West Virginia Code Chapter 44. Administration of Estates and Trusts § 44-4-14a. Final settlement by fiduciaries for decedent's estates; penalty

(a) The provisions of this chapter notwithstanding, every fiduciary for the estate of a resident decedent shall, within five years of appointment as fiduciary make a full and final settlement, report and accounting for the decedent's estate in the manner provided for in this code for accountings by fiduciaries, and further shall, at the time of making the final settlement, notify in writing the clerk of the county commission of the county where the fiduciary was appointed that the final settlement has been made.

(b) If the fiduciary is unable to make a full and final settlement, report and accounting of the decedent's estate within the above time period because there have been unusual or extraordinary circumstances, demands or conditions imposed upon the fiduciary which have caused a delay in the final settlement, he or she may request an extension of time in which to make the settlement. Such request must be in writing to the county commission and include a date by which the fiduciary reasonably expects to make the full and final settlement.

(c) Any fiduciary failing to comply with this section, in whole or in part, is personally liable to the beneficiaries or creditors of the decedent's estate for any loss or waste caused by the failure to make the final settlement. The fiduciary shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than two hundred fifty dollars nor more than one thousand dollars for failure to comply with this section, except for good and sufficient cause shown.

(d) In the event the fiduciary has not made the final settlement of the estate within five years of appointment, the fiduciary shall notify the county commission that the final settlement has not been made. If the fiduciary does not establish good cause for not making the final settlement within the five-year period, as determined by the county commission, the fiduciary is discharged of his or her duties as fiduciary. The sheriff of the county shall then take charge of the estate and proceed to make a final settlement of the estate in an expeditious manner.

(e) A fiduciary who fails to notify the county commission in accordance with subsection (d) of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than fifty dollars nor more than five hundred dollars.


FindLaw Codes are provided courtesy of Thomson Reuters Westlaw, the industry-leading online legal research system. For more detailed codes research information, including annotations and citations, please visit Westlaw.

FindLaw Codes may not reflect the most recent version of the law in your jurisdiction. Please verify the status of the code you are researching with the state legislature or via Westlaw before relying on it for your legal needs.