The Instigator
lyn280
Pro (for)
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0 Points
The Contender
sweetbabyjesus
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

Palmer should not receive the inheritance from the will.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/28/2014 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 173 times Debate No: 65968
Debate Rounds (4)
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lyn280

Pro

Presiding Earl, J
1) On August 13, 1880, Francis B. Palmer made his will and testament, he left small legacies to his two daughters and left the rest to his grandson Elmer E. Palmer. (1.1.1)
2) Elmer who was sixteen at the time was well aware of what was in the will and was very impatient to receive it. (1.1.3-4)
3) When Francis started to show his intention to change the provisions made in the will, Elmer poisoned Francis. (1.1.4)
4) Now Elmer wants to claim the possessions left to him from Francis. (1.1.5)
5) A will is made to leave certain belongings to whomever the testator issued them to. (2.3.1)
6) The will was not intended to leave things to those who cause the testators death. (2.3.3)
7) Right before the defendant murdered his benefactor, it wasn"t certain that he was going to be the official heir. (5.11.2)
7) The defendant could have died before the benefactor and he could have also lost his right to the inheritance. (5.11.3)
8) The defendant made himself an heir by committing the murder with hopes of receiving the benefactor property after committing this crime. (5.11.4)
9) He intentionally plotted to become an heir to receive a reward for his crime. (5.11.5)
10) He does not have a right to receive a title as heir for his crime. (5.11.7)
11) The defendant received just punishment for his crime. (5.12.1)
12) The punishment doesn"t take anything from him, but it doesn"t reward him for his crime. (5.12.2)
13) The defendant may not use the property that was left for him, and the will, will be null and void on the account of what was left for the defendant for the crime he committed against the benefactor. (6.15.2)

Noncontroversial-
1,2,3,4,5,8,9,11

Controversial-
1) Should the grandson receive the money from the will after intentionally murdering the benefactor for the money?
2) Should the government have the right to rewrite the will, or impose their own version of the will based on these special circumstances.

1)The grandson committed a crime and was convicted for it, and somehow thinks that he should be rewarded for the crime he committed by receiving funds from the will. The grandson knew that he was in the will and because of his greed he took matters into his own hands and took a life of a family member so that he could reap the benefits sooner than later. Mr Palmer was enjoying his life, he was probably towards his end of his life but we don"t know and we will never know because he was robbed of dying from natural causes. He deserved to die when his time was up and not to be killed because of money, land and property. The grandson is selfish to think that he could take his grandfather"s life and then fight to get the money, if a person burns down a house and says that it burned from natural causes, after they get found out should they still have a right to get the insurance money? (4.1.8.)

2)The Courts have the right to legally bind or alter a will at their discretion. The Testator has died and now the courts are the only ones left to translate the will and make alterations if the clauses were tampered with. The implication in any will is that "when I die, I will leave whomever and whatever of the persons choosing" not "if you kill me you get this, that and a third", if this was so then there are plenty of people who would go on a killing spree to receive their inheritance. The law also states that it doesn"t reward anyone for committing a crime. The clause is tampered with because of the implication to the rule, and the courts protect the deceased testators right by not rewarding the person who caused his death in the first place.
sweetbabyjesus

Con

1) The respondent, a lad of sixteen years of age, being aware of the provisions in his grandfather's will,

which constituted him the residuary legatee of the testator's estate, caused his death by poison in 1882.

