7A-307. Costs in administration of estates.

(a) In the administration of the estates of decedents, minors, incompetents, of missing persons, in the administration of trusts under wills and under powers of attorney, in trust proceedings under G.S. 36C-2-203, in estate proceedings under G.S. 28A-2-4, in power of attorney proceedings under G.S. 32C-1-116(a), and in collections of personal property by affidavit, the following costs shall be assessed:

(1) For the use of the courtroom and related judicial facilities, the sum of ten dollars ($10.00), to be remitted to the county. Funds derived from the facilities fees shall be used in the same manner, for the same purposes, and subject to the same restrictions, as facilities fees assessed in criminal actions.

(1a) For the upgrade, maintenance, and operation of the judicial and county courthouse telecommunications and data connectivity, the sum of four dollars ($4.00), to be credited to the Court Information Technology Fund.

(2) For support of the General Court of Justice, the sum of one hundred six dollars ($106.00), plus an additional forty cents (40) per one hundred dollars ($100.00), or major fraction thereof, of the gross estate, not to exceed six thousand dollars ($6,000). Gross estate shall include the fair market value of all personal property when received, and all proceeds from the sale of realty coming into the hands of the fiduciary, but shall not include the value of realty. In collections of personal property by affidavit, the fee based on the gross estate shall be computed from the information in the final affidavit of collection made pursuant to G.S. 28A-25-3 and shall be paid when that affidavit is filed. In all other cases, this fee shall be computed from the information reported in the inventory. If additional gross estate, including income, comes into the hands of the fiduciary after the filing of the inventory, the fee for such additional value shall be computed from the information reported in the account or report disclosing such additional value. For each filing the minimum fee shall be fifteen dollars ($15.00). Sums collected under this subdivision shall be remitted to the State Treasurer.

(2a) Notwithstanding subdivision (2) of this subsection, the fee of forty cents (40) per one hundred dollars ($100.00), or major fraction, of the gross estate, not to exceed six thousand dollars ($6,000), shall not be assessed on personal property received by a trust under a will when the estate of the decedent was administered under Chapters 28 or 28A of the General Statutes. Instead, a fee of twenty dollars ($20.00) shall be assessed on the filing of each annual and final account. However, the fee shall be assessed only on newly contributed or acquired assets, all interest or other income that accrues or is earned on or with respect to any existing or newly contributed or acquired assets, and realized gains on the sale of any and all trust assets. Newly contributed or acquired assets do not include assets acquired by the sale, transfer, exchange, or otherwise of the amount of trust property on which fees were previously assessed.

(2b) Notwithstanding subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection, no costs shall be assessed when the estate is administered or settled pursuant to G.S. 28A-25-6.

(2c) Notwithstanding subdivision (2) of this subsection, the fee of forty cents (40) per one hundred dollars ($100.00), or major fraction, of the gross estate shall not be assessed on the gross estate of a trust that is the subject of a proceeding under G.S. 36C-2-203 if there is no requirement in the trust that accountings be filed with the clerk.

(2d) Notwithstanding subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection, the only cost assessed in connection with the qualification of a limited personal representative under G.S. 28A-29-1 shall be a fee of twenty dollars ($20.00) to be assessed upon the filing of the petition.

(3) For probate of a will without qualification of a personal representative, the clerk shall assess a facilities fee as provided in subdivision (1) of this subsection and shall assess for support of the General Court of Justice, the sum of twenty dollars ($20.00).

(4) For the support of the General Court of Justice, the sum of twenty dollars ($20.00) shall accompany any filing of a notice of hearing on a motion not listed in G.S. 7A-308 that is filed with the clerk. No costs shall be assessed to a notice of hearing on a motion containing as a sole claim for relief the taxing of costs, including attorneys' fees, or to a motion filed pursuant to G.S. 1C-1602 or G.S. 1C-1603. No more than one fee shall be assessed for any motion for which a notice of hearing is filed, regardless of whether the hearing is continued, rescheduled, or otherwise delayed.

(5) For the filing of a caveat to a will, the clerk shall assess for support of the General Court of Justice, the sum of two hundred dollars ($200.00).

(6) Notwithstanding subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection, the only cost assessed in connection with the reopening of an estate administration under G.S. 28A-23-5 shall be forty cents (40) per one hundred dollars ($100.00), or major fraction, of any additional gross estate, including income, coming into the hands of the fiduciary after the estate is reopened; provided that the total cost assessed when added to the total cost assessed in all prior administrations of the estate shall not exceed six thousand dollars ($6,000).

(b) In collections of personal property by affidavit, the facilities fee and thirty dollars ($30.00) of the General Court of Justice fee shall be paid at the time of filing the qualifying affidavit pursuant to G.S. 28A-25-1. If the sole asset of the estate is a cause of action, these fees shall be paid at the time of the qualification of the fiduciary.

(b1) The clerk shall assess the following miscellaneous fees:

(1)....... Filing and indexing a will with no probate

- first page....................................................................................................... $ 1.00

- each additional page or fraction thereof.............................................................. 25

(2)....... Issuing letters to fiduciaries, per letter over five letters issued.......................... 1.00

(3)....... Inventory of safe deposits of a decedent, per box, per day.............................. 15.00

(4)....... Taking a deposition.......................................................................................... 10.00

(5)....... Docketing and indexing a will probated in another county in the State

........... - first page........................................................................................................... 6.00

........... - each additional page or fraction thereof.............................................................. 25

(6)....... Hearing petition for year's allowance to surviving spouse or child, in cases not assigned to a magistrate, and allotting the same...................................................................... 8.00

(c) The following additional expenses, when incurred, are also assessable or recoverable, as the case may be:

(1) Witness fees, as provided by law.

(2) Counsel fees, as provided by law.

(3) Costs on appeal, of the original transcript of testimony, if any, insofar as essential to the appeal.

(4) Fees for personal service of civil process, and other sheriff's fees, as provided by law.

(5) Fees of guardians ad litem, referees, receivers, commissioners, surveyors, arbitrators, appraisers, and other similar court appointees, as provided by law.

(d) Costs assessed before the clerk shall be added to costs assessable on appeal to the judge or upon transfer to the civil issue docket.

(e) Nothing in this section shall affect the liability of the respective parties for costs, as provided by law. (1965, c. 310, s. 1; 1967, c. 691, s. 31; 1969, c. 1190, s. 30; 1971, c. 1181, s. 1; 1973, c. 1335, s. 1; 1981, c. 691, s. 4; 1983, c. 713, ss. 10-17; 1985, c. 481, ss. 1-5; 1985 (Reg. Sess., 1986), c. 855; 1987, c. 837; 1989, c. 719; 1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 811, ss. 4, 5; 1997-310, s. 4; 1998-212, s. 29A.12(d); 2000-109, s. 4(d); 2001-413, s. 1.2; 2001-424, s. 22.14(d); 2002-135, ss. 2, 3; 2005-276, s. 43.1(d); 2007-323, ss. 30.8(d), 30.10(b); 2008-107, s. 29.8(d); 2008-193, s. 2; 2009-444, s. 3; 2009-451, s. 15.20(h), (i); 2009-570, s. 29; 2011-145, s. 31.23(d); 2011-344, s. 2; 2011-391, s. 62; 2012-142, s. 16.5(e); 2013-225, s. 4(c); 2013-360, s. 18B.17(c); 2015-241, s. 18A.23(e); 2017-158, s. 13; 2017-197, s. 5.4A(c); 2018-40, s. 3.)