The verdict is in for the Moyer trust dispute in Portland – or rather the judge’s ruling is in: Neither side wins.
Wealthy Portland real estate developer Tom Moyer dropped out of high school and created a dynasty for his family, funding a massive trust ($400M) that became the focus of litigation as his health unfortunately declined. In the family fight for control over who would be the trustee, family members took sides, lawyered up, and marched into litigation.
The judge was not impressed: "I just don’t think (this is what) your mom or dad would have wanted to happen," she said, before ruling that each side had to submit three new names of potential neutral sucessor trustees.
Litigation is expensive, and family litigation is exhausting. Only those involved know if there was an easier way to resolve the matter without a judicial ruling. Sometimes there isn’t; sometimes the parties need to hear from the judge with the black robe. And that’s what makes family fiduciary litigation so challenging – balancing the needs of the client with the realities of the potential legal outcome.