Five-dollar foot-long subs may have catapulted the sandwich fast food franchise, Subway, into financial success, but that doesn't mean the estate of the late Subway founder, Fred DeLuca, is without controversy. As one recent ruling involving DeLuca's estate shows, estate litigation can spring forth after a person passes on.
New Jersey fans of the famous Subway subs may be interested to learn that a judge recently ruled that a developer must pay nearly $13 million to the DeLuca's estate due to a failed attempt on the two parties to construct a community in Florida. The judge determined that $4 million of the award was compensation for breach of contract and $8.7 million of the award was compensation for civil theft. While DeLuca was alive, the parties had agreed to construct a town named "Destiny" on 41,000 acres of ranch land.
The award is not without controversy, however. DeLuca's widow believes the award means her late husband's estate should be granted $12.7 million. However, the developer claims that the $4 million breach of contract award was a part of the $8.7 million civil theft award, not separate from it. The parties will ask the judge for clarification, and the developer may appeal the result.
As this shows, estate litigation can occur to just about anyone. Sometimes it involves a will contest brought by an aggrieved relative, but other times, such as this, it is the continuation of legal troubles that may have plagued the deceased while he or she was still alive. In either case, those who find themselves marred in estate litigation may need the assistance of an attorney.
Source: PalmBeachPost.com, "Anthony Pugliese owes Subway estate $13 million, judge rules," Jane Musgrave, June 20, 2017