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Kinkade's Girlfriend Seeks Damages, Tries to Enforce 'Holographic' Wills

The artist's girlfriend and his estate are battling over whether the issues surrounding the case should be litigated in open court or in closed arbitration proceedings.

The estate of the late American painter Thomas Kinkade sought Tuesday to compel a dispute with his live-in girlfriend, Amy Pinto-Walsh, over the artist's medical directive, be resolved in closed arbitration. 

Douglas W. Dal Cielo, the attorney representing Pinto-Walsh, said Kinkade gave his client a durable power of attorney for health care, including authorizing her to control the disposition of his remains.

However, Pinto-Walsh said in a Santa Clara County Superior Court declaration that she wasn't allowed to do so after the prolific artist, one of America's most famous painters, died the morning of April 6

"We believe she's entitled to damages for that misconduct," Dal Cielo said. He said that a jury or an arbitration panel would have to decide on compensatory and punitive damages for his client because of the alleged violation.

"We intend to pursue a claim for that," Dal Cielo said. "The opposition wants that in front of an arbitration panel where all proceedings would be confidential. We argued this morning to have it litigated in open court."

"Granting petitioners' request to compel arbitration would be contrary to fundamental principles as well as inequitable and unconscionable," Pinto-Walsh's attorneys wrote in court documents obtained by Los Gatos Patch.

The hearing took place in Judge Leslie Nichols' chambers at the civil division of the Santa Clara County Superior Courthouse in downtown San Jose.

Representing Pinto-Walsh were Dal Cielo, Brian M. Affrunti and Sonia M. Agee with the Mountain View-based Burke, Willliams & Sorensent, LLP law firm.

The estate, also known as Windermere Holdings, LLC, includes the painter's widow, Nanette Kinkade, and Kenneth Raasch, co-trustee of the estate.

The estate is trying to get all of the claims filed by Pinto-Walsh litigated in private arbitration, a stipulation the estate contends is part of a confidentiality agreement she signed Feb. 25, 2011. Attorneys Dana Levitt and Daniel Casas represent the estate.

Judge Nichols heard the argument and took the matter under submission for 90 days. If the judge grants the estate's wishes, the panel will deal with the issues behind closed doors. If he denies the estate's request, the claims will be adjudicated in open court. The judge will issue the ruling in writing, according to the court clerk.

Amy Pinto-Walsh's Declaration

The Pinto-Walsh court file is about three inches thick. It contains several pleadings or court documents, including an eight-page declaration she wrote as well as Windermere Holdings' objections to her response.

Pinto Walsh's declaration states she met Kinkade in October 2010, about six months after Nanette Kinkade supposedly filed a petition for legal separation from him in Santa Clara County Superior Court.

"Thomas had a dream of taking his talents and visions internationally and, in particular, to Asian markets, and to use his talents and celebrity for philanthropic purposes. We discussed this vision in detail and I offered my ideas and insight," she wrote.

Kinkade viewed Pinto-Walsh, being of Indian decent and raised in Kuwait, as "a tremendous resource in reaching out to other cultures" to carry out this expansive vision, she said.

She also wrote that because of her professional experience, including several projects in Asia, as well as her contacts in that region, Kinkade "believed I had the acumen, skills and experience to make his vision of expansion into those markets a reality. Thomas offered me the position" of director of strategic projects," she wrote.

She said she resigned her position at ESG Consulting to work for Kinkade.

Three days later, on Feb. 28, 2011, she and Kinkade hosted John Hastings, CEO of Windermere Holdings, and he told them that the painter's widow had "blocked" her hiring as a company employee.

Confidentiality Agreement

Pinto-Walsh's attorneys say the validity and scope of a confidentiality agreement under which the estate seeks closed arbitration is questionable.

On Feb. 25, 2011, Pinto-Walsh was presented with the agreement after she had accepted Kinkade's offer to be director of strategic projects for the Kinkade Company. She signed the agreement.

However, Pinto-Walsh's attorneys claim that three days later she learned she would not be hired by the company, voiding the agreement.

Planned to Wed in Fiji

In late 2010 and early 2011, Pinto-Walsh wrote that her relationship with Kinkade grew "very serious."

"This was a tumultuous time in both of our lives. Thomas was dealing with the pending legal separation with Nanette ... ." Then, in January 2011, her eldest daughter suffered a severe ruptured appendix and went into septic shock and required emergency surgery and was in critical condition. She said that Kinkade was instrumental in her daughter's recovery.

