Lawsuit: Feinstein Is Victim of 'Financial Elder Abuse'

Suit was filed by daughter on behalf of 90-year-old senator
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2023 7:25 PM CDT
Feinstein Lawsuit Alleges 'Financial Elder Abuse'
Sen. Dianne Feinstein speaks during a confirmation hearing Wednesday, July 12, 2023.   (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib, File)

As the senior senator for California, Sen. Dianne Feinstein is one of the most powerful women in the US—but the 90-year-old is also a victim of "financial elder abuse," according to a lawsuit filed by daughter Katherine Feinsten. The suit filed by the Democratic senator's daughter, who has power of attorney over her mother's legal affairs, seeks the removal of the trustees of the estate of Feinstein's late husband, Richard Blum, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The suit alleges trustees "shirked an obligation to channel $5 million into a marital trust benefiting her mother while offering gifts and debt relief to Blum's three daughters from another marriage," per Politico.

Blum, a financier, was believed to be worth close to $1 billion when he died last year at age 86. The suit accuses the trustees of committing elder abuse by "wrongfully withholding distributions." It notes that the trust's assets will pass to Blum's daughters when Feinstein dies, NBC News reports. It alleges that the trustees' inaction shows they are siding with the daughters, "who stand to inherit millions of dollars that should go to Senator Feinstein if the Trustees never make the required distributions to her." A previous lawsuit filed on the senator's behalf said she was unable to access any of the money to pay for "significant medical expenses" when she had shingles.

A lawyer for co-trustees Michael Klein and Marc Scholvinck denies the lawsuit's claims. The trustees have "acted ethically and appropriately at all times; the same cannot be said for Katherine Feinstein," Steven Braccini tells the Chronicle. "The trustees have always respected Senator Feinstein and always will," he says. "But this has nothing to do with her needs and everything to do with her daughter's avarice." He describes the lawsuit as "unconscionable." (Read more Dianne Feinstein stories.)

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