What is an “Ancillary Guardian” in New York State Surrogate’s Court?

Definition of ANCILLARY GUARDIAN:
(adjective) / any person to whom ancillary letters of guardianship, whether of the person, property, or both, of an infant have been issued (SCPA § 103 [7])

Plain English translation:  A guardian appointed by a New York court for an individual who resides outside New York.

While the statutory definition refers only to infants (under 18 years of age), it also includes those who are guardians for developmentally disabled persons under Surrogate’s Court Procedure Act § 17-A.

Example: Anand is 12 years old and lives in Texas with his mother, who was appointed as his legal guardian by a Texas court. Anand’s father lived in New York until his death. In order for Anand to receive his inheritance, New York requires that a guardian of Anand’s property be appointed in New York. Anand’s mother petitioned the New York State Surrogate’s Court and was appointed as ancillary guardian for Anand’s property. Therefore, once Anand’s father’s estate is wrapped up, Anand’s share will be distributed to his mother as his ancillary guardian. 

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Samantha M. Sbrocchi
Helping people in New York and New Jersey with various probate, administration and estate litigation matters.