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In re Probate of

Decided: April 15, 1985.

IN THE MATTER OF THE PROBATE OF THE ALLEGED HOLOGRAPHIC WILL OF ESTELLE B. COHEN, DECEASED


On appeal from the Superior Court, Law Division, Probate Part, Middlesex County.

McElroy, Dreier and Shebell. The opinion of the court was delivered by McElroy, P.J.A.D.

Mcelroy

[200 NJSuper Page 539] Appellant Faye Cohen challenges the probate of the holographic will of her deceased daughter, Estelle Cohen, contending the will is a conditional testamentary disposition void because the condition has not been fulfilled. The trial judge held that Estelle's will was intended to be a permanent testamentary

disposition and admitted the will to probate. Faye Cohen appeals. We affirm the oral decision of Judge Robert A. Longhi.

The parties stipulated that the will was written and duly executed by the decedent and no issue is raised as to its authenticity. The operative facts follow.

In January 1982, Estelle Cohen, who was suffering from kidney disease and receiving regular dialysis treatments, arranged a Florida vacation at the home of her cousin, Rosalie Niemtzow. At that time Estelle shared her Perth Amboy home with her mother, the appellant. Estelle was unmarried and had no children.

On February 11, 1982, one day before she was to leave for Florida, Estelle wrote the following will:

2/11/82

To whom it may concern;

In the event that something should happen while I am away. I wish to state forever & eternity the following:

1. All my debts are to be paid in full.

2. My mother living with me is to be kept in the house until such time as she is no longer capable.

3. My house is to go to Eleanor Dunay. Its contents divided between Joseph, Marianne & John with one exception that is the china cabinet ...


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