“This ‘suit has, in course of time, become so complicated, that . . . no two . . . lawyers can talk about it for five minutes, without coming to a total disagreement as to all the premises. Innumerable children have been born into the cause: innumerable young people have married into it;’ and, sadly, the original parties ‘have died out of it.’ A ‘long procession of [judges] has come in and gone out’ during that time, and still the suit ‘drags its weary length before the Court.’
“Those words were not written about this case, but they could have been.”
~ Chief Justice John G. Roberts, quoting Charles Dickens’ “Bleak House” to describe the long-running legal battle between the estate of oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall and the estate of pinup and reality star Anna Nicole Smith in Stern v. Marshall. (More on yesterday’s ruling here on Lawyers USA online).