Despite pleading guilty to bank fraud, Diane Hathaway to collect nearly $100K pension
Between now and when she's sentenced for bank fraud, former state Supreme Court Justice Diane Hathaway will have an income thanks to her first pension check from the state of Michigan scheduled to arrive in February.
Hathaway, 58, pleaded guilty to bank fraud on Tuesday for concealing assets, including a home in Florida, while claiming financial hardship in a Michigan real estate deal. The financial hardship claim allowed her to use a short sale to unload a Michigan house at a price below what she and her husband owed on it. Reportedly it wiped out a $600,000 debt.
May 28 has been set for Hathaway’s sentencing. She is facing up to 18 months in prison for the fraud. Hathaway likely will have received additional pension checks by that time.
Although estimated at around $98,766, the exact amount of Hathaway's annual pension has yet to be confirmed. She turned her retirement paperwork in to the Office of Retirement Services on Dec. 20, in the midst of the fraud scandal. Less than three weeks later, on Jan. 7, Hathaway announced her resignation from the court, effective Jan. 21.
"It hasn't been processed yet,” Department of Technology, Management and Budget Spokesman Kurt Weiss said Wednesday, regarding Hathaway's pension. "It will need to be finalized by February 12, in order to have her February check sent out.”
Hathaway was elected to the high court in 2008 in an upset victory over then-Chief Justice Cliff Taylor. Her campaign was highlighted by ads labeling Taylor as the "sleeping judge," based on a false claim that he had dozed off on the bench during a case.
Before her time on the state's highest court, Hathaway was a Wayne County Circuit Court Judge. She was first elected to that position in 1992.