One of the most valuable assets compromising an estate is real estate. Typically, a decedent may own a home which he occupied with other individuals or which third parties occupied alone.
When the Surrogate’s Courts appoints an Administrator or Executor, the duties of the fiduciary often include securing and selling the real estate. The real estate may need to be sold to satisfy estate obligations such as a mortgage or credit card bills or other debt obligations. Also, the property may need to be liquidated to divide up the proceeds among a number of beneficiaries.
There are many situations where the persons residing in the estate property refuse to vacate. I have represented numerous estates where landlord tenant eviction proceedings were required to evict persons occupying estate property. Additionally, there are estate litigation proceedings that can be commenced in the Surrogate’s Court to remove persons from estate property. These proceedings can be ejectment cases or turn-over proceedings pursuant to Surrogate’s Court Procedure Act 2103 entitled “Proceeding by fiduciary to discover property withheld or obtain information”.