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In re Estate of Somerville

SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY APPELLATE DIVISION


September 11, 2007

IN THE MATTER OF THE ESTATE OF JAMES SOMERVILLE, DECEASED.

On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division-Probate, Hudson County, Docket No. 282571.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted: September 5, 2007

Before Judges Cuff and Lintner.

Appellants Laura Bryant, Berney Somerville and Lee Somerville, the surviving siblings of decedent James Somerville, appeal from the September 15, 2006 order that denied their motion to dismiss the Verified Complaint to Appoint a Substitute Executrix filed by another surviving sibling of decedent. They also appeal from the October 27, 2006 order denying their motion for reconsideration of the September 15, 2006 order.

The September 15 and October 27, 2006 orders are not final orders. To be sure, the handwritten October 27, 2006 order bears the legend "Final Judgment"; however, the substance, not the form of the order, governs. Both orders are interlocutory. Appeals as of right may be taken only from final orders. R. 2:2-3(a). A party aggrieved by an interlocutory order may seek appellate review by filing a motion for leave to appeal. R. 2:2-3(b). That course was not followed in this case. Leave to appeal is granted sparingly. State v. Reldan, 100 N.J. 187, 205 (1985). We perceive no reason to intrude in this estate matter prior to final disposition. Accordingly, the appeal is dismissed.

Dismissed.

20070911

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