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Trust litigation over digital currency resolves in Florida

Death is the ultimate mystery, and philosophers have spent thousands of years ruminating on where the experience may take us. But there are several questions that have to be answered about death in our world that take more practical forms. One of the questions that interests the others around us is how we leave our bequests and other assets to them or their peers.

Money is often a big part of estate planning, as it is the most convertible asset included in last wills and testaments. We are used to seeing capital in terms of dollars and cents, but the rise of new forms of currency has raised new questions. In a Florida lawsuit regarding the estate of a technology entrepreneur, a dispute arose around the value of computer-generated currency included in his holdings.

The defendant in the lawsuit, who was the business partner of the decedent, apparently took more than a million units of Bitcoin, a so-called cryptocurrency that derives value as a specific unit of information. The data and its value were stored in a makeshift trust that was accessible by both men.

The Florida judge claimed the defendant engaged in "willful and bad faith pattern of obstructive behavior, including submitting incomplete or deceptive pleadings, filing a false declaration, knowingly producing a fraudulent trust document, and giving perjurious testimony at the evidentiary hearing."

Fraudulent dealings regarding trusts can complicate the dispersal of assets in estate plans and extend expensive litigations, which can drain money and emotional strength. Solid and clear estate plans are often the best way to avoid problems after the death of the estate's holder. An attorney can help make the right decisions and record them for posterity.

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