It's been four long years for Sam Manzo, a man who belives he is the rightful inheritant of the 90-acre Smoron farm, but a recent court decision may soon give him rights to the property.
A Superior Court judge this week ruled that a decision made by a former probate judge preventing Manzo from inheriting Josephine Smoron's estate was improper and overstepped the authority of the probate office, according to a report from the Hartford Courant this week.
Under the ruling, a judge determined that Manzo was named legally as the heir to the 90-acre farm near Interstate 84 and Queen Street and should be given proper consideration in the state's probate system as the rightful owner of the property.
Let Patch save you time. Get stories like this delivered right to your inbox or smartphone every day with our free newsletter. Simple, fast sign-up here.
"There is no question that the trusts are inconsistent with Ms. Smoron's 2004 will, and even her 1996 will,'' Bright wrote in an opinion dated March 19, according to the Hartford Courant. "The fact that nobody among Attorney Nugent, Attorney LeFevre, Attorney DePaolo and Judge Meccariello appears to have given serious thought to any of these issues is difficult to understand."
Manzo had been named in both wills as the rightful heir to the property, but two trusts established one month before Smoron's death in June 2009 prevented Manzo from inheriting the property, according to the Record-Journal.
The trust had been established by Smoron's conservator John T. Nugent, with a plan to sell the property to local developer Carl Verderame Jr. Proceeds of the sale would be given to three Southington churches, according to details of the plan included in the lawsuit.
The March 19 ruling also scrutinized two other attorneys and former Southington Probate Judge Bryan Meccariello, who later stepped down from the role after criticism and controversy related to the case.
The case will now be sent back to probate for further ruling on who should inherit the property.
What are your thoughts? Should Manzo be allowed to inherit the property? Let us know.
Make sure to like Southington Patch on Facebook or follow on Twitter for breaking news, daily updates and more!