Nearly two weeks after the death of Rochester real estate tycoon Max M. Farash, the mourning period has ended and the litigation period has resumed.
In recent days, new lawyers have joined the case, requests have been made to delay some proceedings and other requests made to move those proceedings to a new judge. Behind the scenes, legal work needed to transfer almost all of Farash's wealth to his family foundation has begun.
And Farash's grand-nephew, Matthew Aroesty, is scheduled to be arraigned today on a felony charge that he misappropriated thousands of dollars from his great-uncle's company.
Farash, who was 95 when he died in a nursing home on Feb. 28, built a fortune worth an estimated $400 million. He had been declared mentally incapacitated three years earlier, and his business affairs managed by a court-appointed guardian, James C. Gocker.
The guardianship ended when Farash died, but Gocker now is trustee of a trust that will manage Farash's assets.
He said he was handling "all the issues you deal with when someone passes away," though his principal task was determining "how best to make this transition to the foundation so the highest value is actually transferred to the foundation. That is a not-uncomplicated matter."
If estimates of the size of Farash's fortune are accurate, it likely would become the largest charitable foundation in the Rochester area, making millions of dollars of gifts annually.
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Litigation Resumes in Dealings With Fortune of Late Max Farash