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Ancillary Probate: Recovering assets in New York State when Decedent Resided Out of State

May 19, 2022 • Posted By Maria Stamatelatos • Trusts and Estates

What do you do if a decedent permanently resided in another state but owned a home or tangible personal property in New York State? Once letters testamentary or letters of adinistraytion are granted in the state of residence, a second petition for ancillary probate must be filed in New York State. The “ancillary probate” petition is given this name because it is second to the primary petition, which was filed in the state of residence. The petition filed in the state of residence is called a probate petition if decedent died leaving a will and is called an administration petition if decedent died leaving no will. Letters testamentary are granting in  probate proceeding and letters of administration are granted in an administration proceeding.

The petition for an ancillary proceeding may be filed by any person interested in a decedent’s estate. This petition will be filed in the Surrogate’s Court county where the property is located. I.e. if decedent owned a home in Queens, the petition for ancillary proceeding will be filed in the Queens County Surrogates Court. After the petition is filed, the Surrogates Court will appoint a personal representative, usually the petitioner of the ancillary proceeding, to collect the New York assets, pay off any debts or creditors located in New York State and to pay New York State income or estate taxes.

Once the collection and payment process is complete and any Federal estate taxes have been satisfied, the personal representative will distribute the property to either the personal representative to whom letters testamentary or letters of administration were issued in the state where decedent resided.

Should you have any additional questions, feel free to reach out to Maria E. Stamatelatos at