A new Florida appeals case, Wilson v. Wilson (Fla. Ct. App. May 21, 2014), reads like a parody of what is wrong with the court:
The twenty-three year old son, single and without children, died in a tragic automobile accident. He left no will and no written or verbal instructions for disposition of his body. His parents are co-personal representatives of their son’s estate, and the sole beneficiaries.The mom demanded sole custody of the ashes, the dad asked to just split them, and so the judge decided to "appoint a curator or other suitable person" to carry out the disposition, according to the best interest of the ashes.
After their son’s death, the parents agreed to have his body cremated. They were unable, however, to agree on the final disposition of his ashes. The mother wanted to bury the son’s ashes in West Palm Beach, Florida. The father wanted to bury the son’s ashes in a family burial plot in Blue Ridge, Georgia.
You probably think that I am making this up, but that is pretty much what the decision said. Read it yourself.
A law professor quotes another court:
It is a sorrowful matter to have relatives disputing in court over the remains of the deceased. In this case in particular, there is no solution that will bring peace to all parties. We express our sympathies to both sides in their loss, which must be magnified by these proceedings.The suggestion here is that the relatives are being unreasonable by having a dispute, and the judge is trying his best to resolve. But it only takes one to create a dispute, and in this case it is the mom. The courts dragged this out for a year or two when it should only take 5 minutes. No amount of hearings or lawyering will ever reach a more just distribution or disposition of the ashes.