Scirocco Law recently represented a homeowner who passed away in April 2019. Over two months after the Decedent’s death, a pedestrian tripped and fell outside of the home where the Decedent’s family still resided. The injured pedestrian brought a lawsuit against the Decedent for the trip and fall. Scirocco Law moved to dismiss that claim arguing that, under the recent Appellate Division case of Repko v. Our Lady of Lourdes Med. Ctr., Inc., 464 N.J. Super. 570 (App. Div. 2020), the injured pedestrian had no legal cause of action against an individual who had died before the filing of the lawsuit.
The trial judge initially denied the motion to dismiss, but Scirocco Law filed what is known as an “interlocutory appeal” with the Appellate Division. Interlocutory appeals are very rarely granted, but in this case the Appellate Division found that the appeal was justified. The appellate court vacated the trial court’s order and remanded for a new hearing. When the matter returned to the trial court, it was reargued and, in a victory for Scirocco Law’s client, dismissed with prejudice.