Today’s New York Daily News reports the tale of a brawl with potentially wide-reaching implications for the Administrator of a New York County Estate. The administrator of the 3.1 million dollar estate was arrested for a brawl outside of a New Jersey strip club in which he has been accused of assaulting a police officer. Tow truck operatorJohn Mattarazo was also accused by a cousin of illegally taking thousands of dollars from the estate of the very successful hair care business built up by his aunt Maria Matarazzo.
While a felony would normally automatically exclude one from eligibility as a fiduciary, Mattarazo was given deferred prosecution and was not convicted of a crime. Nevertheless he was appointed the administrator of the estate. Now a cousin, citing his numerous alleged misdeeds has moved to have him removed as administrator.
Were this a case of an executor under a will, a court might be willing to give more credence to the nomination of a fiduciary since we would go to great lengths to follow the dictates of a decedent choosing his own executor. That direction simply is not present where a court is asked to remove a fiduciary who has not adhered to basic standards of fiduciary behavior. Continue to watch this space for more news from the court’s ruling on this attempt to remove the fiduciary.