The Supreme Court rendered the 106-Tai-Shang-1279 Civil Decision of January 11, 2018 (hereinafter, the “Decision”), holding that if a building is old and seriously dilapidated, whether a division arrangement can fulfill the maximum efficiency of the property and meet the interest of all successors only by allowing the original users to continue their use should be further explored.
According to the facts underlying this Decision, the Plaintiff brought suit to seek a decision to divide the estate at issue for which no division agreement could be reached. The original trial court held in its decision that among the estate, the back section of Property A was seriously damaged and it was impossible to measure the entire location of the property. However, Property A was currently used by Individual A as a dental clinic, while Property B was used by the Plaintiff to run a Chinese drugstore. In view of the usage status of the above properties, Property A was bequeathed to inheritors such as Individual A, while Property B was given to the Plaintiff. The existing usage status could be respected and maintained without removing existing equipment to maximum the efficiency of each property. Dissatisfied, the Plaintiff appealed.
According to the Decision, a court decision which divides an estate and decides on its distribution should consider the interest of all inheritors as well as the interest relationship among the inheritors and the nature, prices, usage value and economic efficiency of the estate. In this case, both Property A and Property B were old buildings where Property B had been seriously dilapidated. Therefore, whether the two pieces of property had economic value that justifies continued maintenance was obviously questionable. Therefore, it was not true that whether continued use by the original users was required to achieve maximum efficiency for each property and meet the interest of all inheritors had no room for further exploration. Since the original trial court failed to investigate this point when proposing the division arrangement, the original decision was reversed and remanded.