(6.2.1)

2) For this crime he was tried and was convicted of murder in the second degree, and at the time of

the commencement of this action he was serving out his sentence in the state reformatory. (6.2.2)

3) The appellants' argument for a reversal of the judgment, which dismissed their complaint, is

that the respondent unlawfully prevented a revocation of the existing will, or a new will from being

made, by his crime, and that he terminated the enjoyment by the testator of his property and

affected his own succession to it by the same crime. (6.3.4)

4) But the matter does not lie within the domain of conscience. (6.4.2)

5) We are bound by the rigid rules of law, which have been established by the legislature, and

within the limits of which the determination of this question is confined. (6.4.3)

6) The question we are dealing with is, whether a testamentary disposition can be altered, or a

will revoked, after the testator's death, through an appeal to the courts, when the legislature has,

by its enactments, prescribed exactly when and how wills may be made, altered and revoked, and,

apparently, as it seems to me, when they have been fully complied with, has left no room for the

exercise of an equitable jurisdiction by courts over such matters. (6.4.4)

7) The appellants' argument is not helped by reference to those rules of the civil law, or to those

laws of other governments, by which the heir or legatee is excluded from benefit under the

testament, if he has been convicted of killing, or attempting to kill, the testator. (7.2.1)

8) In the absence of such legislation here, the courts are not empowered to institute such a system

of remedial justice. (7.2.2)

9) I think that a valid will must continue as a will always, unless revoked in the manner provided by

the statutes. (8.1.4)

10) We may concede it to the fullest extent; but still the cardinal objection is undisposed of, that the

making and the revocation of a will are purely matters of statutory regulation, by which the court is

bound in the determination of questions relating to these acts. (8.2.2)

11) The whole of this subject is now regulated by statute, and a mere intention to revoke, however

well authenticated, or however defeated, is not sufficient." (9.1.5)

12) I cannot find any support for the argument that the respondent's succession to the property

should be avoided because of his criminal act, when the laws are silent. (9.2.1)

13) To allow their argument to prevail would involve the diversion by the court of the testator's

estate into the hands of persons, whom, possibly enough, for all we know, the testator might not

have chosen or desired as its recipients. (9.3.6)

14) The laws do not warrant this judicial action, and mere presumption would not be strong enough

to sustain it. (9.3.8)

15) We may not, in the language of the court in People v. Thornton (25 Hun, 456), 'enhance the

pains, penalties and forfeitures provided by law for the punishment of crime.' (9.4.4)

16) Therefore, the judgment should be reversed and the provisions left in the will must be awarded

to defendant Elmer Palmer.

Non- Cntroversial

1,2,3,5,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15

Controversial

6) The question we are dealing with is, whether a testamentary disposition can be altered, or a will

revoked, after the testator's death, through an appeal to the courts, when the legislature has, by

its enactments, prescribed exactly when and how wills may be made, altered and revoked, and,

apparently, as it seems to me, when they have been fully complied with, has left no room for the

exercise of an equitable jurisdiction by courts over such matters. (6.4.4)

4) But the matter does not lie within the domain of conscience. (6.4.2)

1) The matter at hand is weather the courts are able to edit or modify wills against a defendant. The courts do not have the jurisdiction to make decisions on wills, and or alter contracts. The grandson should recieve his money because he is already paying for the crime of murder, the common wealth has been vindicated, therefore to further punish the defendant for this crime is a violation of his rights. The corts also cannot grant the money to the daughters as the courts have no right to decide weather Palmers grandfather intended for them to have it either.

2) Weather or not the courts feel it is morally correct to recive the will is not sufficient to make a decision as they have to opperate within the provisions of the statue which deals with wills and contracts.
Debate Round No. 1
lyn280

Pro

A will is a document that gives instructions for managing a testator"s estate. In order for it to be valid, a will must be in writing, signed and attested by the testator. Palmer wrote the will and the courts enforced it. The law is written vaguely so that lawyers and judges can read in between the lines and apply that law to more than one case. The will was written with the intent of Palmer leaving property and money to his beloved family members after dying of natural causes. He didn"t expect someone to take matters into their own hands to violate his right to life. The law however has an hidden implication that if someone violates that right they will not be rewarded. The Courts are now responsible for the will and they have the governing power to change or modify it in order to help defends the needs and wants of the testator. The courts have the right to do so in order to protect the deceased party, and in protecting him, they made a necessary call to alter the will and remove the defendant from receiving a reward for his crime. The defendant does not rightfully deserve that money both morally and lawfully. Yes the defendant is in prison for committing the crime and yes justice is almost won but only when the defendant walks away with nothing. He started out with something and he lost everything when he took the life of his grandfather in his own hands. We can argue about morals all day, but the law states that it will not reward a criminal for its crime. If that be the case if a bank robber gets away with the cash and hides his money in an undisclosed location, gets caught in the act and serves his time, does the court allow him to get that money when after he serves his time, no because he stole it. The defendant in this case stole that money by murdering his grandfather before he had the time to change the will. In the case we see"

