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New York Estate Administration Lawyer

Estate administration is a crucial process that involves managing and distributing a person's assets and liabilities after their death. In New York, estate administration can be a complex and overwhelming process that requires the guidance and expertise of a skilled legal professional. The experienced New York estate administration lawyers at Stephen Bilkis & Associates have a deep understanding of the New York’s complex probate and estate laws, and we use our knowledge to ensure that the estate is distributed fairly and efficiently. We work closely with executors, administrators, and family members to provide comprehensive legal guidance throughout the entire estate administration process.

Steps in New York Estate Administration

It is important to note that estate administration can be a lengthy process. In some cases, it can take several months or even years to fully administer an estate. This is particularly true if there are disputes among the beneficiaries or complex assets that need to be sold or managed.

Filing a petition and appointing the executor. The first step in the estate administration process is to determine whether the decedent had a will. If the decedent did have a will, the will must be filed with the Surrogate's Court in the county where the decedent resided. If the decedent did not have a will, a petition for administration must be filed. The petition should include information about the decedent, including their name, date of death, and any known heirs or beneficiaries. Once the petition is filed, the Surrogate's Court will review it and may appoint executor (if there was a will) or administrator (if there was not a will) to administer the estate. It is important to work with an experienced New York estate administration lawyer to ensure that the petition is filed correctly and to navigate the estate administration process.

The executor is responsible for gathering the decedent's assets, paying any debts or taxes owed by the estate, and distributing the remaining assets to the beneficiaries named in the will. The executor also has a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of the estate and its beneficiaries.

Paying estate debt. One of the most important aspects of estate administration is ensuring that the decedent's debts are paid. This includes any outstanding taxes, mortgages, and other debts. If the estate does not have enough assets to pay its debts, the executor may need to sell assets or take out loans to cover the outstanding balances.

Distribution of assets. Another important aspect of estate administration is the distribution of assets to the beneficiaries named in the will. The executor must ensure that the assets are distributed in accordance with the will's provisions and that the beneficiaries receive their rightful share of the estate. If there are disputes among the beneficiaries, the executor may need to seek guidance from the Surrogate's Court to resolve the matter.

Notable New York Cases Relating to Estate Administration

Estate administration in New York is a complex process that involves the management and distribution of a person's assets after they pass away. During this process, legal issues can arise that require the expertise of an experienced New York estate administration lawyer. These cases demonstrate the complexities of estate administration in New York.

  • In re Probate Proceeding Will Quinn, 2017 N.Y. Slip Op. 31649 (N.Y. Surr. Ct. 2017)-
    In this probate matter concerning the estate of Cecilia Quinn, a motion is filed by the attorney for Eileen Quinn, objecting to Maureen Quinn's appointment as executor. The motion seeks various orders, including compelling discovery responses, precluding claims and defenses, vacating preliminary letters testamentary granted to Maureen, and substituting Eileen as executor. Eileen alleges financial misconduct by Maureen. However, the court denies the motion to compel additional discovery beyond specified dates, rejects preclusion, refuses to vacate preliminary letters, and dismisses the request to appoint Eileen. The cross-motion by Maureen for sanctions and a stay of proceedings is also denied.
  • In re Berlin, 135 A.D.3d 746, 24 N.Y.S.3d 320 (N.Y. App. Div. 2016). The co-executors, Martin Berlin and Leonard Berlin, were removed from their roles in the probate proceeding due to substantial animosity and interference with the administration of Sandra Berlin's estate. The Surrogate's Court found that the intense hostility between Martin and Leonard had already interfered with the efficient handling of Sandra's estate, which had been pending for a decade and had generated significant litigation during their brief co-executorship. The court exercised its discretion, noting that the ongoing animosity would hinder future cooperation, making it impractical for them to work together towards the prompt disposition of Sandra's estate. Consequently, the court decided to remove both co-executors, ensuring a more expedient administration of the estate.
Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates

Estate administration is a critical process that requires legal expertise and guidance. At Stephen Bilkis & Associates we understand that every estate is unique and requires individual attention to ensure that the process is completed smoothly and efficiently. Our team of experienced estate administration attorneys serving New York is dedicated to helping our clients navigate the legal complexities of estate administration and provide them with peace of mind during what can be a challenging time. We believe in providing our clients with personalized and compassionate legal services, and we work tirelessly to ensure that their needs are met every step of the way. We are committed to helping our clients achieve their goals and objectives while minimizing stress and conflicts during the estate administration process. If you need legal assistance with estate administration in New York, our law firm is here to help. Contact us at 800-696-9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: Manhattan, Long Island, Nassau County, Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Suffolk County, Bronx, and Westchester County.

Client Reviews
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.
From the very first phone call to Stephen Bilkis' office, the staff was extremely polite and helpful in assisting me. Mr. Bilkis was honest and upfront with me from the beginning in what he projected the outcome of my case would be; in the end we got better results than either of us anticipated. He was very genuine and compassionate in understanding my situation and how this legal matter could effect not only myself but my family as well. I highly recommend this law firm and will most definitely continue using them for any future legal needs. Jarrett
Stephen has handled numerous estate matters, criminal matters and family court matters effectively and with a goal-oriented approach. He gets great results and is a results-oriented attorney. Dustin