The SEC is seeking contempt charges against the executor of Charles Wyly’s estate for failing to pay a multimillion dollar fine.
Charles Wyly and his brother Sam were well-known and wealthy Texas businessmen with billions in assets. The Securities and Exchange Commission alleges many of the assets were gained fraudulently.
Before a court could render a judgment Charles Wyly passed away and the case became the responsibility of his estate and its executor, Wyly’s son-in-law Donald Miller.
In February of 2015, the estate was ordered to pay a fine of $101.2 million. That judgment is still under appeal, but that has not stopped the SEC from demanding payment, which the estate has failed to pay.
In its latest move the SEC has asked that the estate be held in contempt of court for not paying up, according to Private Wealth in “SEC Eyes Contempt for Wyly Estate’s Failure To Pay $101M.”
It appears the estate may have made a basic mistake.
While it appealed the judgement, the estate did not request a stay of the judgment pending that appeal. That means the estate has to pay the fine even though a court could eventually decide to overturn the judgment.
This should serve as a reminder to executors everywhere that they need to be very careful how they go about the business of handling the estate. It is important to make sure everything is done properly, especially when the estate is involved in litigation against the government.
A qualified estate planning attorney can help you navigate these postmortem issues.
Reference: Private Wealth (Sept. 7, 2016) “SEC Eyes Contempt for Wyly Estate’s Failure To Pay $101M.”
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