"Thomas and I often discussed how fate, or a higher being, brought us together in our times of need. These experiences affirmed our [belief] that we had each discovered our true soul mate in each other."

She also wrote that an agreement between Kinkade and his wife allowed the painter to retain the Monte Sereno home located at 16342 Ridgecrest Way and that Kinkade asked her to move in with him in March 2011.

She also said they were deeply in love, had planned to marry in Fiji and that there were trials and tribulations in their relationship. She attributed this to his stress and frustration due to the legal separation from his wife, child custody and visitation and distribution of marital assets. "This was not an easy time in Thomas' life," she added.

Kinkade needed to be hospitalized for several weeks at Good Samaritan Hospital in San Jose and they learned that because they were not married, the medical staff could not discuss his condition with Pinto-Walsh. He requested that his corporate lawyer, Robert Murray, prepare a health-care directive giving her full power of attorney over all health-care decisions for Kinkade.

Murray supposedly faxed the directive to the hospital and a copy of the document was attached to Pinto-Walsh's declaration as an exhibit.

Unfortunately, she wrote, their plans never came to fruition since the painter was found dead the morning of April 6 and could not be resuscitated.

She said Kinkade's personal assistant, Denise Sander, brought with her the directive signed by the painter Jan. 27, 2012. But his former business partner, Kenneth Raasch, arrived at the residence and helped the coroner remove the body and she was excluded from all communications and plans related to the disposition of his remains.

"Not only was she not able to make plans and go through the grieving process, but she was precluded from attending the funeral services," Dal Cielo said, adding that she's still residing in the Monte Sereno home.

Holographic Wills

In Santa Clara County probate court, where the distribution of assets left by deceased persons' wills is adjudicated, another matter is pending.

Pinto-Walsh has filed a petition to probate the so-called holographic wills made in the painter's almost illegible handwriting where he supposedly gave her the opulent mansion in the small enclave of Monte Sereno, next to Los Gatos, the studio next door and $10 million to run a museum that would showcase all his original artwork for the public.

The Restraining Order

Dal Cielo said Pinto-Walsh, however, was never served the order and was never hired by Kinkade's company, therefore, it became void.

Pinto Walsh's Character 'Defamed'

"They don't know the facts," her attorney said about the large amount of Kinkade supporters who don't believe his client and accuse her of enabling his alcoholism and being a "gold digger" and "home wrecker."

"When the evidence comes out, the people that have painted her in a negative light will be proven incorrect," Dal Cielo stated.

The Kinkade estate issued the following statement Wednesday in response to Tuesday's hearing: “Thomas Kinkade and his wife Nanette initiated and approved a joint estate plan that was final and up to date at the time of his passing. 

"The estate is subject to this formal, written, and irrevocable plan and it will contest any other purported estate planning documents. Ms. Pinto-Walsh signed a confidentiality agreement in February 2011 at the express request of Mr. Kinkade who was concerned about his daughters’ privacy. It is the responsibility of the estate to ensure that Mr. Kinkade’s wishes are honored, including seeking to enforce the arbitration clause in the agreement signed by Ms. Pinto-Walsh.”

