Another One for the Graveyard

April 17, 2017 § Leave a comment

As I have said here before, R54(b) is the graveyard of appeals. Here is one of many posts about it.

The latest iteration is the COA’s decision in Jeffers v. Saget, decided March 21, 2017. In that case, a jury trial in a will contest ended in a mistrial. The chancellor nonetheless entered a “Final Judgment” denying Jeffers’ petition to recover some investment accounts, and Jeffers appealed.

Predictably, the COA pointed out that the chancellor’s ruling disposed of fewer than all of the issues in the case, since the validity of the will had still not been adjudicated. The chancellor had not certified the case per R54(b), and no petition for an interlocutory appeal was filed. Appeal Dismissed.

I get it that it’s better to appeal early and get dismissed than to be told you’re dismissed because you’re late. Yet, the boneyard is filling up.

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