According to a family attorney for late Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who died in a September boating accident, the family will seek to name his newborn daughter, Penelope, as the sole beneficiary to his estate.
Ralph Fernandez, who represents Fernandez's mother, Martiza, confirmed to ESPN on Monday that he plans to make the filing in court within the next week or two, adding another wrinkle to the ongoing legal battle over Fernandez's estate, which is worth an estimated $2 million to $3 million.
Recently, the families of the other two passengers killed in the fatal crash off the shores of Miami Beach filed wrongful death lawsuits against Fernandez's estate. The families are seeking $2 million each.
Ralph Fernandez, who is based in Tampa, Florida, is a family friend of the deceased but is not related. He said his legal team will also petition for Fernandez's mother to be deemed the personal representative to the minor.
Fernandez said the birth of Penelope, the daughter of Fernandez and girlfriend Maria Arias, went smoothly on Friday and that both mother and baby are healthy.
"This has been great for everyone," Fernandez told ESPN when reached by phone Monday afternoon. "This is the only bit of good news in the past five months since the tragedy."
In terms of a timeline for the wrongful death lawsuits, filed on behalf of the estates of Eduardo Rivero and Emilio Macias, Fernandez said he has been in contact with the insurance carrier, Geico, about the case.
"We're evaluating our position in that we're in close contact with carriers," Fernandez said. "They've been remarkably understanding in this situation in the way they've handled it ... they have really bent backward and tried to accommodate every wish.
Fernandez is preparing the family for what could be a messy legal fight ahead but hopes the resolution might ultimately provide closure for what has been a tragic set of circumstances.
"I think, in the long term, even though it has been stressful, this is part of the healing process," he said. "They're battlers. They'll battle."