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Estate Disbursement Tracing

When questions arose of financial mismanagement and misappropriated assets from an elderly couple’s $40 million estate by their adult children – a court-appointed guardian hired FSS to trace assets and determine the sources and uses of funds in the estate.

Our forensic analysts used financial records to trace assets through an extensive maze of more than 25 bank and brokerage accounts over a nine-year period. The reconstructed database was compared to supporting documentation including cancelled checks, deposit detail, and invoices. Alternative corroborating evidence including a detailed Day-Timer journal and interrogatories from the adult children were used where traditional supporting documentation was inconclusive or unavailable.

The forensic analysis identified $27 million in disbursements for which the elderly couple received the benefit of only $7 million; The remaining $20 million was disproportionately used for the unauthorized benefit of their adult children. 

The parties were able to avoid litigation and agreed to treat the unauthorized disbursements to the children as an early distribution that would offset any future inheritance. 

If results like this are incredibly important for your practice, talk with our expert.