Cook v. Purtill

*********************************************** The “officially released” date that appears near the be- ginning of each opinion is the date the opinion will be pub- lished in the Connecticut Law Journal or the date it was released as a slip opinion. The operative date for the be- ginning of all time periods for filing postopinion motions and petitions for certification is the “officially released” date appearing in the opinion. All opinions are subject to modification and technical correction prior to official publication in the Connecticut Reports and Connecticut Appellate Reports. In the event of discrepancies between the advance release version of an opinion and the latest version appearing in the Connecticut Law Journal and subsequently in the Connecticut Reports or Connecticut Appellate Reports, the latest version is to be considered authoritative. The syllabus and procedural history accompanying the opinion as it appears in the Connecticut Law Journal and bound volumes of official reports are copyrighted by the Secretary of the State, State of Connecticut, and may not be reproduced and distributed without the express written permission of the Commission on Official Legal Publica- tions, Judicial Branch, State of Connecticut. *********************************************** EDWARD WERNER COOK, TRUSTEE v. GEORGE PURTILL, EXECUTOR (ESTATE OF ADELMA GRENIER SIMMONS) (AC 42198) Elgo, Devlin and Harper, Js. Syllabus The plaintiff, the decedent’s widower and trustee of a charitable trust formed by the decedent’s estate, appealed to this court from the trial court’s denial of his motion to open the judgment dismissing his probate appeal. Held that the plaintiff lacked standing to represent the trust, as he was not an attorney and he was not representing his own cause in his capacity as a trustee of the trust. Argued November 20, 2019—officially released February 18, 2020 Procedural History Appeal from the decree of the Probate Court for the district of Tolland-Mansfield appointing the defendant as guardian ad litem for the decedent’s estate, removing the plaintiff as the executor of the estate and appointing the defendant as successor administrator of the estate, brought to the Superior Court in the judicial district of Tolland, where the court, Farley, J., dismissed the appeal and rendered judgment thereon; thereafter the court denied the plaintiff’s motion to open the judgment and the plaintiff appealed to this court; subsequently, this court granted in part the defendant’s motion to dis- miss the appeal. Appeal dismissed. Edward Werner Cook, self-represented, the appel- lant (plaintiff). Kirk D. Tavtigian, Jr., with whom, on the brief, was George M. Purtill, for the appellee (defendant). Opinion PER CURIAM. The plaintiff, Edward Werner Cook, appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying his motion to open the judgment dismissing his probate appeal. The plaintiff filed this appeal as the trustee of a charitable trust, The Caprilands Foundation (founda- tion). Because the plaintiff is not an attorney and has appeared without counsel on behalf of a trust, we con- clude that the plaintiff does not have the authority to represent the trust. Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal. The following facts and procedural history are …Original document