The evolving COVID-19 health crisis continues to be a challenge to everyone. Our clients should know that the legal matters we are assisting with remain very important to us. We remain committed to providing the same compassionate and effective counsel we are known for. Information regarding our firm, and the courts, is provided below to keep everyone in our circle up to date.
Antonelli & Antonelli is Operating at Full Capacity
On March 23, 2020, our offices transitioned to remote work in order to simultaneously protect the health of our staff and operate as closely to normal as possible. We are proud to say we have had no reduction in staff, nor in compensation, during this difficult time. We all remain here for you.
Tips on Communicating with Us
- While in-person appointments are suspended, we remain committed to prompt communication through a variety of media. Exceptions are made where appropriate.
- We remain available by phone, email, fax, and mail. Further, video conference is now readily available over a variety of platforms.
- Please only communicate by mail if you are sending original documents and have previously discussed the mailing with us.
- FedEx or UPS is preferred.
- Please do not select 'signature required' as this could cause your mailing to be returned.
- To schedule a meeting:
- Call our main number at 212-227-2424; or
- Email me directly at [email protected].
- Follow us on on Facebook and on LinkedIn.
Continual Updates on Surrogate’s Court Operations as They Evolve
We have been keeping our clients updated in real-time with respect to Surrogate’s Court operations as the New York State and New York City court systems begin to reopen.
On June 10, 2020 judges returned to their assigned courthouses with limited staff. Public in-person access to the courts remains limited; however, we are able to access court files by digital means where available. Where digital access is unavailable, copies of court files can be ordered.
The Surrogate's Courts have implemented efiling thoroughout the state. The implementation of efiling was a huge technological advancement considering that Queens was the only county in New York City with efiling capability prior to the pandemic. The rules differ from county to county, but, generally, two groups of applications are being entertained in New York City. The first group consists of matters deemed essential or those of an emergency nature. We can help determine whether a particular case falls into this category. The second group of applications are those that do not require a court date. In other words, if all necessary parties consent to the relief requested, then the courts will process the application.
Some counties, such as New York County, are issuing citations even for applications where not all necessary parties consent. Parties are directed to contact the court if they intend to object to the application. However, other counties are not yet issuing citations--providing court dates--for these matters. We are assisting clients in navigating the evolving processes in the various counties.
Further, uncontested COVID-related estate matters are now deemed essential and may be filed.
The next step in the reopening of the courts in New York City is unclear, but we can look to the procedures of various counties that are further along in the reopening process for guidance.
The volume of judges and staff in New York City courts presents a special challenge specifically with respect to virtual technology. The technological implementation and training is likely to take longer than in upstate regions. Therefore, we can expect delayed access to virtual appearances and consequently a delay in the ability to file non-essential court applications.
We are keeping our clients updated as the courts progress. We receive updates from the local courts, bar associations, and from the State’s Chief Judge and Chief Administrative Judge, and we convey that information to our clients and potential clients in real-time via direct contact and through social media. You can follow us on Facebook and on LinkedIn to stay up-to-date.
Contact Us to Discuss Your Estate Issue
If you would like to discuss how your estate issue may be affected by the evolving protocols, please contact us for a free consultation. And as always, reach out to us with any concerns you may have.
Very truly yours,
Daniel R. Antonelli