Eagle Scout June 15, 2012 at 01:01 AM
Did Amy Pinto or her x bf have jobs while kinkade was alive ? Was their a stream of money that flowed from Pintos greedy hand into her x bfs bank account....again more easy to answer questions !!
Not a Fan June 15, 2012 at 01:04 AM
Go for it, dig up the proof....
Eagle Scout June 15, 2012 at 01:13 AM
Very serious charges are being drafted by the Kinkade legal team. Amy will have her day in court as she has demanded and obviously deserves. Rome is burning!!!
Not a Fan June 15, 2012 at 02:30 AM
Oh, I'm sure they are going for the jugular, let me guess, manslaughter? Wrongful death?
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 03:36 AM
NAF, Wavoka.. So i have been to tommys in los gatos. No the bartender on Jan 9th does not corroborate Gavins story. Gavin is done He will be tried along with Pete and Soseek for manslaughter and fraud. But Nanette and Ken are trying to distort us. we can go after these bastards later. We wills shut them down. For now focus on Amy.. NK will send this to mediation but Amy will fight alone in arbitration. Can we all help her July 2nd? Lets honor Thomas. Please NAF, Ms. Sanchez, Wavoka, Juror..ignore Gavin and Pete and Soseek we will shut them when Amy speaks but right now she can't and i believe NK and her LG peeps are sending this to arbitration but the will are in pobabte which they cannot. Please show up July 2nd for Thomas. This is not about whether you are chrristian or like his art? This is about the last will of a man who loved his woman and was abused by Ken and Nanette. Please outcry and protests for Thomas Kiinkade. This will be a landmark hearing and trust me there is no video at Tommys other than Amy helping him so Gavin go eat a cookie! Pete you want another finger broken? enough of your mafia tactics , you cannot threaten Amy Piinto and her daughters. YOU lived in her home and hurt her child. Pete Jiillo you are sick
Not a Fan June 15, 2012 at 03:58 AM
LGtruthandlight...I hear you...but I'm on the other side of the nation...but I do feel an urgency to pray and pray hard round the clock...there is such an oppressive spirit attached to this case, it's suffocating. I can feel it from here! But I know July 2nd is important to determine the validity of the will? Is the judge waiting for this to determine whether the case will be in private arbitration or open hearing? What exactly are you saying here? When will the confidentiality agreement issue be dealt with in court? I only know of July 2nd and Judge Nicholas' decision within 90 days...
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 04:02 AM
BW,,,, dean baker was fired by Thomas Kinkade through Amy and Denise Sanders because he was partying at Tommys instead of watching Thomas. Apparentlly Dean baker was too busy eating and watching sports on the job billing on TK and Amy. He was security hired by Nanette Kinkade who bought Glenn Cooke and he sold out Thomas and Amy. Amy called Glenn to report Dean lost Thomas but he did not care. He had several complaints about Dean earlier from Thomas and Amy and Denise for him being lazy and a raicist but Glenn kept Dean on to appease Nannette which makes sense. Glenn Cooke cares about his paycheck and not his clients. Small time crook himself. But another grand farce of estate to trap Amy and Thom. Karma is a bitch and Amy did not cave.
Not a Fan June 15, 2012 at 04:02 AM
...or is the validity of the confidentiality agreement central to whether it is arbitrated or in open court?
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 04:02 AM
Amy was furious,she was with her daughters but when Dean lost Thomas Kiinkade who he was supposed to be watching, called a couple of bars found him before his own security and called Dean and fired him. The two guys who took him from Tommys will be called so Gavin enough of your lies- you are going down along with so seek and pete and Tommys of los gatos will tear you down. You stayed at the mansion Pete while you did women behind Jesse's back and you and gavin threatened her and her daughters constantly if she spoke of you or your patrons who cheated on their wives and chicago was the heaven. You will go down but for right now don't focus on this - this is a distraction NK is throwing like a restraining order that was never served. Wavoka... you got this...outcry if this goes to arbitration but trust me Tommys of Los Gatos will back Amy
Wavoka June 15, 2012 at 04:11 AM
@EAGLE SCOUT Here's the challenge you face.... There are 2 diametrically opposed camps in terms of Pinto and TK. One one side there have been 2 or 3 that have repeatedly commented in a crude and vulgar way, offing wild accusations denigrating Amy, but offering nothing to substantiate their story. By their own demeanor, they have thoroughly discredited themselves, to the point there is no reason to believe anything they say, obviously the reason they change their pseudonym so frequently. In the other camp we have Thom's brother, who had very nice things to say about Amy. We have TK's friends who say nice things about Amy, and claim TK loved her. TKs friends claim those denigrating Pinto are immoral characters, one a thief. They claim TK already settled with NK and daughters, giving them the bulk of the estate, which squares with the contested documents. They claim NK was having an illicit affair(s) with other men while she was married. Telling is the fact that Nanette wants to hide everything, apparently for good reason. Telling is the fact that Amy wants everything in the open, suggesting she has nothing to hide. Telling is the fact Amy did not take the easy, less stressful way out, the reported settlement. She instead risks everything to bring forth the truth. The evidence at this point, points strongly in Pinto's favor. You make very strong, slanderous charges, unless you have proof. Do you have proof of what you say? If so, let's hear it.....
