Unlike most other jurisdictions, Delaware has not merged its courts of law and equity. The Court of Chancery is a court of equity. Thus, it is a court of limited jurisdiction. Jurisdiction exists only for matters or causes in equity and/or those specific matters for which jurisdiction is conferred by a Delaware statute. See 10 Del. C. § 341. The Court of Chancery has no jurisdiction where damages are an adequate remedy that can be retained from another court or jurisdiction in Delaware. See 10 Del. C. § 342. The Court of Chancery adjudicates a wide variety of cases involving corporate issues, alternative entities, trusts, real property, guardianships, civil rights and commercial litigation.
Because it is a court of equity, there are no punitive damages and no jury trials in the Court of Chancery.
Judges & Masters
The Court of Chancery presently has two masters. The chancellor and vice chancellors are nominated by the Governor and must be confirmed by the Senate for 12-year terms. The chancellor and vice chancellors must be learned in the law and must be Delaware citizens.
CHANCELLOR LEO E. STRINE, JR.
The Honorable Leo E. Strine, Jr. was appointed Chancellor of the Delaware Court of Chancery in 2011, where he had served as Vice Chancellor since 1998. Prior to sitting on the Court of Chancery, Vice Chancellor Strine was Counsel to Governor Thomas R. Carper since 1993. Before his position with Governor Carper, Vice Chancellor Strine served as a corporate litigator and as law clerk to Judge Walter K. Stapleton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and Chief Judge John F. Gerry of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey. Vice Chancellor Strine graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and received his Bachelor's Degree summa cum laude from the University of Delaware.
VICE CHANCELLOR JOHN W. NOBLE
The Honorable John W. Noble has been a Vice Chancellor of the Court of Chancery since November 2000. He holds a B.S. in chemical engineering, magna cum laude, from Bucknell University and a J.D., cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Following law school, he served as a federal district court law clerk and then worked in private practice.
VICE CHANCELLOR DONALD F. PARSONS
The Honorable Donald F. Parsons has been a Vice Chancellor of the Court of Chancery since October 2003. He is a 1977 graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and also received a B.S. degree in electrical engineering from Lehigh University. In over twenty-four years of private practice, he specialized in intellectual property litigation. Before joining private practice in 1979, Vice Chancellor Parsons clerked for the Honorable James L. Latchum of the United States District Court for the District of Delaware.
VICE CHANCELLOR J. TRAVIS LASTER
The Honorable J. Travis Laster became a Vice Chancellor in the Court of Chancery in October 2009. He received his A.B. summa cum laude from Princeton University and his J.D. and M.A. from the University of Virginia. Following law school, he clerked for Honorable Jane R. Roth of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and then worked as a corporate litigator.
VICE CHANCELLOR GLASSCOCK
The Honorable Sam Glasscock, III was appointed Vice Chancellor of the Court of Chancery in 2011. He previously served as a Master in the Court of Chancery. Vice Chancellor Glasscock has a B.A. in History from the University of Delaware in 1975, a J.D. with Honors from Duke University in 1983 and a Master's Degree in Marine Policy from the University of Delaware in 1989. Before coming to the Court of Chancery, he worked as a judicial clerk, as a litigator, as a Superior Court special discovery master and as a Deputy Attorney General in the Appeals Unit of the Department of Justice.
The Court of Chancery presently has two masters. The supplemental information form that must be filed with all complaints (Court of Chancery Rule 3(a)(2)) requires in certain cases that counsel submit a statement of good cause if they do not believe the action should be assigned to a master in the first instance.
MASTER KIM E. AYVAZIAN
Kim E. Ayvazian has been a Master in Chancery since November 2006. She received a B.A. in History from Yale University in 1975 and a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School in 1986. Before joining the Court of Chancery, she was a Deputy Attorney General in the Appeals Unit of the Delaware Department of Justice and a judicial law clerk.
MASTER ABIGAIL LEGROW
Abigail Legrow becamse a Master in Chancery in October 2011. She received a B.A. in Political Science from Susquehanna University and a J.D. from the Penn State Dickinson School of Law. Before joining the Court of Chancery, she was an associate in the Corporate Group of Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP and a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Jack B. Jacobs of the Delaware Supreme Court.
Judges and Masters
Court of Chancery