MENDHAM TOWNSHIP, NJ – Michael Thompson, an attorney from Mendham Township, has announced his candidacy for Morris County Surrogate. Thompson has practiced as a trusts and estates attorney for more than 20 years, most recently with the firm of Cestone & Thompson, P.C. in East Hanover and New York City.

“I am pleased and honored to announce my candidacy for Surrogate of Morris County," Thompson wrote in a statement.. "During my career as a trusts and estates attorney, I have gained an understanding of the complexities of the role of the County Surrogate but also the human element involved in cases that come before the Surrogate’s Office.

“The primary role for the Surrogate should be to as an advocate for the people of the county. But there are many issues for which the Surrogate is responsible: managing the budget at a time where the county is looking at major capital outlays at the County Administration Complex, ensuring that the staff is well trained and sensitive to the needs of citizens utilizing the Office of the Surrogate, and providing educational resources to county residents on topics in the Surrogate’s purview.

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“The role of the County Surrogate should be one of the least political jobs in government. County residents utilize the services of the Surrogate’s Court when they are facing a family crisis: when a loved one dies, when a disabled child turns 18, or when a parent loses capacity. I have drafted thousands of wills and trusts. I have administered hundreds of estates. I have been involved in will contests and litigated guardianships. In all of these matters I am proud to say that I was a zealous advocate for my clients. But I am also proud of my reputation as an ethical adversary. In September of 2016, I was appointed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New Jersey to a four-year term serving on the Office of Attorney Ethics, District VB Ethics Committee.

“I look forward to a positive campaign. I intend to visit each of Morris County’s 39 towns, introducing myself and explaining more about what the Surrogate does. My biggest liability in not being a politician is that I’m fairly unknown. I look forward to meeting with Morris County residents to explain why my particular set of skills makes me the best candidate to be the next Morris County Surrogate."

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