43 CFR § 30.251 - What happens if BIA identifies additional property of a decedent after the probate decision is issued?

§ 30.251 What happens if BIA identifies additional property of a decedent after the probate decision is issued?

If, after issuance of a decision, BIA identifies additional trust or restricted property of a decedent that it had not already identified at the time of the decision, then BIA will submit a petition to OHA for an order directing distribution of the additional property.

(a) OHA will accept the petition at any time after issuance of the decision.

(b) The judge will review the petition to ensure that the petition identifies the additional property and the source of that property (e.g., inheritance or approval of a deed) and includes the following:

(1) A certified inventory describing the additional trust or restricted land, if applicable, or, if the additional property is trust personalty, documents verifying the balance and source of the additional trust personalty, and a statement that the inventory lists only the property to be added;

(2) A copy of the decision, or modification or distribution order and corresponding inventory issued in the probate case from which the property was inherited by the decedent, if applicable;

(3) A statement identifying each newly added share of any allotment that increases the decedent's total share of the ownership interest of the allotment to 5 percent or more;

(4) A copy of BIA's notification to the Tribes with jurisdiction over the interests of the list of the additional interests that represent less than 5 percent of the entire undivided ownership of each parcel (after being added to the decedent's estate) under 25 CFR 15.401(b); and

(5) A certification that all interested parties have been associated to the case and their names and addresses are current.

(c) The judge may, at the judge's discretion, either:

(1) Deny the request for good cause; or

(2) Address the request with or without a hearing.

(d) If the judge does not deny the petition, the judge will issue an order that directs distribution of the additional property. The order may direct that the additional property be distributed in the same manner as property already addressed in the decision, or the order may direct that the additional property be distributed in a different manner than property already addressed in the decision.

(e) The judge must furnish copies of the distribution order to the agency and to all interested parties who share in the estate. The distribution order will notify all heirs or devisees, including any surviving spouse, of the right to seek reconsideration to:

(1) Object to the findings and conclusions of the distribution order;

(2) Renounce their interest(s) in any of the additional property;

(3) Include the additional property in an existing or new consolidation agreement;

(4) Allege an error in BIA's inventory of additional property under § 30.128; or

(5) File a request to purchase the additional property at probate.

(f) The distribution order will also instruct the heirs or devisees that they must notify OHA in writing of their request for reconsideration of the distribution order within 30 days of the mailing of the distribution order, and that their right to seek reconsideration will be waived if they fail to notify OHA in writing by the deadline. For purposes of filing the request for reconsideration, the written submission will be considered to be filed with OHA on the date it is postmarked or faxed to OHA.

(g) If OHA does not receive a timely request for reconsideration, the distribution order will become final on the 45th day after the mailing date. An untimely filed request for reconsideration will not be considered by OHA and will not disturb the finality of the distribution order.

[86 FR 72089, Dec. 20, 2021]