What Even Lawyers Don’t Know
About New York Surrogate’s Court

The Surrogate’s Court in the State of New York hears cases involving the affairs of decedents, the administration of estates, the probate of wills, and adoptions. But did you know that even lawyers don’t know everything involving bonding and the New York Surrogate’s Court?

The New York Surrogate’s Court requires that a beneficiary in an intestacy proceeding obtain a bond when he/she is appointed as administrator of an estate. In other words, if there is no will and the bond requirement is not waived, the proposed administrator must qualify and post an estate bond.

However, many of those proposed fiduciaries are unable to be approved to purchase the bond necessary to become the fiduciary. That limits the potential pool of administrators of estates. But once they are approved, the bond must be in proportion to the beneficiary’s interest in the estate.

The New York Surrogate’s Court may also require administrators to be bonded in connection with “preliminary letters” of administration, and in other circumstances. Preliminary letters often make sense to obtain when there is a delay in a probate or administration hearing and something such as selling real estate must be done in the meantime.

Colonial Surety Company is a direct and digital insurance company, and underwrites New York administrator  and other court and fiduciary bonds.   For more information on the New York Surrogate’s Court and what you may not know, click here.

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Alistair Lee

Commercial Surety Analyst
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