O.J. Simpson’s Executor of Estate Planning Faces Complications with Goldman and Brown Family Payout — Why is This Judgement Still Enforceable After All These Years?

OJ Simpson Post

On April 10, 2024, Orenthal James Simpson (O.J. Simpson) passed away at the age of 76. This event reignited a decades-old civil case stemming from the 1994 murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. In 1997, a civil jury found Simpson liable for their deaths and ordered him to pay a staggering $33.5 million to the families. However, court documents filed in 2022 reveal the families have only received a fraction of the awarded amount – roughly $132,000.

The path to full compensation for the Brown and Goldman families appears further muddied by the complexities surrounding O.J. Simpson’s estate. Malcolm LaVergne, Simpson’s longtime attorney, is currently handling the estate as the executor. Adding another layer of complication is Simpson’s will. It names Simpson’s four children as beneficiaries, but also discourages any challenges. If a beneficiary challenges the will, they’ll forfeit their inheritance and receive only a symbolic $1. Further complicating matters, the full extent of Simpson’s estate remains unknown according to LaVergne.

The lingering question remains – why is this judgement still enforceable after so many years? This is because the Goldman and Brown families have a judgment lien “and are ‘secured debt,’ which will be paid prior to those to creditors of Simpson holding unsecured debt.” As reported by Hannah Fry of the LA Times, “the Goldman family can still file a claim against Simpson’s estate,” but the amount they might ultimately recover is uncertain.

LaVergne initially contested the Goldman family’s claim, raising concerns about the proper exercise of his fiduciary duties as executor. In North Carolina executors have a legal obligation to act in the estate’s best interests, which includes paying valid creditors’ claims. His later decision to meet with the Goldmans suggests a potential shift towards resolving the outstanding judgment.

The O.J. Simpson estate presents a complex legal situation with unresolved civil liabilities. The attorneys at Lord & Lindley have significant experience prosecuting and collecting judgements. If you need assistance maintaining or defending a matter regarding a trust or estate, please give us a call at 704-457-1010 to find out how we may be able to help you.  For more information regarding our firm, attorneys, and practice areas, please visit our website at www.lindleylawoffice.com.

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