PROVIDENCE, RI (WFSB) - A man whose family believes he is behind the deaths of his grandfather and mother continued an insurance claim battle in court on Wednesday.

Nathan Carman's attorney claimed during a civil trial on both Tuesday and Wednesday that his client's boat, The Chicken Pox, was in poor condition when it was bought.

The insurance companies, on the other hand, are refusing to pay the claim and said Nathan Carman, formerly of Middletown, made suspicious alterations to the vessel before he left Rhode Island with his mother, Linda Carman.

The two departed on a fishing trip in Sept. 2016. The boat sank near Martha's Vineyard.

Nathan Carman was picked up by a passing freighter days later.

Linda Carman was never seen again and is presumed dead, according to investigators.

The trial, which began Tuesday in Providence, RI, will determine if the insurance companies must cover an $85,000 claim from Nathan Carman for the boat.

The companies claim Nathan Carman committed fraud by making faulty repairs and deliberately sank the 31 foot boat.

Marine Surveyor Bernard Feeley said in court on Wednesday that the boat was seaworthy when he inspected it in December of 2015.

"I stand by the report, the boat's in excellent condition," Feeley said

However, Nathan Carman's attorney said in opening statements Tuesday that he intends to prove that the boat was in bad shape before his client ever owned it.

Both sides have 15 hours to present their cases over the next week or so.

Nathan Carman was never charged in connection with the disappearance of Linda Carman.

He was also never charged in the murder of his grandfather, John Chakalos of Windsor.

Nathan Carman's aunts claimed he was behind both during court cases involving a special trust account and inheritance money.

Stay with Eyewitness News for updates.

Copyright 2019 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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