Man Adopts 42-Year-Old Girlfriend

The adoption might be legal maneuver to protect his fortune from a lawsuit.
2:41 | 02/02/12

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Transcript for Man Adopts 42-Year-Old Girlfriend
Of that bizarre story out of Florida 48 year old John Goodman the heir to a fortune worth hundreds of millions. Is adopting his 42 year old girlfriend he's trying to protect that fortune as he faces trial in a lawsuit from manslaughter. In she's -- canning is coming this frozen into this all stems from 2010. Driving -- Goodman was driving drunk ran a stop sign and killed some. If this whole case is just completely bizarre and it's one of those just when you thought -- heard it all. Some legal analysts are actually calling this legal move brilliant because the money he set aside for his children cannot be touched by the courts. But it is raising all kinds of ethical questions the judge in this case called it surreal the victim's family says there in a legal Twilight Zone. John Goodman was living the high life in Tony Palm Beach millions of dollars a beautiful girlfriend. Owner of a celebrity -- polo club. But -- and this happened and now he's embroiled in one of Florida's most bizarre legal cases. The local -- mogul charged in the fatal DUI crash has adopted his girlfriend. As his daughter. You heard right 48 year old Goodman adopted his 42 year old girlfriend making Heather -- his legal daughter. Now he's being accused of exploiting a legal loophole that would protect his millions from a bitter civil lawsuit. It all started in February 2010 when Goodman was allegedly driving home with a blood alcohol level twice the legal limit. He allegedly blew a stop sign crashing his Bentley -- 23 year old Scott Wilson's car causing it to -- into this can now Wilson drowned. Goodman allegedly walked away from the scene and is facing up to thirty years in prison for vehicular homicide -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- parents -- -- -- -- But experts say even if they wind they might not get any money. That's because the majority of his fortune is untouchable. Tied up in a trust fund for his teenage children. But after adopting his long term girlfriend and adding her to the trust she could cash out part of that fortune and she wants share -- with hand here. She becomes a beneficiary of the trust and arguably because she's 42 years old. Is now immediately entitled to 13 share of the trust folks in the legal community are looking at this -- It's either brilliant or it's a crazy -- that could backfire. Goodman's lawyer insists the adoption was designed for estate planning and to guarantee his children's future not to shield his fortune from a lawsuit. A probate court still has to decide on whether the adoption is legitimate or just a sham the parents of the drunk driving victim have filed. An emergency action George and -- thanks very much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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