(From the website of the New Jersey Judiciary)

The following is the Supreme Court’s schedule for oral arguments on Feb. 4, 2014. The issues before the Supreme Court are outlined in the Appellate Division opinion in each case.

(The following statements of issues on appeal are prepared by the Office of the Clerk for the convenience of the reader. They have been neither reviewed nor approved by the Supreme Court.)

10 a.m.

*     *     *

A-49-12 Thomas Saccone v. Board of Trustees of the Police & Firemen’s Retirement System (071841)

Statement of the issue on appeal: May plaintiff designate a special needs trust established for the benefit of his disabled son as a beneficiary for the pension death benefits payable under N.J.S.A. 43:16A-12.1a?

Certification granted 3/13/13
Posted: 3/19/13
Argued: Scheduled for 2/4/14

(The Law Office of Vanarelli & Li, LLC represents Thomas Saccone, plaintiff in the case cited above. Tom is a retired fireman with a severely disabled adult child named Anthony. Anthony is totally disabled, and for many years has received Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid, public benefits based on financial need which are critical in meeting Anthony’s care needs. In August 2008, Tom asked his pension provider, the Police and Firemen’s Retirement System (PFRS), to pay the survivor’s benefits which Anthony will receive upon his father’s death to a  special needs trust established under Tom’s Last Will and Testament in order to protect Anthony’s eligibility for public benefits. The PFRS denied the request based on a State administrative regulation which prohibits a retiree from designating a beneficiary of the retiree’s pension in the event of the retiree’s death. Since 2008, we have repeatedly appealed the denial and have been repeatedly rebuffed by the PFRS and the courts. On February 4, 2014, Mr. Vanarelli will argue the case before the New Jersey Supreme Court, along with legal counsel for four disability rights organizations who filed amicus curiae, or friend of the court, briefs. A prior blog post summarizing the Saccone case can be found here.)

To learn more about Vanarelli & Li, LLC, visit: