Both of the sons of convicted Ponzi scheme felon Bernie Madoff have passed away. One committed suicide and the other passed away from cancer.
Before their deaths, however, they were sued by the trustee who is in charge of reclaiming funds for Madoff's victims, Irving Picard. Because the suits were not settled, the sons' estates have to defend the lawsuits.
As Bloomberg reports in "Madoff Sons' Fight Over Cash Endures Long After Their Deaths," Picard has gone back to court in an attempt to force the estates to pay the $150 million he claims the sons improperly received as the result of their father's fraud.
The estates claim that Madoff's sons were not a part of the scheme and that when their father confessed to them they went to the authorities. The money they earned while working for their father's business was earned from legitimate enterprises.
The estates also claim that the Trustee had a chance to press his claims in a related case in the United Kingdom and is now trying to get a second bite of the apple. Picard claims that the case in the U.K. was different in scope and that he did not participate in it. He also claims that the son's knew about and profited from their father's scheme.
It can take a long time to close an estate, especially when there are heavily contested claims against it that are potentially worth great sums of money, as this case illustrates.
Reference: Bloomberg (May 9, 2016) "Madoff Sons' Fight Over Cash Endures Long After Their Deaths"