Trusts & Estates

Gay Judge Contends His Dad's Marriage Mandate in Will Violates Public Policy

A Manhattan criminal court judge is seeking approval of a settlement that would invalidate an unusual requirement in his father’s will.

The will denies any inheritance to the offspring of Judge Robert Mandelbaum if the judge adopted the child while single, or if he failed to marry the mother of his child within six months of the birth, the Associated Press reports. Mandelbaum, who is gay, married his longtime partner after a surrogate gave birth to his son. The New York Post and ABC News also have stories.

Mandelbaum claims the will violates state public policy supporting marriage equality by compelling him to enter into a sham marriage. Mandelbaum also argues his partner could be considered the boy’s mother for purposes of the will.

Mandelbaum’s father, Frank Mandelbaum, died in 2007. He founded Intellicheck, the ID verification company. The settlement would give Robert Mandelbaum’s son and two other grandchildren each a share in a $180,000 trust, according to ABC and the Post.

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