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SECTION 8-1.1
Disposition of property for charitable purposes
Estates, Powers & Trusts (EPT) CHAPTER 17-B, ARTICLE 8, PART 1
§ 8-1.1 Disposition of property for charitable purposes

(a) No disposition of property for religious, charitable, educational
or benevolent purposes, otherwise valid under the laws of this state, is
invalid by reason of the indefiniteness or uncertainty of the persons
designated as beneficiaries. If a trustee is named in the disposing
instrument, legal title to the property transferred for such a purpose
vests in such trustee; if no person is named as trustee, title vests in
the court having jurisdiction over the trust.

(b) No disposition of property made in a will, executed and attested
as prescribed by law, is invalid by reason of the incorporation by
reference in the will of any existing written resolution, declaration or
deed of trust, identified in such will and made or adopted by any
corporation authorized by law to execute or accept trusts, to assist,
encourage and promote the well-being and well-doing of mankind in
general or the inhabitants of any community in particular; provided that
a copy of such resolution, declaration or deed of trust, certified,
under its corporate seal, by the secretary or assistant secretary or the
cashier or assistant cashier of such corporation, is filed for record in
the office of the secretary of state and in the office of the clerk or
register of the county of the corporation's principal place of business,
in which the conveyances of real property are required by law to be
filed for record, the secretary of state and the officer in charge of
such record office being hereby authorized and directed to receive and
record such resolution, declaration or deed of trust upon payment of the
fees provided by law. Any such testamentary disposition to a corporation
for the religious, charitable, educational or benevolent purposes set
forth in such resolution, declaration or deed of trust is effective
although the terms, conditions and purposes of such disposition are
established only through such reference in the will.

(c) (1) The supreme court and, where the disposition is made by will,
the surrogate's court in which such will is probated have jurisdiction
over dispositions referred to and authorized by paragraphs (a) and (b),
and whenever it appears to such court that circumstances have so changed
since the execution of an instrument making a disposition for religious,
charitable, educational or benevolent purposes as to render
impracticable or impossible a literal compliance with the terms of such
disposition, the court may, on application of the trustee or of the
person having custody of the property subject to the disposition and on
such notice as the court may direct, make an order or decree directing
that such disposition be administered and applied in such manner as in
the judgment of the court will most effectively accomplish its general
purposes, free from any specific restriction, limitation or direction
contained therein; provided, however, that any such order or decree is
effective only with the consent of the creator of the disposition if he
is living.

(2) (i) The attorney general or any trustee or beneficiary of a
testamentary or lifetime trust wholly benefitting one or more charitable
beneficiaries may petition a court of competent jurisdiction, on notice
to the attorney general and all parties interested in the trust, seeking
a termination of such trust when the trust is comprised of assets, the
market value of which is one hundred thousand dollars or less and the
expense of administering the trust is uneconomic when considered
relative to income. When the court finds upon such application that
continuation of the trust is economically impracticable or is not in the
best interests of the beneficiaries, the court shall make an order or
decree terminating the trust and directing the distribution of the trust
assets to accomplish its charitable purposes, provided, however, that if
the trust is one for the benefit of a particular charitable beneficiary
or beneficiaries named therein, the court shall direct the distribution
of the trust assets to such named charitable beneficiary or
beneficiaries, and provided further that no such proceeding may be
instituted without the consent of the creator of the disposition if he
is living.

(ii) For purposes of this paragraph, the term "charitable beneficiary"
shall mean the beneficiary of a disposition for a religious, charitable,
educational or benevolent purpose.

(d) The power of the supreme court or the surrogate's court, as
provided in paragraph (c), to prevent the failure of, and to give effect
to dispositions for religious, charitable, educational or benevolent
purposes is not defeated by the circumstance that the beneficiary of any
such disposition does not exist or, if in existence, lacks capacity to
take such disposition at the time it would otherwise become effective,
whether or not the disposition creates an express trust to effectuate
its purposes.

(e) Any accumulation of income from property subject to a disposition
in trust for a religious, charitable, educational or benevolent purpose,
or otherwise acquired by such trust, shall in all respects, including
its reasonableness, amount and duration, be within the jurisdiction of
the supreme court or the surrogate's court, as the case may be. In
exercising such jurisdiction, (1) any accumulation of income which might
otherwise be applied for the purposes of the trust may be prohibited or
limited, despite a valid direction therefor in the trust instrument or
authority therefor under 8-1.7 and (2) such an accumulation may be
authorized by order of the court despite the absence of a direction
therefor in the trust instrument. This paragraph shall not restrict in
any manner the ability to release or modify restrictions relating to
institutional funds under section 555 of the not-for-profit corporation
law.

