Estate of Turturino v. Turturino; Turturino v. Romanczak
When the decedent's property cannot be physically divided, a court can find it is in the best interests of the parties to order the property's sale. Charles Turturino owned 100 percent of a parcel of property known as lot 6. Turturino's sibling, Virginia Sanborn, owned 100 percent of a parcel of property known as lot 5. A family residence was built on the adjoining lots. Prior to his death, Charles Turturino lived with Charlene Turturino on the first floor and Sanborn controlled the second floor. After he passed away, Sanborn requested that the Probate Court partition the property. The Probate Court ordered the property's sale and ordered Charlene Turturino to vacate the property. Charlene Turturino filed an appeal to the Superior Court, which reviewed de novo. The Superior Court found that the real property cannot be physically divided. "Because the house straddles nonconforming lots," wrote the court, "it cannot be sold except as a unit." If Charlene Turturino is permitted to remain on the property, that benefits her, to the exclusion of anyone else. The other beneficiary of the estate of Charles Turturino will not receive any benefit, if Charlene remains. The property is not insured. If a fire damages the property, there is no insurance coverage. Real property taxes have not been paid and continue to accumulate. Charlene Turturino and the estate do not possess the ability to pay, unless the property is sold. The property is at risk of foreclosure. A sale is in the best interests of the parties, because the proceeds of the sale can be divided, and the real property cannot. "Upon the sale," wrote the court, "all parties concerned will get their fair share." The court authorized the estate to market and sell the property and to evict Charlene Turturino.