Q. What happens if my loved one dies without a will?
A person who dies without a will is said to have died “intestate”. Because the deceased person left no direction on how to dispose of their assets, New York law provides for how those assets will be distributed among the surviving members of the decedent’s family. A certified copy of the death certificate needs to be filed with the administration petition and other supporting documents in the Surrogate’s Court located in the county in which the decedent was domiciled (had their primary residence). There will be a filing fee based on the size of the estate. It may be advisable to seek the assistance of counsel.