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Court Decides Disposition of Real Property


In a discovery hearing held before the Surrogate’s Court of the City of New York located in Nassau County the estate is seeking to establish the existence of a leasehold interest in commercial real property and to enforce its provisions. A New York Probate Lawyer said the petitioner has submitted an application to the court for preliminary injunction.

Case Background

The decedent passed away on the 2nd of May, 2004 and is survived by three children, one who is the respondent in the case. A petition has been filed for probate of an instrument that was dated the 2nd of July, 2002.

The preliminary letters testamentary were issued to the petitioner. The instrument provides both of his daughters with a 25% interest in the residuary estate trust. The remaining balance of the trust is bequeathed to several grandchildren in varying amounts.

The decedent was the sole shareholder of a corporation located in Woodside, New York. The shares of the corporation are part of the residuary estate. In addition, the decedent owns the real property where the building of the corporation is located. Long Island Probate Lawyers said this property was sold by the decedent in 1997 for 1.15 million dollars. The president and owner of the corporation that bought the property is also the vice president of the corporation the decedent left behind. He receives a salary as well as a share of profits as stated in a written agreement dated the 26th of June, 1995.

The current owner of the land states that there was never a lease between the owner of the real property and the corporation and that the occupancy of the corporation is based on month to month tenancy. The petitioner is seeking to establish that there is in fact a lease.

The president that the land was sold to issued a thirty day termination notice to the decedent’s corporation. This discovery proceeding was started after this notice was issued. Queens Probate Lawyers said the petitioner argues that if this corporation is successfully evicted from the premises the value of the corporations shares to the residuary beneficiaries will be diminished severely, if not entirely.

In October of 2004, a hearing was held to determine if the petitioner has the right to a preliminary injunction and the matter has been submitted for decision. During the hearing the attorney for the petitioner stated that the course of conduct between the companies indicated that there is a lease possible.

Court Discussion and Decision

In order for a preliminary injunction to be permitted there must be reasonable belief that there is a likelihood of success based on the merits for the case. The standing of the petitioner in this case is dependent on a lease existing between the two corporations.

The petitioner is seeking a deposition from the defendant as well as the records from the corporation. The petitioner should be given the rights to both of these things.

In this case there is a temporary restraining order in effect, so the deposition must take place quickly. The order will remain in effect until a decision in this matter is made.

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