Madoff Victims May Be Eligible for Early Settlements

Court trustee Irving Picard is initiating a hardship program to help some of <"">Bernard Madoff’s hardest hit investors reclaim money they lost to his massive Ponzi scheme. According to USA Today, Picard is hoping to quicken victim restitution.

Under the hardship program, individual Madoff victims experiencing significant financial hardship will be able to file a special claim that seeks “an accelerated federal insurance payment,” Picard announced. The deadline for such claims is July 2, USA Today said.

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Each applicant will be eligible to qualify for up to $500,000; program guidelines ban feeder fund requests and requests from businesses that moved investor funds to the disgraced financier, USA Today explained. The federal Securities Investor Protection Corporation insures clients of failed brokerages, providing up to $500,000 per investor, based on losses.

Picard will make his assessments based on “financial indicators” that include a victim’s “inability to pay for basic living expenses or medical bills, personal bankruptcy declarations, or a need to return to work at age 65 or older,” said USA Today, which noted that a number of Madoff victims lost life savings. Some former Madoff clients were left so financially bereft they had to sell off property and remaining assets, some had to resort to living with relatives to make ends meet, and others were forced into seeking post-retirement careers.

Night at the Museum movies The Legend of the Tamworth Two rip Picard will notify applicants by mail within 20 days following filing, said USA Today, explaining that because Madoff’s financial records remain incomplete, some applications could take some time.

Picard has been charged with locating and liquidating Madoff’s assets in a bid to recover funds for defrauded investors. So far, he has located just over $1 billion, considered just a fraction of what Madoff’s clients lost to his scheme. Experts have said previously that victims of frauds like the Madoff Ponzi scheme usually only recover pennies on the dollar. The $1 billion are slated for pro rata distribution to scammed investors, reported USA Today. Picard is in the process of suing a number of Madoff feeder funds for hundreds of millions of dollars more.

Slap Shot 3: The Junior League dvd Madoff pleaded guilty in March to running the historic Ponzi scheme that globally robbed individual investors, charities, celebrities, hedge funds, and retirement plans. Madoff is scheduled for a sentencing hearing in June in which he faces a maximum 150-year federal prison term.

Most recently, Picard filed a lawsuit against Ezra Merkin, one of several so-called middlemen who recruited investors for Madoff’s funds. Merkin told investors he personally managed three hedge funds: Ascot Partners, Ariel Fund, and Gabriel Capital.

According to charges filed against Merkin by the New York Attorney General last month, Merkin turned virtually all the money over to third-party money managers, including Madoff. According to the complaint, Madoff typically did not disclose to investors, or actively obscured from them, that he was actually managing some or all of the investments.

Acting primarily as a marketer and a middleman, Merkin pocketed hundreds of millions of dollars in management and incentive fees from his investors, and is accused of keeping $2.4 billion of investors’ funds with Madoff despite being aware of irregularities and other glaring red-flags related to Madoff’s investments, according to the Attorney General’s complaint, which also stated that at least two of Merkin’s most trusted colleagues repeatedly told him that Madoff’s returns were too good to be true—one warning it could be a Ponzi scheme.

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