June 9, 2017

A rural Carroll woman has agreed to undo the changes she made to her ailing father’s financial trust that, at least in one instance, shifted inheritance money away from her brothers, according to court documents.

At stake is more than $900,000 — the wealth that 91-year-old Matthew Neppel, owner of the former Neppel Oil in town, accumulated over the course of his life.

Neppel was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and post-stroke dementia in August.

“It is at this stage that he is physically and mentally deemed incompetent to make appropriate decisions and will, in fact, need assistance for medical and other decision-making processes,” his physician, Dr. Michael Slattery, concluded in a letter that is part of the public court record.

But a month later, his daughter Lisa Danzer, 52, allegedly took Neppel to his attorney to sign paperwork that gave Danzer control of his assets.

She subsequently transferred some of her father’s stock shares to herself and her two sisters and changed the beneficiaries of her father’s numerous bank, insurance and investment accounts, court records show.

Five of her siblings — including the two sisters who benefitted from the changes — sued to block Danzer from making further changes and to revert the ones she had already made.

The dispute had been set for a court trial in January 2018, but Danzer signed an agreement in late April to nullify the changes, including those that “disproportionately benefited Lisa Danzer or her immediate family.”

The extent to which Danzer benefitted from the changes is unclear. Danzer has declined to comment about the situation.

The agreement was revealed publicly in late May when her siblings — Becky Arts, of Omaha, Nebraska; Vicki Dean, of Florida; Craig Neppel, of Coralville; Ronald Neppel, of Kansas; and Scott Neppel, of Omaha, Nebraska — dismissed their lawsuit.

Arts has been appointed as her father’s legal guardian, and Danzer has agreed to relinquish all control over her father’s assets and to never seek control again.

The father was most recently living with Danzer east of Carroll, court records show.