Hine v. Morse
218 U.S. 493 (1910)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Hine v. Morse, 218 U.S. 493 (1910)

Hine v. Morse

No. 25

Argued November 1, 1910

Decided November 28, 1910

218 U.S. 493

Syllabus

Even if the bill seeking a sale of infant's property for reinvestment does not clearly state a case within the authority of the court, the decree of sale, appointment of trustee, and execution of his bond are not mere nullities subject to collateral attack.

The Supreme Court of the District of Columbia is one of general jurisdiction

Page 218 U. S. 494

possessing all powers conferred on circuit and district courts of the United States -- in fact, the usual powers incident to a court of equity at the date of the Revolution not incompatible with the changed forms and principles of government or affected by subsequent legislation. Clark v. Mathewson, 7 App.D.C. 382. The inherent power of a court of equity of general jurisdiction over the persons and estates of infants is very wide. Its errors in regard to a sale of real estate of infants are reversible by appellate procedure, but until so corrected, its judgment is not a nullity.

The voluntary surety on the bond of a trustee in a proceeding to sell real estate is estopped to attack the validity of the decree appointing the trustee or of the bond.

Where the demurrer to one plea of the answer was overruled and plaintiff did not plead further, reversal of the judgment and sustaining the demurrer to that plea leaves the other pleas open to be dealt with by the court below.

This Court only having before it the demurrer on one plea to this answer which was overruled below, it reverses the judgment and sustains the demurrer, and other pleas in defense remain at issue, and this Court will not consider them on this appeal.

31 App.D.C. 433 reversed.

The facts, which involve the liability of a surety on a bond given for faithful performance of his duty by a trustee appointed to sell the interest of an infant in real estate, are stated in the opinion.

Page 218 U. S. 499

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