Notice concerning the operations of the New York County Surrogate’s Court commencing on November 30, 2020:
- OPERATIONS: The court will be open but operating with a reduced number of staff members. Filings may be made in person by dropping documents off in the courthouse. Drop off boxes are located on the 5th Floor of the courthouse adjacent to the Court Officer’s desk.
- EMERGENCY APPLICATIONS: In-person service is reserved for emergency applications. Court users with an urgent application should report to room 303 or call 646-386-5352. Parties with urgent matters may contact the Department in which the case will be filed. Records Room appointments can be arranged; otherwise requests should be made via email. A list of Departments, their email addresses and telephone numbers may be found below. See also below information about the Help Center.
- FILING PAPERS WITH THE COURT:
- All types of petitions, motions and documents are being accepted for filing. Most operations will continue to be conducted virtually or remotely and delays in the processing of these matters are unavoidable.
- Papers may be:
- filed by mail (USPS or any express mail service) or
- e-filed (for more information, visit the NYSCEF web page at www.nycourts.gov/efile); or
- brought to the courthouse in person and placed in the boxes located by the Court Officer’s desk on the 5th Floor.
- All filings should include contact information for petitioner or petitioner’s counsel, including an email address and telephone number.
- .Filed papers will be reviewed by the court staff in the order in which they are received but not necessarily on the same date that they are filed. Court personnel may contact petitioners, or their counsel as needed once filed papers are reviewed
- VISITING THE COURTHOUSE: Safety measures and precautions are being taken to protect the health of employees and court users.
- Court staff is equipped with P.P.E., including face masks and face shields.
- Hand sanitizer dispensers, floor markers to assist with physical distancing and plexiglass partitions have been installed throughout the courthouse.
- If you must visit the courthouse (for dropping off documents or emergency applications), please note that you are required to wear a mask and submit to temperature screening and questioning upon entry.
- Please refrain from visiting the courthouse if you:
- Have been diagnosed with, or have had close contact with anyone diagnosed with, COVID-19 within the last two weeks;
- Have been directed to quarantine, isolate or self-monitor at home for the Coronavirus by any doctor, hospital or health agency within the last two weeks;
- Have flu-like symptoms (including cough, shortness of breath, fever [100 F or higher], chills, headache)
- Pursuant to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Order and the directives of the Unified Court System, before you visit the courthouse you will be required to quarantine for 14 days if you have traveled to New York from another country. Visitors from all states except states contiguous to New York (NJ, MA, CT, PA and VT) must also comply with Governor Cuomo’s quarantine directive (see https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-traveladvisory#restricted-states ).
- TYPES OF CASES THAT ARE BEING DETERMINED: The court will process and determine all uncontested matters (in which waivers and consents have been fully executed and for which no citation need be issued). Entertainment of contested matters is being determined on a case-by-case basis. Parties with urgent matters may contact the Department in which the case will be filed. Again, a list of Departments, their email addresses and telephone numbers may be found below. Parties in need of immediate court assistance may contact also the court attorney-referee to whom the matter has been assigned, if any.
- CITATIONS AND OTHER PROCESS: Citations or orders to show cause (as process) will continue to issue and they will direct either no in-person appearances or appearances by remote or electronic means. Litigants will be contacted by court personnel to arrange for virtual appearances.
- HELP CENTER: Unrepresented parties who need assistance may contact our Help Center at 646-386-5208 or 347-978-4068 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Staff will be able to assist via telephone or through other electronic means.
- VIRTUAL AND REMOTE APPEARANCES: Most conferences and proceedings will continue to be conducted virtually.
- TRIALS AND HEARINGS: The court will continue to conduct trials and hearings using electronic means, in particular Microsoft Teams, with all parties appearing virtually. Finalizations of adoptions and hearings in 17-A Guardianships will be scheduled and conducted through electronic means as well.
The terms of this notice are subject to modification as the need arises.
More information about the New York State Unified Court System’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic may be found here: https://www.nycourts.gov/index.shtml
Nora S. Anderson
Deputy Chief Clerk
New York County (Manhattan)
31 Chambers Street
New York, NY 10007
Serving the estates of individuals who were domiciled in New York County (Manhattan) at the time of their death.
For estate matters of decedents having been domiciled in any other county, please contact the Surrogate's Court of that county directly.
What to Do When Someone Dies
Direct Department Contacts
Miscellaneous Dept. / Calendar Clerk
(To file Affidavits of Service, Applications to Open Safe Deposit Boxes & Sealed Apartments)
(Estate & Trust Accountings)
Guardian / Adoption Department
(Infant / 17A Applications)
(Decedents leaving a will)
Administration Dept. / Small Estates
(Decedents leaving no will)
Cashier / Certificates / Certifications
Records Search & Certifications
Law Department Reception Area
New York County Public Administrator
(Estates of decedents leaving unknown heirs / Police Property Vouchers)
Phone: 212-788-8430, Room 311