Archer Estate & Trust Litigation Law

In re Passarelli Family Trust, 206 A.3d 1188 (PA Super 2019) The Superior Court of Pennsylvania reversed a decree entered in the Orphans’ Court Division of the Court of Common Pleas of Chester County granting the petition of Margaret Passarelli to terminate an irrevocable trust (the “Trust”). Joseph and Margaret Passarelli were married on November 27, 1998 and had two children. In the spring of 2015, at the behest of her husband Joseph, Margaret agreed…
In re the Estate of Connolly, No. A-3855-17T1, 2019 WL 1578804 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. Apr. 12, 2019). This case involves a purported will drafted by an attorney who never met the decedent.  The attorney drafted the will based on a telephone conversation he had with the decedent, who was then ninety (90) years old and in fragile health.  The decedent died the day after that telephone conversation. The Appellate Division affirmed the trial…
De Paul vs. Estate of De Paul, A-0887-16t2, 2019 WL 1831554 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. April 25, 2019). This action considered the reach of the entire controversy doctrine. The dispute stemmed from the disposition of a residential property in Mays Landing owned by the decedent, Catherine De Paul (“Catherine”). Catherine died testate in December 2011 and according to her 1999 will, the property was to be held in trust for her son, Anthony De…
Tom Petty died of an accidental drug overdose at age 66, on October 2, 2017. Despite having an estate plan, his widow and his daughters from a previous marriage are now in a battle over the implementation of that plan. Petty established the Thomas Early Petty Living Trust, which appointed his wife Dana York Petty as sole trustee – giving her control over managing the Trust assets. However, the Trust document also requires her to…
The Daily Mail reported that a Los Angeles judge ruled that Steve Bing and Elizabeth Hurley’s son Damian Hurley, 17, and his half-sister Kira Kerkorian, the daughter of Steve and former tennis pro Lisa Bonder, are beneficiaries to their grandfather,  Dr. Peter Bing’s, trust.  The trust is set to terminate in October 2020. Dr. Bing tried to cut the two out of his trust by attempting to clarify his interpretation of the term “grandchild.”  Dr.…
Archer Partner Anthony R. La Ratta was recently appointed Chair of the National Conference of Lawyers and Corporate Fiduciaries Committee of the American Bar Association’s Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section. His term will begin September 1. As Chair, Mr. La Ratta has overall leadership responsibility for the Committee, which focuses on the bar’s interaction with corporate fiduciaries. Composed of representatives of the American Bar Association and representatives of the trust division of the…
Archer attorney, Melissa Osorio Dibble, a member of the firm’s Estate and Trust Litigation Group, was reappointed Vice-Chair of the Probate & Fiduciary Litigation Committee of the Litigation, Ethics and Malpractice Group of the American Bar Association’s Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section. Her new term will begin September 1. As Vice-Chair, Ms. Dibble is a member of the leadership team who will review and study recent developments related to estate and trust law, including,…
Archer Partner Steven K. Mignogna was recently appointed a Member of the following administrative committees within the American Bar Association’s Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law, effective September 1: Continuing Legal Education – The Continuing Legal Education Committee plans programs for the Section’s national meetings. Groups and Substantive Committees – The Committee on Groups and Substantive Committees facilitates the operation of the Section’s Groups and Committees. National Conference of Lawyers and Corporate Fiduciaries…
Archer attorney Melissa Osorio Dibble has been installed as 2nd Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Estate and Financial Planning Council of Southern New Jersey (EFPCSNJ). Ms. Dibble was sworn in at the Council’s Annual Installation and Awards Dinner on June 13 at Tir Na Nog in Cherry Hill. Ms. Dibble previously served as Secretary for the Council. The EFPCSNJ was established in 1975 and works to provide a better understanding of…
IMO Estate of Lucy G. Kershak, Docket Nos. A-2897-17T3, A-4402-17T3, 2019 WL 1976066 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. May 2, 2019) This case considers whether summary judgment is appropriate when a complaint opposing probate of a will is not timely filed. In 2008, the decedent executed a will prepared by her long-time attorney. The 2008 will provided decedent’s stepdaughter, brothers, her nephew James and her niece Frances, and created a trust for decedent’s horses, who…