JOSEPH MICHAEL ANGELICHIO, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS ADMINISTRATOR OF THE ESTATE OF TINA MARIE PLOTTS
BETSY JO MYERS, JOANNE E. MYERS, AND MICHAEL J. D'ANIELLO, ESQUIRE, ADMINISTRATOR OF THE ESTATE OF TYRONE DIEFENDERFER, DECEASED; APPEAL OF: MICHAEL J. D'ANIELLO, ESQUIRE, ADMINISTRATOR OF THE ESTATE OF TYRONE DIEFENDERFER, DECEASED
Argued December 9, 2014
Appeal from the Order Entered February 25, 2014, In the Court of Common Pleas of Berks County, Civil Division, at No. 05-15422. Before SPRECHER, J.
Teresa F. Sachs, Philadelphia, for appellant.
John O'Rourke, Jr., Norristown, for Myers, appellees.
James I. Devine, Norristown, for Joseph M. Angelichio, appellee.
BEFORE: FORD ELLIOTT, P.J.E., SHOGAN, J., and STABILE, J. OPINION BY SHOGAN, J.
Appellant, Michael J. D'Aniello, Esquire, Administrator of the Estate of Tyrone Diefenderfer (" Diefenderfer" ), appeals from the February 25, 2014 discovery sanction order entering default judgment against Appellant. Because the February 25, 2014 order is not appealable, we quash.
Appellees Betsy Jo Myers and Joanne E. Myers (" Myers Appellees" ), owned the property at 132 Hunters Forge Road. Betsy Jo Myers lived at the property, but often stayed at her boyfriend's house. Tina Marie Plotts (" Plotts" ), who had previously separated from her husband, Joseph Michael Angelichio (" Angelichio" ), had been staying at the property, but there was no written lease covering that arrangement. Plotts' bedroom was on the second floor of the property. Diefenderfer also used this property as a mailing address, and had been staying there " off and on" for two years. He did not have a bedroom, but when at the property would sleep on the couch on the first floor.
On February 27, 2004, there was a fire at the property. Plotts and Diefenderfer were the only individuals at the property at the time of the fire. Diefenderfer was able to escape the blaze, but Plotts died in the fire.
Angelichio, individually and as administrator of Plotts' Estate, filed a complaint against the Myers Appellees and Diefenderfer. Angelichio sought depositions of all defendants.
Diefenderfer consistently refused to appear for a deposition. The trial court summarized the numerous attempts and court orders directing Diefenderfer to appear for the deposition from June 2007 through January 2011. Trial Court Opinion,
6/30/14, at 2-5. Diefenderfer was not deposed prior to his death in January 2012.
After Diefenderfer's death, Angelichio filed a motion for sanctions pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. 4019, seeking an entry of judgment against Diefenderfer's estate as a result of Diefenderfer's failure to appear for a videotaped deposition. On October 9, 2013, the court entered judgment against the estate as a sanction for Diefenderfer's failure to appear for the deposition.
Appellant filed a motion to open or strike the judgment, as well as an express determination of finality, pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. 341(c), and a motion for appellate certification pursuant to 42 Pa.C.S. § 702(b). By order dated November 12, 2013, the trial court vacated the October 9, 2013 judgment and scheduled argument for November 19, 2013.
On November 25, 2013, the trial court denied Appellant's request for an express determination of finality of the October 9, 2013 order. On December 20, 2013, the trial court similarly denied Appellant's ...