Ruling a "Dead Man's Rule" did not apply in the case, Judge D. Michael Stine denied a claim for repayment of a downpayment to purchase mine equipment after a non-jury trial held in Schuylkill County court.

Wilbur W. White, of 44 South Maple Avenue, Pottsville, doing business as Wilbur White Coal Company, brought suit against Karen M. Wrono, 752 Evergreen Circle, Telford, Montgomery County, and the estate of the late Samuel Wrona, her husband.

The suit was based on a claim to purchase a skid loader. White claimed he entered into a verbal agreement with Samuel Wrona for the purchase of the loader and had paid Wrona $5,000 as a downpayment but before the transaction was completed Wrona died in August 2005. White was seeking from Mrs. Wrona the return of the downpayment or allowed to purchase the loader. The wife claimed she was unaware of any transaction between her husband and she sold the loader to another party.

White attempted to use the Dead Man's Rule to regain his money. Stine ruled White failed to provide proof of the oral agreement and denied his claim.