Stephen Bilkis
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Bronx Surrogate Court

Are you familiar with the procedures of the Bronx Surrogate Court? Many people are not until they find themselves in the midst of a complicated estate or probate administration proceeding.

There are Surrogate Courts established throughout New York State and the Bronx County Surrogate Court is the local one that you might need to visit in the event that you are appointed as an administrator or an executor of an estate or if you have a probate dispute. The Bronx County Surrogate Court is located at 851 Grand Concourse in Bronx, New York.

Many different issues are managed under the Bronx County Surrogate Court. These courts deal with issues related to decedents and their estates as well as certain types of adoptions and guardianship proceedings.

Matters may be heard by the Surrogate Court so long as the court has jurisdiction over those relevant issues. The first of these is known as accounting. If you are the beneficiary of a trust or an estate, you might request that the fiduciary of those responsibilities file an accounting related to his or her acts within the Bronx County Surrogate Court. The fiduciary might also file this accounting in order to ask to be discharged from any liability.

Voluntary administration also appears in front of the Bronx County Surrogate Court. This is frequently referred to as small estate administration. This is a simplified process that might be most appropriate for those estates that do not exceed $30,000 in value. Voluntary letters of administration are not used to administer real property, however, so many people's estates do not fall under this category. Administration is another issue handled by the Bronx County Surrogate Court. If an individual passed away without a will, an administrative proceeding is required for a person to be appointed to collect and distribute any assets.

This is frequently referenced as an inter-state proceeding. Some of the most common issues that are handled in the Bronx County Surrogate Court have to do with probate. These include appointing an estate executor, proving the validity of the last will and testament or when a person has a challenge to the validity of a will. Some types of guardianship can be handled by the Bronx County Surrogate Court.

The two types of guardianships include appointment of a guardian over a developmentally disabled or mentally retarded individual or the appointment of a guardian over a minor under the age of 18. Furthermore, adoption can be handled by the Bronx County Surrogate Court as it relates to foreign adoptions, adult adoptions, family adoptions, stepparent adoptions, and infant adoptions. Other miscellaneous proceedings that are managed through the Bronx County Surrogate Court include removal of a fiduciary, compelling a fiduciary to account, determining a spouse's right of election, will and trust construction, surcharging a fiduciary for inappropriate acts, and setting legal fees. Your Bronx County Surrogate Court attorney can help to advise you through this process and verify that you have considered all relevant and necessary issues in your probate or estate administration case.

If there are issues in closing out the estate, such as learning that someone has filed a will contest or you develop a belief that some kind of malfeasance has occurred on the part of the executor, it’s important to have your own legal representation.

You need someone who can advise you about your individual rights. There’s a lot on the line when you make the claim that someone else has broken their fiduciary duty to the beneficiaries of an estate, so setting aside time to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible is important.

Client Reviews
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Mr. Bilkis handled both my father and mother's estate issues through very difficult times he was compassionate kind and understanding. In fact the whole firm showed great empathy. Despite the emotional hard time we were having that quickly and efficiently handle all the matters that were necessary to get us the result we desired. Can't recommend them enough. B.B.
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