Ninth Circuit Reject en banc hearing
Less than two months after it rejected all claims made by Howard K. Stern on behalf of the late Anna Nicole Smith’s estate against E. Pierce Marshall, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied a motion by Smith’s attorneys to rehear the case en banc.
On March 19, 2010 the 9th Circuit upheld the Marshall family’s argument that the case has been fully adjudicated in the Texas Probate Court, which ruled in favor of E. Pierce Marshall and against Smith on every issue. The 9th Circuit ruling states in part: “The district court should have afforded preclusive effect to the Texas probate court’s factual findings and relevant legal conclusions. The determinations adverse to Vickie Lynn Marshall in the Texas probate court prevent her from establishing the elements of her counterclaim, such as J. Howard Marshall II’s intent to give her a substantial inter vivos gift, the tortious nature of Pierce Marshall’s conduct regarding the estate planning
documents, and the reasonableness and amount of her expectancy. We reverse the judgment of the district court and remand with instructions that judgment be entered in favor of the Estate of Pierce Marshall.”
“Today’s denial of a new hearing once again vindicated the efforts of the late E. Pierce Marshall to uphold his father’s estate plan,” said Marshall family spokesman David Margulies. The Ninth Circuit opinion supports the 2001 5 month jury trial in Texas Probate Court, which established that Anna Nicole Smith was never entitled to any assets from the Marshall family beyond the $7 million in cash and gifts she received from J. Howard Marshall, II. The jury also unequivocally rejected Smith’s claim that E. Pierce Marshall and others interfered with her receiving any additional gifts while her husband was alive or at his death.