SUBCHAPTER III. MANAGEMENT OF WARD'S ESTATE.

Article 14.

Sale, Mortgage, Exchange or Lease of Ward's Estate.

35A-1301. Special proceedings to sell, exchange, mortgage, or lease.

(a) Whenever used herein, the word "guardian" shall be construed to include general guardian, guardian of the estate, ancillary guardian, next friend, guardian ad litem, or commissioner of the court acting pursuant to this Article, but not a guardian who is guardian of the person only; and the word "mortgage" shall be construed to include deeds of trust.

(b) A guardian may apply to the clerk, by verified petition setting forth the facts, to sell, mortgage, exchange, or lease for a term of more than three years, any part of his ward's real estate, and such proceeding shall be conducted as in other cases of special proceedings. The clerk, in his discretion, may direct that the next of kin or presumptive heirs of the ward be made parties to such proceeding. The clerk may order a sale, mortgage, exchange, or lease to be made by the guardian in such way and on such terms as may be most advantageous to the interest of the ward, upon finding by satisfactory proof that:

(1) The ward's interest would be materially promoted by such sale, mortgage, exchange, or lease, or

(2) The ward's personal estate has been exhausted or is insufficient for his support and the ward is likely to become chargeable on the county, or

(3) A sale, mortgage, exchange, or lease of any part of the ward's real estate is necessary for his maintenance or for the discharge of debts unavoidably incurred for his maintenance, or

(4) Any part of the ward's real estate is required for public purposes, or

(5) There is a valid debt or demand against the estate of the ward; provided, when an order is entered under this subdivision, (i) it shall authorize the sale of only so much of the real estate as may be sufficient to discharge such debt or demand, and (ii) the proceeds of sale shall be considered as assets in the hands of the guardian for the benefit of creditors, in like manner as assets in the hands of a personal representative, and the same proceedings may be had against the guardian with respect to such assets as might be taken against an executor, administrator or collector in similar cases.

The order shall specify particularly the property thus to be disposed of, with the terms of leasing or sale or exchange or mortgage, and shall be entered at length on the records of the court. The guardian may not mortgage the property of his ward for a term of years in excess of the term fixed by the court in its order.

(c) In the case of a ward who is a minor, no sale, mortgage, exchange, or lease under this Article shall be made until approved by the superior court judge, nor shall the same be valid, nor any conveyance of the title made, unless confirmed and directed by the judge, and the proceeds of the sale, mortgage, exchange, or lease shall be exclusively applied and secured to such purposes and on such trusts as the judge shall specify.

(d) All petitions filed under this section wherein an order is sought for the sale, mortgage, exchange, or lease of the ward's real estate shall be filed in the county in which all or any part of the real estate is situated.

(e) The procedure for a sale pursuant to this section shall be as provided by Article 29A of Chapter 1 of the General Statutes.

(f) Nothing herein contained shall be construed to divest the court of the power to order private sales as heretofore ordered in proper cases.

(g) On and after June 1, 1973, no sales of property belonging to minors or incompetent persons prior to that date by next friend, guardian ad litem, or commissioner of the court regular in all other respects shall be declared invalid nor shall any claim or defense be asserted on the grounds that said sale was not made by a duly appointed guardian as provided herein or on the grounds that said minor or incompetent person was not represented by a duly appointed guardian. (1987, c. 550, s. 1; 1989, c. 473, s. 6.)

 

35A-1302. Procedure when real estate lies in county in which guardian does not reside.

