For those clients who have been known to complain that their legal matters have dragged on interminably, your faithful lawblogger brings you a story about an estate that has yet to be settled after a mere 351 years! As the law blog of the New Jersey firmDonnelly Ritigstein reports, there is major litigation going on in the estate of John Payne who died long before our nation was born.
Apparently, Mr. Payne left some 35 acres to be developed for the good of public education and the rent from167 cottages constructed on the land have provided a steady income stream for that end. The trustees of the estate have petitioned the court to sell the individual units as condominiums and to settle the estate. Others, however, have joined in a series of actions to try and block this from happening, claiming that the testator’s intent to benefit public education would be thwarted.
How will all of this turn out? Hopefully, we will not have to wait another 351 years to learn the outcome of this one!