A will is made to leave certain belongings to whomever the testator issued them to. (2.3.2)

The will was not intended to leave things to those who cause the testators death. (2.3.3)

If the statutes left out an important sentence or word then it would be purposely done, and vice versa. (2.3.4)

Lawmakers don"t always perfectly express what they are trying to say, they either write too much or too little so that the judges can read in-between the lines to find the implicit meaning. (2.3.5)

Sometimes a case is purposely vague because the meaning is hidden within and this allows the judge to have reasoning to find a solution (2.4.4)

The reason the law is constructed like that is because you cannot classify a term for every case there would be too many terms and it wouldn"t leave room for everyone but only a specific type of situation. (2.4.5)

To fully understand the right judgment to determine the fairness of the statute, one would guess that a lawyer should forsee the future clause in this case. (3.4.6)

If you couldn"t forsee the future events then how could a reasonable man? (3.4.7)

If a negative occurrence arises from not being too specific then a judge has the right to conclude that the unsuspecting results could not be foreseen by parliament, and thus they have the power to propose the clause based on fairness, although if a situation where the unreasonable man is present the clause doesn"t help him because it isn"t fair to help him get out of trouble that he put himself in. (3.4.14)

These rules that are stated in public policy has a basis in universal law and was never outdated by statutes. (4.7.3)

Under the civil law one cannot inherit property from a will from the sponsor they murdered. (5.10.1)

Right before the defendant murdered his benefactor, it wasn"t certain that he was ever going to be the official heir. (5.11.2)

The defendant could have died before the benefactor and he could have also lost his right to the inheritance. (5.11.3)
The defendant made himself an heir by committing the murder with hopes of receiving the benefactor property after committing this crime. (5.11.4)

The punishment doesn"t take anything from him, but it doesn"t reward him for his crime. (5.12.2)

In Owens v. Owens (6.13.1)

The wife was convicted of being an accessory to the murder of her husband and the holding was that she was still entitled to his dower. (6.13.2)

The ruling for a dower is that the wife receives it when she has survived her husband"s death and thus is at lost for support and protection. (6.13.4)

It doesn"t make sense to make provisions for a wife who claims to be a widow that cannot receive support and protection because of her own willful actions in making herself such. (6.13.5)

A widow cannot acquire property rights and call herself a widow when she intentionally made herself such. (6.13.6)

If the implication isn"t clear enough then there should then be a precedent in the law, that when a will is drafted, it should now contain a clause where, if a party who is to obtain property and money takes the life of a benefactor they will forfeit the right to obtain the reward. In a contract there are tons of implications; in the law of unconscionability, the law has always abided by this without necessarily stating it. This along with the missing clause in the will is evident, the law will not reward a guilty party for their crimes by allowing them to receive the collateral damages that they incurred.
sweetbabyjesus

