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Co-op converter prevails.

Co-op attorney and convertor David Goldstick received good news from the Appellate Division last month when it threw out most of a $9 million judgment against him won by his family members.

The lawsuit was initiated after Goldstick, acting as trustee for the estate of Martin Tananbaum, invested trust fund monies in conversation plans in which he was also a partner. His attorney and former law partner, Jerome R. Halperin, of Halperin, Klein and Halperin, said Goldstick was unaware at that time that the investments were illegal.

Goldstick, who was Tananbaum's nephew, had made the investments at the behest of the family, which made money on the deals, Halperin added. The Tananbaum family once owned Yonkers Raceway. Halperin represented Goldstick together with co-counsel Philip Pierce.

Halperin said, "The Appellate Division properly dealt with the Surrogate's findings by throwing out the case and indicating the most now at risk is a couple of hundred thousand."

Certain stock investments were also under the court's scrutiny and the higher court said the beneficiaries, who lost money, could not cite every stock transaction but had to make a case for each one where there was a bad investment.

Goldstick, a leader in the city's conversion market, originally sought to be removed as trustee in 1986. While he represented some 25 percent of sponsor/developer conversions in New York City, he was also an investor/developer himself.

"If there is some sanity on the other sided, it will be settled, but you never know," Halperin added.

Goldstick, who is currently a partner in the law firm of Goldstick, Weinberger, Feldman & Grossman, was one of the leaders in the city's conversion market. While he represented by one account some 25 percent of sponsor developer conversions in New York City, he was also in investor developer himself.

Goldstick originally sought to be removed as trustee in the early 1980s. His legal problems began at that time when a final accounting was made for the estate and it was suggested he post a bond. When Surrogate's Court Judge, Marie Lambert, who is currently under investigation by the U.S. Attorney's Office, heard he had a net worth of $50 million dollars, Goldstick said, "something went off in her head about how much money her cronies could make."

In its ruling, the Appellate Division denied attorney's fees to the plaintiffs' attorneys.

"It's a very, very serious quirk in our system where the Surrogate's have so much power," Goldstick said. "I've been vindicted."
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Title Annotation:David Goldstick
Author:Weiss, Lois
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Mar 25, 1992
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