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 04:31 AM
As far as her Ex, Thomas bought him in because his daughter Merrit was in love with his cousin. Merritt had rage issues and brutally attacked Amy and her daughters at several occasions. Thomas And Dean Baker told us there are several videos and they begged Amy to not press charges and got a restraining order against NK and Merritt through their divorce lawyers because Amy had to send her daughter away which makes sense in the Police Report. Denise Sanders exec Admin of 15 yrs knows this and there were multiple occasions Merritt would randomly attack a young child, hit AMY and then stalk Thomas and follow him and shout insanities. At Tommys everyone says Thomas told him his daughter Merritt had weight issues and did drugs so he befriended Amys ex to help his daughter cuz she had a crush on her exs cousin. OMG ... This is getting better than a hollywood and bollywood script. But no money went in bank accounts - Merritt Kinkdade attacked a minor, Amy , cab drivers and multiple people and her ex and his cousin know the truth. So Gavin please have NK and Ken call him. It will only help Amy....TK speaks from the grave,,, busted, YOU are Amy's best witness so keep bringing up garbage and we will investigate and will find you guilty
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 04:47 AM
we love Gavin. Do not block him Ms. Sanchez, with every accusation he is incriminating himself but he is too stupid to know it. He is our best investigative reporter without knowing it. Gavin keep the lies coming, and we will take them to court and bury you and Nanette
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 05:02 AM
July 2nd is a separate issue. They cannot send the will to arbritration. But the rest of the issues, NDA, medical directives, Linda and Dean Bakers lies they will send to arbitration but that ok, Amy is Thomas's voice and I do not believe she is in Los Gatos or the mansion but she will return for her days in court to speak for THOMAS. I have never seen anyone hated by the world with lies but will fight for Thomas. She loved him poor misguided soul. She wants the world to hear the truth about Merritt Nanette, Ken, Linda, Dean, Pete, Gavin Soseek anyone their lawyers interrogate her on. She will speak the truth and they will trap themselves because she just loves THOMAS.
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 05:06 AM
Brilliant but you are speaking to Gavin aka NK! First is racist bully latter rich bully either way they cannot reciprocate
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 05:11 AM
Soseek, Pete is all this worth Gavin? We will start yelping you next really???? How does Grandma feel, she is a christian woman. YOU want us to call her fariba, selby, naomi, Joe, Bill, Larry, Steve, dan, dana her many men, dave etc etc. You are opening this can of worms now soseek and pete. Soseek always said so seek and you shall find the truth, we did through Gavin, Thx Soseek. You got away with framing Joe downing, You cannot do this to amy pinto...thomas kinkade will not allow it and neither will your mom
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 05:13 AM
will do shortly, they are coming after us
juror June 15, 2012 at 05:14 AM
Wavoka..... Only time will tell when the true nature of Thom's last Two years will come to light for the world and his adoring fans to see. In his owen words, He was saying " .....I can't bleave I have a new lease in life. I never imagined I will be happy again..." again and again .
LGtruthandlight June 15, 2012 at 05:20 AM
Unfortunately, Nanette and her high priced attorneys fought so that not only the NDA but the medical directive will be in arbitration. I have no clue how a medical directive issued a year later by Thomas's attorney can be in the same NDA but hey she is rich rich rich. got her lions share in the almost done divorce and now gold dagger trying to work the courts. But she beat down Thomas but lets see if she can Amy, i say not because Thomas would not have left her legacy to her. Mark 14.9 is what he told us so lets pray now.
Not a Fan June 15, 2012 at 06:38 AM
You mean the Nanette, Ken Raasch co-trustee legal team....whether you represent Thomas Kinkade's last wishes or not has yet to be determined....Nanette I presume?
juror June 15, 2012 at 07:01 AM
You See Mr. Eagle Scout ( Gavin )....Upon Amy Pinto's request, Once the body guards were hired Thom was protected from all the vulturous individuals like you, and few others, includung Nannett. Dean Baker was the Moll for Nannett.
LGllightandtruth@gmail.com June 15, 2012 at 07:05 AM
