This Act was repealed on 2021-07-01 by Curatelle Act, 2021.
- Commenced on 1 July 1892
- [This is the version of this document at 1 December 2014.]
- [Repealed by Curatelle Act, 2021 (Act 23 of 2021) on 1 July 2021]
1. Short titleThis Act may be cited as the Curatelle Act.
Curator of Vacant Estates
2. Office of Curator created. Office to be called the curatelle officeThere shall be an officer called the Curator of Vacant Estates, who shall be appointed by the President*.The office of such Curator shall be called the Curatelle Office.
3. Curator to be under the direction of the PresidentThe Curator shall be under the direction of the President.
4. Salary and pension of Curator
5. Commission on vacant estates
6. Curator to take oath of officeThe Curator shall, as soon as possible after being appointed, take the oath of office.
7. Curator to keep books and accounts and make returns
8. President may appoint person to act if Curator preventedIt shall be lawful for the President to appoint any appoint person person to act for the Curator, whenever the latter is unable to act himself; and such person shall, as soon as possible after being appointed, take the oath of office.
9. Annual list of estates to be furnished by CuratorThe Curator shall annually lay before the President a list of all the estates under his charge and administration with the balance due to or by each estate.The statement shall contain, as clearly as possible, the names, profession, countries, places of birth and last places of residence of the deceased or absent parties, to whom they respectively apply so far as the same can be ascertained.
10. Duties of Curator
Vacant estates and estates of absentees
11. Definition of vacant estates
12. Definition of absenteesWhenever there is reason to believe that any person absent from and not legally represented in Seychelles is entitled to property therein, such person shall, for the purposes of this Act, be considered an absentee.
13. Monthly returns of vesting orders to be furnished by Registrar
14. Curator to apply for vesting order
15. Vesting order may be made at instance of third partyFailing any such application by the Curator any person may apply, after the expiration of reasonable notice in writing calling upon the Curator to make such application, for an order vesting in the Curator any vacant estate or the right of any absentee. Such order may be made by a Judge upon a summons calling upon the Curator to show cause why it should not be made, and upon satisfactory proof being adduced that such order is necessary for the protection of the rights of the applicant.
16. Advertisements of unclaimed immovable property
17. Property affected by vesting orderSubject to the provisions of this Act a vesting order shall, in the case of vacant succession, vest in the Curator all property and rights in Seychelles accruing to, or depending from, such succession, to the same extent as if he were the sole heir and representative of such succession.And in the case of unclaimed property all rights of ownership in such property.And in the case of absentees all rights and property of such absentees in Seychelles.
18. Duration and force of vesting orderEvery vesting order shall remain in force until an order is made divesting the Curator.
Administration of vacant estate
19. Curator to take possession of property and ascertain owners
20. Inventory of movableThe Curator shall, immediately on any vesting order being made, proceed to make an inventory of the movable property thereby vested in him.Such inventory shall be made in the presence of two witnesses, and shall be signed by the Curator and the witnesses, and shall have validity and authenticity as if made by a notary.
21. Moneys to be paid to Treasury
22. Curator to administer propertySubject to the provisions of this Act the Curator shall administer all vacant successions and manage all property and exercise all rights vested in him, as he may reasonably deem best for the interests of the persons beneficially entitled thereto.It shall be lawful for any court, upon the application of the Curator to stay any legal proceedings commenced in such court, or any sale of immovable property, or the execution of any will, or generally any proceeding, judicial or extra judicial, by which the rights of persons represented by the Curator may be affected, for such time and upon such terms as to the court may seem just.
23. Sale of movable propertyMovable property may be sold by the Curator in the following cases:
24. Sale of immovable property by order of JudgeImmovable property may be sold by the Curator upon an order of a Judge, in the following cases:
25. Procedure on sale of immovable propertyImmovable property sold by order of a Judge shall be sold subject to the following formalities and conditions:
26. Sale by order of JudgeNotwithstanding anything contained in section 25, when the value of the immovable property as fixed by an appraiser appointed by the Judge does not exceed three thousand rupees, it shall be lawful for the Judge to order that the sale of such property shall be effected in such manner, at such price, and subject to such conditions as the Judge shall direct.
28. Curator to watch over and administer estates under his careThe Curator shall see to the due execution of the conditions of the leases, and shall take care that all the property, movable or immovable, in his custody be kept in good order; it shall be his duty to compel payment from all persons indebted to the estate.
