In re Estate of Lindley

(2007) JELR 80304 (CA)    
Court of Appeal  ·  185 N.C. App. 159 ·  7 Aug 2007 ·  United States
Other Citations
(N.C. Ct. App. 2007)
Core Terms Beta
n.c. gen. stat
adams kleemeier
trial court
counsel fees
clerk of court
personal representative
special proceeding
real property
findings of fact
conclusions of law
public administrator
superior court
doctrine of laches
john van lindley
law firm
additional findings
attorney fees
attorneys fees
payments of counsel fees
retention of legal counsel
walter l. hannah
award of counsel fees
much time
sound discretion of the clerk of court
trial court's ruling
virginia l. livingston
adams kleemeier hagan hannah
clerk of superior court of guilford county
costs of administration of the estate
court finds
executors of his estate
expenses of administration of the estate
fact support
nexsen pruet adams kleemeier
notice requirements of n.c. gen. stat
personal property
provisions of g.s.
real property of a decedent
representatives of the firm
requested amount
state ex rel
such conduct
sufficient evidence
virginia l. simpson

STEELMAN J (presiding and reading the lead judgment)

When an heir to an estate initially disputes counsel fees awarded by the clerk of court, but subsequently stops the dispute, induces the law firm to continue its representation, and approximately nine years later challenges the orders awarding counsel fees, the doctrine of laches is properly applied to deny the heir's challenge. When neither the clerk nor the trial court's ruling was adverse to an appellant, this Court does not reach the appellant's assignment of error. N.C. Gen. Stat. 28A-15-1(c) provides that executors may institute a special proceeding to sell the real property of a decedent to satisfy claims for payments of counsel fees and costs of judgment,administration, and the debts of creditors are subordinate to the costs of administration of the estate. The notice requirements of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 28A-17-4 are not applicable to heirs having only a contingent remainder interest in property. Where the trial court held that …

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