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As part of our comprehensive Life & Estate Planning services, we represent clients in the following probate and estate administration matters: 

  • Preparing & Filing Petitions for Probate or Estate Administration in Surrogate's Court

  • Preparing & Filing all Ancillary Estate Documentation with Surrogate's Court

  • Securing & Protecting the Decedent's Assets & Tangible Personal Property   

  • Obtaining Authority for Personal Representative to Act on Behalf of the Estate 

  • Assistance with Identifying, Marshalling & Liquidating Estate Assets

  • Obtaining Appraisal & Valuation of Estate Assets 

  • Preparation & Filing of Comprehensive Estate Inventory of Assets 

  • Establishing Estate Account and Payment of Estate Expenses & Debts

  • Transfer or Sale of Decedent's Home (if applicable)

  • Submitting Claims to Collect Payment of Life Insurance Death Benefits (if applicable) 

  • Filing of Appropriate State & Federal Estate Tax Returns  

  • Distributing Remaining Estate Assets to Beneficiaries & Settlement of Estate

  • Preparation of Final Estate Accounting & Discharge of Personal Representative Upon Completion


When a person with a Last Will & Testament passes away, the Will must be submitted to the Surrogate's Court for a Probate proceeding. Probate is a court-managed process wherein the Court reviews and validates the decedent's Will, and authorizes the appointment of a Personal Representative (called the "Executor" - as designated in the Will) to act on behalf of the estate.

Once the Executor is appointed by the Surrogate's Court, the Court oversees all the steps of the Executor's management of the estate from the collection and liquidation of the estate assets, the paying of bills and debts, the filing of estate inventories and accountings, and the distribution of the estate assets to the beneficiaries (in accordance with the terms of the Will); through the final settlement and completion of the estate.  


When a person passes away without a Will, an Estate Administration proceeding needs to be commenced in the Surrogate's Court to have a Personal Representative (called the "Administrator") appointed to act on behalf of the estate. Typically, the Administrator is a family member of the decedent (i.e., a spouse, adult child, etc.). 


Once the Administrator is appointed by the Surrogate's Court, similar to the Probate process, the Court oversees all steps of the Administrator's management of the estate from the collection and liquidation of the estate assets through the distribution of the assets to the estate beneficiaries and final settlement of the estate. 

In matters of Estate Administration, since there is no Last Will & Testament indicating the decedent's wishes as to who should receive the estate assets, State law will govern how the decedent's estate is to be distributed. 


The Probate and Estate Administration process can be complicated, challenging and overwhelming.  We are here to guide and assist you throughout the process.  Whether your loved one had a Last Will & Testament or even if they didn't, we have the knowledge and experience to help you navigate through the process and alleviate the burden on you so you can focus on more important matters - coming to terms with your grief. 

If you recently suffered the loss of a loved one and wish to ensure that the estate is properly administered and that the estate assets are promptly distributed to the rightful beneficiaries, please call us today at (914) 686-7272 to schedule a consultation.

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