In all cases where a guardian is appointed under the authority of Chapter 35A and such guardian applies to the court for an order to sell, mortgage, or exchange all or part of his ward's real estate, and such real estate is situated in a county other than the county in which the guardian is appointed and qualified, the guardian shall first apply to the clerk of the county in which he was appointed and qualified for an order showing that the sale, mortgage, or exchange of his ward's real estate is necessary or that the ward's interest would be materially promoted thereby. The clerk to whom such application is made shall hear and pass upon the same and enter his findings and order as to whether said sale, mortgage, or exchange is necessary or would materially promote the ward's interest, and said order and findings shall be certified to the clerk of the county in which the ward's land, or some part of it, is located and before whom any petition or application is filed for the sale, mortgage, or exchange of said land. Such findings and orders so certified shall be considered by the court along with all other evidence and circumstances in passing upon the petition in which an order is sought for the sale, mortgage, or exchange of said land. In the case of a ward who is a minor, before such findings and orders shall become effective the same shall be approved by the superior court judge holding the courts of the district or by the resident judge. (1987, c. 550, s. 1.)

 

35A-1303. Fund from sale has character of estate sold and subject to same trusts.

Whenever, in consequence of any sale under G.S. 35A-1301, the real or personal property of the ward is saved from demands to which in the first instance it may be liable, the final decree shall declare and set apart a portion of the personal or real estate thus saved, of value equal to the real and personal estate sold, as property exchanged for that sold; and in all sales by guardians whereby real is substituted by personal, or personal by real property, the beneficial interest in the property acquired shall be enjoyed, alienated, or devised and shall descend and be distributed, as by law the property sold might and would have been had it not been sold, until it be reconverted from the character thus impressed upon it by some act of the owner and restored to its character proper. (1987, c. 550, s. 1; 2011-284, s. 38.)

 

35A-1304: Repealed by Session Laws 1989, c. 473, s. 7.

 

35A-1305. When timber may be sold.

In case the land cannot be rented for enough to pay the taxes and other dues thereof, and there is not money sufficient for that purpose, the guardian, with the consent of the clerk, may annually dispose of or use so much of the lightwood, and box or rent so many pine trees, or sell so much of the timber on the same, as may raise enough to pay the taxes and other duties thereon, and no more. In addition, the guardian, with the consent of the clerk, may annually dispose of, use, or sell so much of the timber as is necessary to maintain good forestry practices. (1987, c. 550, s. 1.)

 

35A-1306. Abandoned incompetent spouse.

(a) A guardian of a married person found incompetent who has been abandoned, whether the guardian was appointed before or after the abandonment, may initiate a special proceeding before the clerk having jurisdiction over the ward requesting the issuance of an order authorizing the sale of the ward's separate real property without the joinder of the abandoning spouse.

(b) The ward's spouse shall be served with notice of the special proceeding in accordance with G.S. 1A-1, Rule 4.

(c) If the clerk finds:

(1) That the spouse of the ward has willfully and without just cause abandoned the ward for a period of more than one year; and

(2) That the spouse of the ward has knowledge of the guardianship, or that the guardian has made a reasonable attempt to notify the spouse of the guardianship; and

(3) That an order authorizing the sale of the separate real property of the ward is in the best interest of the ward;

the clerk may issue such an order thereby barring the abandoning spouse from all right, title and interest in any of the ward's separate real property sold pursuant to such an order. (1987, c. 550, s. 1.)

 

35A-1307. Spouse of incompetent husband or wife entitled to special proceeding for sale of real property.

Every married person whose husband or wife is adjudged incompetent and is confined in a mental hospital or other institution in this State, and who was living with the incompetent spouse at the time of commitment shall, if he or she be in needy circumstances, have the right to bring a special proceeding before the clerk to sell the real property of the incompetent spouse, or so much thereof as is deemed expedient, and have the proceeds applied for support: Provided, that said proceeding shall be approved by the judge of the superior court holding the courts of the superior court district or set of districts as defined in G.S. 7A-41.1 where the said property is situated. When the deed of the commissioner appointed by the court, conveying the lands belonging to the incompetent spouse is executed, probated, and registered, it conveys a good and indefeasible title to the purchaser. (1987, c. 550, s. 1; 1987 (Reg. Sess., 1988), c. 1037, s. 83; 1989, c. 473, s. 8.)

 

35A-1308 through 35A-1309: Reserved for future codification purposes.