(f) The attorney general shall represent the beneficiaries of such
dispositions for religious, charitable, educational or benevolent
purposes and it shall be his duty to enforce the rights of such
beneficiaries by appropriate proceedings in the courts.

(g) The supreme court or the surrogate's court, as the case may be,
may authorize the trustee or any person holding title thereto to sell,
mortgage or lease any real property which is the subject of a
disposition for a religious, charitable, educational or benevolent
purpose, whenever it appears to the satisfaction of the court that such
real property, or any part thereof, has become or is likely to become
unproductive, has depreciated or is likely to depreciate in value, that
it is advisable to raise money to improve or erect buildings upon
property so held or that it is expedient for any other reason that such
real property be sold, mortgaged or leased. This paragraph shall not
restrict in any manner the powers or rights any trustee may have by law
or by the terms of any disposition of such real property. The
provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to any corporation which is
subject to sections 509 through 511 of the not-for-profit corporation
law.

(h) The supreme court or the surrogate's court shall not make an order
or decree under paragraph (g) unless it appears that eight days written
notice, stating the time and place of the application for such order or
decree, has been served upon the attorney general, who shall represent
the state, the beneficiaries of any trust and the persons who might
benefit from the religious, charitable, educational or benevolent
purpose for which the real property, which is the subject of the
application, is held. A like eight days notice of such application shall
be given to any adult within the state who has a vested or contingent
future estate in such real property and to any minor, incompetent,
conservatee or absentee who is interested in such property, in such
manner as the court may direct. Before making a final order or decree,
the court shall appoint a guardian ad litem for any minor who is not
represented by a guardian or parent, for any incompetent who is not
represented by a committee, and for any absentee.

(i) A sale, mortgage or lease made, as required by law, in accordance
with an order or decree of a court under this section is effective
against the state as representative of the beneficiaries of such trust
and persons who might benefit from the purposes for which such real
property is held, and against persons with a vested or contingent future
interest in such property and minors, incompetents, conservatees,
absentees and persons not in being who have an interest in such
property, as well as all other persons who, having been made parties to
such proceeding, consent to such order or decree. The purchaser,
mortgagee or lessee, or any person claiming under them, shall not be
responsible for the disposition of the proceeds of any such sale,
mortgage or lease.

(j) Whenever a voluntary association or committee has received, by
public subscription, a fund for a charitable or benevolent purpose from
more than one thousand contributors, a portion of which remains
unexpended after the expiration of five years from the time of its
receipt, and it appears that a literal compliance with the terms of the
subscription is impracticable, the supreme court may make an order
directing that such unexpended balance be transferred for administration
and application to such domestic corporation as in the judgment of the
court will most effectively accomplish the general purpose for which
such fund was collected, free from any restriction, limitation or
direction upon which the subscription was made; and on the transfer of
such fund to the corporation designated in the order, such voluntary
association, its officers and trustees, or such committee and its
officers shall be fully exonerated and discharged from all liability to
account for such fund. This paragraph shall not restrict in any manner
the ability to release or modify restrictions relating to institutional
funds under section 555 of the not-for-profit corporation law.

(k) An order shall be made under paragraph (j) on the application of
the association or the treasurer of the committee, having custody of the
unexpended balance, on twenty days personal notice to the attorney
general and notice by publication once a week for four consecutive weeks
in a newspaper of general circulation published in the county in which
the treasurer of such association or committee resides. If such
treasurer resides outside of the state, such notice shall be published
in the county in which at least ten per cent of the contributors of such
fund resided at the time of its receipt or in such other manner as the
court may direct to the contributors as a class, to ten specified
members of such class and to the trustees of such association or the
surviving members of such committee.

(l) Where public subscriptions for charitable or benevolent purposes
were made or begun prior to the year nineteen hundred twenty and the
total number of subscribers exceeded five hundred but were less than one
thousand, any unexpended balance of a fund obtained for such purpose
which, at the time this section takes effect, is in the custody of a
surviving member of a committee may be transferred for administration,
on the application of such surviving member, in accordance with the
procedure and with the effect set forth in paragraphs (j) and (k).