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Wagman v. Wagman

Other Lower Courts

December 5, 2007

Greg Wagman, Plaintiff,
v.
Jacqueline Bloom Wagman, Defendant.

Editorial Note:

This case is not published in a printed volume and its disposition appears in a table in the reporter.

COUNSEL

Attorney for Plaintiff: Philip Leimgruber, Esq. Caro Associates, PC

Attorney for Defendant Charles Kleiner, Esq.

OPINION

William J. Giacomo, J.

Plaintiff commenced this action seeking an accounting and a judgment directing defendant to pay over all amounts received by her from custodial accounts created for plaintiff's benefit. Following a trial of the unresolved issues, this Court issues this decision and order addressing 29 separate categories of expenses for which defendant reimbursed herself from those accounts.

I. RELEVANT FACTUAL BACKGROUND

During 1992 defendant established several accounts for plaintiff's benefit, which she also funded (collectively hereinafter "the Accounts"). At the time that they were created, the Accounts were controlled by the Uniform Gifts to Minors Act. As the parties agree, the Accounts are now controlled by the Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (EPTL 7-6.1 et seq. [hereinafter "UTMA"]).

In December 1994, defendant was sued for divorce by plaintiff's father, Joel Wagman (Mr. Wagman). Defendant and Mr. Wagman executed an agreement (the Separation Agreement) settling the divorce action in September 1996, although their divorce was not finalized until December of that year.

Plaintiff resided with defendant in the former family home in Ardsley, New York until it was sold in the summer of 1997. Thereafter, plaintiff lived with defendant in Weston, Connecticut, until the Fall of 2001, when Mr. Wagman obtained custody of him.

Over the course of several years, beginning in 1997 and continuing into 2003, defendant withdrew in excess of $140,000 from the Accounts. Complaining that defendant was not authorized to make those withdrawals, plaintiff commenced this lawsuit in March 2005.

On plaintiff's motion for summary judgment, Justice J. Emmet Murphy held that:

Plaintiff is entitled to be reimbursed for all funds defendant withdrew from custodial acts [sic] for expenses that were her personal obligation under the terms of the Separation Agreement, including: all withdrawals for tutors ($1120.00), medical care (opticare and eye glasses, $705.20), and summer camp ($2,710.50). (Post-Trial Exh.1K, Short Form Order, 12/29/05).

All other items of reimbursement that were in dispute between the parties were reserved for trial.

That trial was referred to this Court and was conducted on April 6, 2007. Defendant was the only witness who testified. At the conclusion of the trial, the Court established a schedule for the parties to serve and file their post-trial submissions. With all submissions before this Court, it now considers the specific financial issues in dispute. The relevant facts established by the credible evidence presented during the trial, as ...


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