WELLINGTON, Fla. -- John Goodman's attorney has released a statement regarding Goodman's adoption of his adult girlfriend Heather Colby Hutchins
Goodman is accused of killing 23-year-old Scott Wilson in a drunk driving crash two years ago and faces both criminal charges and a civil suit.
Some critics wonder if the adoption was designed to protect his assets against a wrongful death lawsuit filed against him.
According to his attorney, nothing in the arrangement with Hutchins is illegal and the adoption will have no effect on the civil proceedings.
In an emergency motion for relief filed Jan 26, the victim's lawyers will look to find out the reasons relating to the adult adoption of Heather Hutchins.
Hutchins, also known as Heather Colby, is listed in the lawsuit as the 42-year-old girlfriend of Goodman.
The 6-page suit states the adoption was finalized on Oct. 13, 2011 in Dade County.
"The adoption declares Ms. Hutchins to be Mr. Goodman's child and legal heir, entitled to all of the rights and privileges of Mr. Goodman's natural born children," the suit reads.
It later goes on to state, "While there is nothing unusual about an adult adoption, the critical fact here is that Ms. Hutchins is Mr. Goodman's 42-year-old girlfriend."
The lawsuit considers the adoption of Hutchins as a "game-changer" and as grounds to now include the assets of the children's trust, at least in some fashion, in the punitive damages calculation.
"Significantly, the children's trust provides the mandatory payment of 70 percent of the income of the trust to a child once that child reaches the age of 35," the suit said. "While none of Goodman's natural children have obtained the age of 35, Ms. Hutchins is 42 and is, therefore, immediately entitled to her proportionate share of income generated by the trust (i.e. one-third)."
The order also states that the adoption borders on the "surreal" and takes the court into a legal twilight zone.
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