Article 3.

Willful and Unlawful Killing of Decedent.

31A-3. Definitions.

As used in this Article, unless the context otherwise requires, the term -

(1) "Decedent" means the person whose life is taken by the slayer as defined in subdivision (3) of this section.

(2) "Property" means any real or personal property and any right or interest therein.

(3) "Slayer" means any of the following:

a. A person who, by a court of competent jurisdiction, is convicted as a principal or accessory before the fact of the willful and unlawful killing of another person.

b. A person who has entered a plea of guilty in open court as a principal or accessory before the fact of the willful and unlawful killing of another person.

c. A person who, upon indictment or information as a principal or accessory before the fact of the willful and unlawful killing of another person, has tendered a plea of nolo contendere which was accepted by the court and judgment entered thereon.

d. A person who is found by a preponderance of the evidence in a civil action brought within two years after the death of the decedent to have willfully and unlawfully killed the decedent or procured the killing of the decedent. If a criminal proceeding is brought against the person to establish the person's guilt as a principal or accessory before the fact of the willful and unlawful killing of the decedent within two years after the death of the decedent, the civil action may be brought within 90 days after a final determination is made by a court of competent jurisdiction in that criminal proceeding or within the original two years after the death of the decedent, whichever is later. The burden of proof in the civil action is on the party seeking to establish that the killing was willful and unlawful for the purposes of this Article.

e. A juvenile who is adjudicated delinquent by reason of committing an act that, if committed by an adult, would make the adult a principal or accessory before the fact of the willful and unlawful killing of another person.

The term "slayer" does not include a person who is found not guilty by reason of insanity of being a principal or accessory before the fact of the willful and unlawful killing of another person. (1961, c. 210, s. 1; 2006-107, s. 1.)