The electrician who died and left behind $20,794 in a bank account actually also left behind a $240,077 hospital bill, according to his former employer.
Juan A. Gacayan, the former employer and the current administrator of the estate of deceased Eduardo Ocampo David, also claimed that he also paid the Borja Funeral Home $1,571 for David’s funeral expenses and has, to date, incurred $7,000 in legal fees as administrator.
Gacayan, through his lawyer, Joey P. San Nicolas, also disclosed that, upon David’s passing, he, as the court-appointed administrator of David’s estate, communicated with David’s three sisters—Maria Gina O. David-Cuenco, Monalisa Ocampo David, and Marline Ocampo David.
San Nicolas asked Superior Court Associate Judge Joseph N. Camacho to allow the continuing appointment of Gacayan as administrator.
San Nicolas also asked the court to grant and permit Gacayan and his company the opportunity to file their legally incurred claims against the estate, should the court decide to not allow Gacayan continue in his role as administrator or if David’s heirs decide to replace Gacayan.
Before David died, he had a stroke and was at the Commonwealth Health Center for approximately two months under 24-hour care.
San Nicolas said that because David had no immediate family on Saipan, Gacayan, through his company, JAG Corp. (CNMI) Inc., assigned its workers to the hospital (graveyard shift) to perform bedside-watch of decedent during his hospital stay.
He said Gacayan’s company paid its assigned workers company time for the watch, incurring 312 employee hours amounting to $2,262.
David was a contract worker of Gacayan from Oct. 1, 2017, to Sept. 30, 2018. He passed away on Oct. 15, 2018.
San Nicolas said that even though David’s employment effectively terminated on Sept. 30, 2018, Gacayan continued to attend to and care for David up to the time of his death and after.
After David’s passing, Gacayan received David’s hospital stay and services bill from CHC. San Nicolas said that Gacayan talked with the CHC administration about the bill and how it was to be paid.
San Nicolas said in the absence of counsel at the time of the filing of David estate’s inventory and for final distribution, it was Gacayan’s misguided intention to forego the filing of a claim on his behalf and on behalf of the company for all the expenses incurred, and proceed instead to a final distribution and offset the expenses.
San Nicolas said that after Gacayan retained him as counsel, it was then that Gacayan received further guidance and advice regarding the requirements of the Rules of Probate Procedure.
San Nicolas said that, based on his advice and recommendation, Gacayan filed the amended petition for letters of administration. He said the prompt filing of the amended petition was not made for the purpose of delay or to prejudice the best interest of David estate. San Nicolas said it was made because it is the proper thing to do to correct the deficiencies that were made by Gacayan’s prior legal representation.
San Nicolas said that, based on the breakdown in communication and access to Gacayan’s prior counsel, Rosemond B. Santos, Gacayan sought the termination of Santos’ legal representation.
San Nicolas said having access to other probate court case filings, Gacayan on his own filed an inventory of the estate and ultimately a petition for decree of final distribution.
San Nicolas said that, in retaining Santos as counsel, Gacayan fully disclosed to Santos about David’s family connection.
San Nicolas said Gacayan believed and understood then, and still believes, that David is unmarried and has no children.
San Nicolas said Gacayan fully disclosed to then-counsel Santos about his communication to David’s siblings regarding David’s untimely passing.
As to how the contents and substance of the initial court filings were prepared and filed, Gacayan relied on the guidance and counsel of Santos, San Nicolas said.
San Nicolas said Gacayan’s filing of the amended petition to administer the estate now correctly identifies the sibling heirs, which, in turn, allows for any potential creditors to have a 60-day window to ascertain and file, if necessary, claims against any heirs.
Any creditor claim includes Gacayan as well as Gacayan’s company. “Such an opportunity is not prejudicial—it is fair,” San Nicolas said.
David’s six siblings are opposing Gacayan’s request to remain as administrator.
The Philippine-based siblings who are listed as heirs, through counsel Charity R. Hodson, asked the court to deny Gacayan’s amended petition to serve as administrator. Instead, the heirs want to substitute Christopher G. Imbo, a family friend of David’s family and a resident of the CNMI, as the new administrator.
Hodson said that Gacayan has no interest in David’s estate, is not an heir of the estate, and has already engaged in repeated breaches of fiduciary duty in the time that he has served as the estate’s administrator.
David, who hails from Pampanga, the Philippines, died at the age of 60. His remains were brought to the Philippines last November.