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Enrolled Version - Final Version Senate Bill 494 History

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SB494 SUB1 enr
ENROLLED

COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR

Senate Bill No. 494

(Senators Kessler and Chafin, original sponsors)

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[Passed March 13, 2010; in effect ninety days from passage.]

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AN ACT to amend and reenact §44-3-1 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; to amend and reenact §44-3A-35 of said code; and to amend said code by adding thereto a new section, designated §51-10A-6; all relating to fiduciary matters; updating references from the commissioner of accounts to the fiduciary commissioner; requiring fiduciary commissioner to file status reports and settle accounts of certain cases with county clerks; requiring county clerks to file the status report with county commissions; and prohibiting bail bonding companies or bail bond enforcers from providing fiduciary bonds unless licenced by the Insurance Commissioner .

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §44-3-1 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted; that §44-3A-35 of said code be amended and reenacted, and that said code be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated §51-10A-6, all to read as follows :
CHAPTER 44. ADMINISTRATION OF ESTATES & TRUSTS

§44-3-1. Fiduciary commissioners.
The office previously known as commissioner of accounts is hereby abolished. The office of fiduciary commissioner is hereby created and any reference in this code to a commissioner of accounts shall, after the effective date of this section, mean fiduciary commissioner. Fiduciary commissioners shall be attorneys admitted to the practice of law in this state, or shall meet the qualifications of fiduciary supervisors as set forth in article three-a of this chapter: Provided, That persons who are serving as commissioners of accounts upon the effective date of this article shall be continued in office as fiduciary commissioners for not more than one year from the effective date of this article for the purpose of settling estates not settled on the effective date of this article.
The county commission of each county shall appoint not more than four fiduciary commissioners. In counties in which there exists a separate tribunal for police and fiscal purposes, that tribunal shall appoint the fiduciary commissioners. In either case, not more than two of the fiduciary commissioners may be from the same political party.
The fiduciary commissioner shall report to and settle accounts with the county clerk. On or before the last day of March, June, September and December, the fiduciary commissioner shall file with the county clerk a report on the status and disposition of every active case referred to the fiduciary commissioner. In the next succeeding term of the county commission, the county clerk shall provide a copy of the report to the county commission, and shall inform the county commission of any cases referred to a fiduciary commissioner in which the fiduciary commissioner has not fulfil1ed duties relating to the case in accordance with deadlines established by law. The county commission shal1 take appropriate action to ensure that all deadlines established by law will be observed, including, if necessary, the removal of fiduciary commissioners who consistently fail to meet such deadlines.
ARTICLE 3A. OPTIONAL PROCEDURE FOR PROOF AND ALLOWANCE OF CLAIMS AGAINST ESTATES OF DECEDENTS; COUNTY OPTION.

§44-3A-35. Fiduciary commissioners.
The county commission of each county shall appoint not more than four fiduciary commissioners, except that in counties in which there exists a separate tribunal for police and fiscal purposes, such tribunal shall appoint such commissioners: Provided, That the county commission or such separate tribunal shall avoid reference of estates to such commissioners, unless such reference is necessary.
The fiduciary commissioner shall report to and settle accounts with the county clerk. On or before the last day of March, June, September and December, the fiduciary commissioner shall file with the county clerk a report on the status and disposition of every active case referred to the fiduciary commissioner. In the next succeeding term of the county commission, the county clerk shall provide a copy of the report to the county commission, and shall inform the county commission of any cases referred to a fiduciary commissioner in which the fiduciary commissioner has not fulfil1ed duties relating to the case in accordance with deadlines established by law. The county commission shal1 take appropriate action to ensure that all deadlines established by law will be observed, including, if necessary, the removal of fiduciary commissioners who consistently fail to meet such deadlines.
CHAPTER 51. COURTS & THEIR OFFICERS

ARTICLE 10A. BAIL BOND ENFORCERS.
§51-10A-6. Prohibition against providing fiduciary bonds in estates; exception.

A bail bonding company or a bail bond enforcer may not provide fiduciary bonds for an estate unless the bail bonding company or bail bond enforcer is licensed with the Insurance Commissioner to act as an agent for an insurance company that provides surety or fiduciary bonds.
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