Once again, I have spoken too quickly.
After lamenting to the Memorial Business Journal that the NPS plea bargains will deprive consumers and the industry the opportunity to hear how Doug and his crew perpetrated so many frauds, the sole remaining NPS defendant may grant my wish. As the Funeral Service Insider reports that Herr Wulf, even at the risk of life in prison, vows to fight the charges.
I was only following orders!
While the following statement will garner argument from the plaintiffs in the NPS civil trial scheduled next year, Missouri’s infamous Section 436.031 authorized a preneed seller to designate the preneed trust’s investment advisor, and the trustee was relieved of all liabilities for investment decisions. Herr Wulf will take the stand and declare 1) he had a different fiduciary standard than that of the preneed trustee, and 2) that his investment decisions satisfied the requirements of the Prudent Man Rule. When the prickly questions regarding the definition of the fund manager’s client are raised, and whether that includes the consumer and/or the funeral home, Herr Wulf will declare that NPS (Doug) was his sole client and that he was following orders. Unlike the original Nuremberg Trials, this tribunal can call the source for those orders to testify. The world may yet get the opportunity to see Doug squirm and sweat.
(Excerpts from the Memorial Business Journal and the Funeral Service Insider are reprinted with the understanding I will promote that readers should subscribe to each. Please refer to my blog when you do so.)