Ms. Sanchez, you are brilliant and by allowing Gavin on this forum to ignite his hatred for amy, naomi, claudia, vida, jesse etc. smart beautiful women with color who all fought off his obsessions because we see him as slow shrek you have uncovered a national expose. Whatever happens with Amy and Thomas the real story lies at Chicago and Gardinos and their extortionist fraudulent practices while blackmailing and harming their rich patrons. Mis. Sanchez if it walks like a duck it must be a duck and baby Gavin is a stool pigeon he quacked to hurt Amy but incriminated the Jillos. Pease follow this . Call Amys lawyers and ask about the Jillos - you could win a journalistic award for shutting the mafioso
LGllightandtruth@gmail.com June 15, 2012 at 07:20 AM
Brilliiant... We love Gavin/NK?ken?Merrit/Linda.,...,hook and bait you are on the right trap. We were all there..... They framed Joe Downing while Soseek and Pete and Gavin riobbed Thomas. DO not let go... Amy will be back July 2nd inspite of Gavins claims she is in the mansion. I am at Tommys right now and everyone wants her to win and will crucify chicago, gardinos and gavin. Help her win and they will be shut down. She will take no prisoners. Remember what TK said about her. If you met her you know she grew up in Kuwait. Ken Nanette Merritt Linda Pete Gavin are nobody. Her dad was killed by Saddam - You think these LG bastads will run her after kiilllin her man? GO JUROR GO
LGllightandtruth@gmail.com June 15, 2012 at 07:52 AM
@SOSeek/Gavin You had Thomas and Amy pray for Sarah and they did. You are now having Gavin do this to AMY???? Karma Soseek, you want Sarah to suffer like Pete and Gavin and Nanette and Merrit did to Amy's daughters? THOMAS will haunt you and Sarah
LGllightandtruth@gmail.com June 15, 2012 at 07:56 AM
Juror, NAF and Wavoka do not sound local but they uncovered an expose. Ms. Sanchez please help us. GO to Chicago and Gardino and interview people. Find Ms. Pinto ask her about SOseek and Pete and the women Pete bought to the Kinkade mansion. Denise and Amy will testify. Can you find them for us. Poor Jesse. Pete made her a fool in town and Gavin helped.
LGllightandtruth@gmail.com June 15, 2012 at 08:03 AM
so Juror, you are local like justice,...found some stuff about Merrit Kinkade and why they want this in arbitration. Apparently she attacked Amys child - a 23 year old attacking at 16 year old and then they paid off several cab drivers when Merrit stalked Amy and attacked her and Dean Baker stood by and never defended Amy. THIS is huge there is apparently video footage at the airport. I am going there now. OMG> this explains why they want arbitration- pyscho daughter attacking minor, Mom sleeping with guys whose last names she does not know while kids in next room and oh wait the lovely liar Linda who is neurotic per Nanette but her daughter Juju loved Amy and Thom so when Ms. Pinto's lawyers depose her oh ya ken videos and pictues don't lie. Hope you are not starring in any of them Kenneth Raasch,,,,,misguided painter of light
Not a Fan June 15, 2012 at 03:34 PM
I believe once Nanette decided their relationship was through and especially felt further threatened by Amy's presence in Thom's life. she began a systematic "fleecing" through Trust decisions (attempt to liquidate galleries?) and separation/divorce court case...and had reportedly kept Thom's daughters from seeing him...clearly looking out for her own posterity...Ken Raasch's "close" friend Eric Vescuso's reflection that Thom left a "train wreck" (last article) alludes to deep financial duress probably for all parties involved...Amy just presents a further complication to the mess they were already facing...to unravel this woe-begone story, one needs to follow the money trail with a timeline of relationships and actions...significant digging can be done through various court case records on file at the court house, as well as recorded land records,...and there are MANY land recorded transactions under various combinations of their names.
georgia June 15, 2012 at 05:18 PM
He didn't leave his family. His wife left him. It was the disease affecting him. He loved his family. I agree 10 months or 18 months does not entitle am walsh a home. She is not entitled to a thing. She did not love she was using him. so sad. She was hard hearted before he was cold and threatened to take him down within hours of his death. She should be in prison for exhortion, fraud, tresspassing and possible murder.
Wavoka June 15, 2012 at 07:08 PM
@Georgia If the bulk of Thom's estate has already gone to Nanette and his children, and Thom truly wished the remainder of his estate to go to Amy, isn't that were it show go? Is it right for someone else to dictate what Thom should do, or wished to do with his property? That would not seem respectful of Thom's wishes, nor would it seem in keeping with the laws of our land assuming those facts true. Do you disagree with those principles?
Justice June 16, 2012 at 08:58 AM
Soseel u did not speak.., in the declaration Amy wrote when it pertained to mafia bros on behalf of mike Pelzel pretended to love fat Merritt.. Everyone knew Thomas paid guys to date fat loser daughter and there palacio videos when NK was drunk snf hit amy. Any has a vm from Merrittt and Ken to pls Bury ttuth
Not a Fan June 23, 2012 at 02:11 AM
New Shelia Sanchez Patch article: http://losgatos.patch.com/articles/who-s-amy-pinto-walsh

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