Con

A will is a document that is written and signed by the testator and as a valid document the courts should enforce it. The intent of the will was to distribute the estate of the testator and whether or not he would want his grandson or his daughters to have the money, is not up for the courts to debate. The grandfather made statements about changing his wills and yet did nothing to change it while he was alive therefore and I quote "The rule is that if the testator lets the will stand until he dies, it is his will" (Goodright v. Glasier) (8.1.8) To answer the statement "The law however has an hidden implication that if someone violates that right they will not be rewarded." In this case the statue does not apply as, although Palmer was murdered in order to receive money, the grandson was already punished by the law for his crime and the courts have no right to further punish him or extend his suffering. There are statues in place for the courts to follow when modifying a will or a contract in general there are specific guidelines on how to do so and the statue must be followed by the court when nulling or making changes to the will. The courts cannot further protect the late testator by looking out for his belongings because the court has no jurisdiction over those matters. The application of this law can only be seen morally correct, but the fact of the matter is that we are governed by written statues that courts must adhere to when making decisions about the cases and not unbiased morals and values.
To refute the statement about the robber, in the case of the robber the money was not awarded to the robber in a previous written will, and if that be the case the robber would probably not be charged with taking his own money, the grandson took action to receive what was already entitled to him in a more speedy manner, weather those routes were righteous or not is up for questioning.
A will is made to leave certain belongings to whomever the testator issued them to. (2.3.2)-
In Owens v. Owens (6.13.1)
The wife was convicted of being an accessory to the murder of her husband and the holding was that she was still entitled to his dower. (6.13.2)
The ruling for a dower is that the wife receives it when she has survived her husband"s death and thus is at lost for support and protection. (6.13.4)- One can argue the same relationship existed between Palmer and Palmer Sr., the grandson whom lived with the grandfather is now at a loss of support and protection.
1) But the matter does not lie within the domain of conscience. (6.4.2)
2) We are bound by the rigid rules of law, which have been established by the legislature, and
within the limits of which the determination of this question is confined. (6.4.3)
3) The question we are dealing with is, whether a testamentary disposition can be altered, or a
will revoked, after the testator's death, through an appeal to the courts, when the legislature has,
by its enactments, prescribed exactly when and how wills may be made, altered and revoked, and,
apparently, as it seems to me, when they have been fully complied with, has left no room for the
exercise of an equitable jurisdiction by courts over such matters. (6.4.4)
4) The appellants' argument is not helped by reference to those rules of the civil law, or to those
laws of other governments, by which the heir or legatee is excluded from benefit under the
testament, if he has been convicted of killing, or attempting to kill, the testator. (7.2.1)
5) In the absence of such legislation here, the courts are not empowered to institute such a system
of remedial justice. (7.2.2)
10) I think that a valid will must continue as a will always, unless revoked in the manner provided by
the statutes. (8.1.4)
16) Therefore, the judgment should be reversed and the provisions left in the will must be awarded
to defendant Elmer Palmer.
Controversial
The question we are dealing with is, whether a testamentary disposition can be altered, or a will revoked, after the testator's death, through an appeal to the courts, when the legislature has, by its enactments, prescribed exactly when and how wills may be made, altered and revoked, and, apparently, as it seems to me, when they have been fully complied with, has left no room for the exercise of an equitable jurisdiction by courts over such matters. (6.4.4)
Mere intention to revoke a will does not have the effect of revocation. (8.1.4)
But the matter does not lie within the domain of conscience. (6.4.2)
The implications made in the rules of uncoscionability are far few, compared to the question of whether the courts are able to intervene in contracts and how far they are able to do so. These questions are also brought up in the doctrine of unconscionability, how can the courts be sure that Palmer Sr. as a reasonable man did not wish for his grandson to have the money even though her murdered him? There are statues in place to aid the courts when solving these matters, implied laws do not take higher baring over written statues, if that was the case one could just use the ten commandments and imply everything else from there.
The courts have no right to further seek revenge against Palmer because he has already served a punishment before the courts, to further punish the defendant is barred by the law. The defendant should receive the money, because once one assumes the courts responsible for the document, one also assumes the courts redistributing and making a new will for the defendant which the courts are not allowed to do, this provision will create a slippery slope on how far the courts can change contracts and intervene in them. In this case the beneficiary is not the deceased himself therefore the courts have no right to vindicate on behalf of the testators daughters.
Debate Round No. 2
lyn280

Pro

lyn280 forfeited this round.
sweetbabyjesus

Con

sweetbabyjesus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
lyn280

Pro

lyn280 forfeited this round.
sweetbabyjesus

Con

sweetbabyjesus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
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