TO VISIT. IS THIS WHAT YOU WOULD WANT FOR SOMEONE YOU LOVE OR YOURSELF?

OH LET ME SAY THAT THE MONEY RUNS OUT FOR THE WARD, GUESS WHEN, WITHIN A COUPLE OF WEEKS BEFORE THEY DIE. THE WARD IS PLACED ON MEDICAIDE WHEN THE MONEY IS DOWN LOW ENOUGH TO MEET MEDICAIDE STANDARDS, THEN YOU THE TAX PAYER GETS TO FOOT THE BILL, AND THE COURTS APPOINTED ARE LIVING HIGH ON THE HOG.

IT DOESN'T MATTER THAT THE CONSERVED HAS A WILL, TRUST, LIVING WILL TO LET THE WORLD KNOW OF THEIR WISHES AND INTENT OF WHAT THEY WANT, IF THE COURTS WANT TO IGNOR THESE THEY DO, AND BELIVE ME IT IS HAPPENING ALL OVER THE COUNRTY.

PLEASE FORGIVE ME IF I SOUND BITTER, BUT LET IT HAPPEN TO SOMEONE YOU LOVE, BY STRANGER WHO ARE SUPPOSED TO PROTECT AND PRESERVE, WHO THINK THAT THEY CAN TAKE CARE OF AND THAT THEY KNOW WHAT IS IN THE BEST INTEREST OF SOMEONE, AND DON'T FORGET THAT THEY DO NOT SHOW ANY COMPASSION OR EVEN LISTEN TO THE PERSON THAT THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO CARE FOR.

MAIN POINT I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE IS THAT THIS LITTLE LADY DID NOT DESERVE TO BE KEPT FROM HER HOME AND OTHER FAMILY, IF SHE ONCE SAID THAT SHE WANTED TO GO HOME, SHE SHOULD NOT HAVE TO PAY ONE PENNY TO ANYONE FOR THIS LITTLE "VACTION" THAT A COUPLE OF HER CHILDREN HAS TAKEN HER ON. THEY SHOULD PAY.
Lauren

AOL

#16 Dec 13, 2008
kimmanire wrote:
Simple terms that all should understand.
What Kimmanire has said in this comment is exactly how the conservatorship process happens here in San Mateo County, California. I know because I have been living this nightmare for 11 years. My mother-in-law was placed in a conservatorship based on lies and intimidation. Any probate laws or codes that are supposed to protect our loved ones from this kind of abuse are not reconized. If we try to fight or question these vultures, the more money it costs the conservatee's estate. The amount of money the conservatee is forced to spent on legal fees is the biggest crime of all. I can't understand how any of this conservatorship process helps anyone except the courts and the attorneys.
Hopefully someday soon we can stop this abuse.
Blog critic

Saginaw, MI

#17 Dec 14, 2008
It is a real eye-opening experience to read all these blogs from people who have either no idea about the facts of this case or who choose to distort them. Bottom line, Marilyn received excellent medical care both in Washington D.C and Greenwich Ct. She resided in one of the foremost assisted living facilities in the country at The Greens. She is frail, uses a walker and among her aliments suffers from dementia, diabetes, and needs 24/7 care. Her new home at another assisted living facility in Michigan, while not the same quality of The Greens, provides the care available at an assisted living facility. She did not and could not receive this level of care from the caregiver in her home. If bloggers ignored the drama about the court system and focus on Marilyn's care, the negative comments should end.
what a world

Flushing, NY

#18 Dec 15, 2008
sheepdog wrote:
<quoted text>You are incorrect. Non family members (attorneys) are appointed as Conservators either "of the person" or "of the estate," almost exclusively.
When family members are available? I don't know where we could come up with hard statistics, but this is not my experience and not what I have heard from a number of attorneys involved in probate matters. Perhaps I am hearing about an unrepresentative sample, or in varies throughout the State, but I don't think so.
sheepdog wrote:
<quoted text>
There are many scenarios, many stories, many testimonies, many records that dispute what you've said here.
Oh, no doubt there are always many stories to dispute a general tendency, but, again, I do not know where we could come up with hard numbers to demonstrate which is more common.
sheepdog wrote:
<quoted text>That is what I've seen, since some family members are kept from knowing anything about the disbursment of the estate until a final accounting.
The Conservator of the Estate must, by law, submit an accounting of the estate every three years. Probate Court records are public. If the Conservator does not file the report, interested parties have the right to demand it or ask for the persons removal.
sheepdog wrote:
<quoted text>"The Courts tend to favor family members as overseers (what do you mean by OVERSEERS?), even when family members are reluctant or claim they cannot do the job properly."
Since the "goal" is supposed to be to protect the person, and preserve the estate for it's RIGHTFUL beneficiaries, are you telling readers that the court would appoint a reluctant family member????
Yes. That certainly happens.
sheepdog wrote:
<quoted text>
That flies in the face of the "court's" stated purpose.
Not really. The general view of society and government in the United States continues to be that family members will have the best interests of a person in mind.
what a world

Flushing, NY

#19 Dec 15, 2008
sheepdog wrote:
<quoted text>Again, you are incorrect. The different scenarios created are many. Many of these situations are no more than planned litigation schemes.
You may be from a different state so probate may be a special division of Superior court. Not so in CT.
You said, " Plus the estate of the conserved person pays some sort of Court fees for every hearing."
When a Conservatorship is granted in the State of Connecticut, the two appointments are made as I stated, no matter what the scenario, no matter that it is a planned litigation scheme on someone's part.
the truth blog by blog

Salt Lake City, UT

#20 Dec 15, 2008
Blog critic wrote:
It is a real eye-opening experience to read all these blogs from people who have either no idea about the facts of this case or who choose to distort them. Bottom line, Marilyn received excellent medical care both in Washington D.C and Greenwich Ct. She resided in one of the foremost assisted living facilities in the country at The Greens. She is frail, uses a walker and among her aliments suffers from dementia, diabetes, and needs 24/7 care. Her new home at another assisted living facility in Michigan, while not the same quality of The Greens, provides the care available at an assisted living facility. She did not and could not receive this level of care from the caregiver in her home. If bloggers ignored the drama about the court system and focus on Marilyn's care, the negative comments should end.
What is amazing is you should have focused on her care and then maybe you could have enjoyed your own mother's life and golden years. But instead you decided to cross over to the dark side. Your mother was receiving excellent care, was an integrel part of a loving household that respected her and selflessly cared for her. She never fell in her own home, but you fail to mention that she was taken to the hospital numerous time while at the Greens for falling. That would all be recorded in hospital records. Bloggers should not ignore the court drama, the abuse of this elderly lady, the lies that perpetuated the demise of her livelihood and estate and most of all the criminal activity of kidnapping and incarerating her in D.C by Christine Rales and then Lin Higgins.

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