judicial seal


Judicial Branch, State of New Hampshire

Carole Alfano
Public Information Officer
603-271-2646 ext 2359
  For Immediate Release:
December 10, 2013

Circuit Court Announces New Trust Docket for Probate Division
Innovation will keep court system current with growing complex trust litigation

CONCORD - In an effort to keep the courts on pace with increasing litigation in complex trust cases in
New Hampshire, the Deputy Administrative Judge of the Circuit Court announced an innovative new "trust docket" system today.

"The Circuit Court has been acutely aware of the need to make changes in response to the growing number of complicated trust cases that we are seeing in the probate division," said Judge David King, who previously served as the Administrative Judge for the probate courts. "As a result, we are instituting a new trust docket which will allow the court system to identify early on those cases where significant assets are at stake and that are most likely to result in prolonged litigation, with extensive discovery and a lengthy trial."

King added, "I anticipate that this new docket will have a very positive impact on the flow of the more complex cases in our system." Cases assigned to the trust docket will be assigned to one judge who will be responsible for managing the case from an initial structuring conference, through the discovery process, pretrial motions and trial.

King has tapped Judge Gary Cassavechia to create and manage the trust docket starting January 1, 2014. Cassavechia presided over the well-known Tamposi trust case that lasted several years, in addition to many other complex trust and estate matters. He has been a member of the probate bench since January 1981, serving as the Strafford County Probate Judge, now the 7th Circuit. Judge Cassavechia has also regularly presided in Hillsborough County, now the 9th Circuit, and, according to King, "is widely respected by the probate bench and bar for his keen knowledge of the law and his ability to manage complex litigation with a multitude of issues and parties".

The trust docket is in direct response to the legislature passing the Trust Modernization Act (SB50) in 2011 which, by design, attempts to make New Hampshire the most trust-friendly state in the country. While encouraged by the change in state law, the Circuit Court wants to insure parties that its probate division will be able to handle the increased number of complex cases that naturally follow these changes in the trust laws.