<#if page.ID == "About"> In This Section
<#else> View Our Practice Areas

Will Changes on Deathbed Can Spark Suspicion

The woman convinced party-boy Proskauer partner Harry Goldsmith to marry her as he lay dying of pancreatic cancer - then brought a team of lawyers to his deathbed to rewrite his will, spurned spouse Debra Karlstein claims in a Manhattan Surrogate's Court lawsuit.

If there ever was a real-life tale of a wicked stepmother, this could be it.

As I have noted before, whenever someone gets remarried and changes his estate plan to favor his new wife, there can be bitter feelings between the new wife, the old wife and the children. This is especially true if the new marriage took place while the deceased had cancer and the estate plan was changed in the hospital.

Such is the allegation regarding the estate of Harry Goldsmith, as recounted in a New York Postarticle titled "New gal 'stole' kids $1.5M inheritance: ex."

Goldsmith was a prominent trial attorney in New York. In 2010, he divorced his wife with whom he had three children. He started dating another woman in 2012.

Goldsmith was then diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and married the woman he was dating. Three months later, while Goldsmith was in the hospital, his ex-wife alleges that the new wife brought lawyers to the hospital to rewrite Goldsmith's estate plan in a way that favored herself and effectively deprived his own children of their rightful inheritance.

Whether or not the allegations turn out to be true, this case highlights that even attorneys can make legal mistakes.

If Goldsmith wanted to rewrite his estate plan, he should have done so immediately after getting remarried. This was especially true as he was diagnosed with a potentially terminal disease and did not have time to wait.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Find Out The Difference That Experience And Expertise Makes

Get the peace of mind that you deserve. First, attend a seminar. This will entitle you to a free initial consultation and a discounted estate planning fee. To learn more about our services or sign up for a seminar, contact us online or call us at 866-402-1805. We have offices in Torrance, Orange, Newport Beach, Pasadena and Woodland Hills.

Questions? Contact Us.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Call Now For A Free Consultation: 866-402-1805
  • ${site.data.firmName}${SEMFirmNameAlt}
  • Main Office: Torrance

    Torrance Office
    990 West 190th Street
    Suite 500
    Torrance, CA 90502

    Toll Free: 866-402-1805
    Map & Directions

    Orange Office
    333 City Boulevard West
    17th Floor
    Orange, CA 92660

    Toll Free: 866-402-1805
    Map & Directions

    Newport Beach Office
    5000 Birch Street
    Suite 8000
    Newport Beach, CA 92660

    Toll Free: 866-402-1805
    Map & Directions

    Pasadena Office
    790 East Colorado Boulevard
    9th Floor
    Pasadena, CA 91101

    Toll Free: 866-402-1805
    Map & Directions

    Woodland Hills Office
    5850 Canoga Avenue
    4th Floor
    Woodland Hills, CA 91367

    Toll Free: 866-402-1805
    Map & Directions

    Office map