29. Curator to examine claims against estatesAs soon as possible after entering into possession the Curator shall, in two consecutive numbers of the Gazette and by advertisement posted up at the Court House, the Customs House and the Central Police Station, call in all claims outstanding against the estate. He shall carefully examine the claims put forward, any of which he may require the claimants to verify by affidavit or he may require the claimants to bring their action before the competent court.
30. Affixing and removal of seals on movable property
31. Execution of will to be stayed in certain casesWhenever it shall come to the knowledge of the Curator that a will in any succession in which absent heirs are interested, is invalid or contains any provisions infringing the legal rights of any absent party not duly represented in Seychelles, the Curator shall have the right to move the Supreme Court for a rule calling upon the executors and all parties interested to show cause why the execution of the will should not stayed, wholly or partly for a reasonable time, so that the Curator may obtain special instructions from such absent heir or heirs, or that such absent heir or heirs may appear personally or by some duly authorised agent:Provided also that it shall be lawful for the court to allow the executor or universal legatees, or next of kin, as the case may be, to take any measures which may prevent loss or injury to any portion of the estate, real or personal.
32. Power to compromise and refer to arbitration
33. Curator to purchase in certain cases and borrow moneyIn case of the sale by licitation of any property a co owner of which is represented by the Curator, he may upon an order of a Judge bid for or purchase the same for the benefit of the owner represented by him.He may in any case, upon the order of a Judge, borrow money upon mortgage on any immovable property vested in him:Provided that no such order shall be made unless the Judge is satisfied that it is advisable in the interests of the succession or absentees, to which or to whom such property belongs or necessary for the improvement or preservation of such property, that the property should be so purchased, or that the money should be so borrowed.
34. Payments by the Curator
Control over executors
35. Curator to superintend the administration of executors in certain cases
36. Divesting order may be made on application of person entitledAny person claiming to be entitled to administer any succession vested in the Curator, or to represent absentees represented by the Curator, or to be entitled to property vested in the Curator as unclaimed, or who having been an absentee has returned to Seychelles, may apply to the court for an order divesting the Curator of such succession, or of the representation of such absentee or former absentees, or of the ownership of such property, as the case may be. Such order may be made upon a summons calling upon the Curator to show cause why it should not be made.
37. Divesting order may be applied for by CuratorIn case any person represented by the Curator is, or is represented by any other person, in Seychelles, the Curator may himself apply for a divesting order.Such order may be made by a Judge upon a summons calling upon such person or representative to show cause why it should not be made.
38. Payment of charges to be made a condition of divesting orderIn no case shall any divesting order be made, except after payment or tender by the person in whose favour it is made of all charges due to the Curator or the Government, in respect of the property or rights involved or unless the Curator holds sufficient funds to meet all such charges, in which case the order shall be made subject to the condition that all charges shall be deducted from such funds.
39. Non-liability of Government or CuratorWhenever any estate or property shall have been handed over under a divesting order, neither the Government nor the Curator shall be liable to any person subsequently claiming such estate or property.Provided nothing herein contained shall prevent such other person from claiming from the person to whom the estate or property may have been delivered, any thing by him unduly received from the Curator.
40. Power to appoint a Curator ad litemWhenever the Curator of Vacant Estates shall be plaintiff in a suit or action at law, on account of any vacant estate, and shall have been made a defendant in the same suit or action at law, on account of another vacant estate, it shall be lawful for the President to appoint a Curator ad litem.
41. Attorney and counsel
42. Real property how dealt withWhenever the Curator shall have under his charge real property, he may give notice of the fact to the Senior Lands Officer, whose duty it shall then be to keep, watch, superintend and protect such property on behalf and at the expense of the vacant estate concerned.
43. Estate of small value
44. Meaning of vesting orderIn this Act the expression "vesting order" means an order made by a Judge under section 14 and also includes any judgment, order or decree of any court, tribunal, magistrate or Judge by which any Curator to a vacant succession within the meaning of the Civil Code of Seychelles or any Curator of intestate estates, or Curator of Vacant Estates, under any Act now repealed, or under Ordinance No. 12 of 1876 has been sent or put in possession of or vested with, any succession, property or right before the commencement of this Act; and the expression "Curator of Vacant Estates" or "the Curator" includes any Curator mentioned in any such judgment, or order or decree.
45. InterpretationIn this Act unless the context otherwise requires:"Curator" means the Curator of Vacant Estates."Judge" means a Judge of the Supreme Court and includes the Chief Justice and a Puisne Judge."Court" means the Supreme Court."Registrar" includes "Assistant Registrar" and any clerk authorised to act in place of the Registrar.
History of this document
01 July 2021
Repealed by Curatelle Act, 2021
01 December 2014 this version
01 July 1892