senate Bill S808

2011-2012 Legislative Session

Establishes a registry of wills and codicils

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 04, 2012 referred to judiciary
Jan 05, 2011 referred to judiciary

S808 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A526
Current Committee:
Senate Judiciary
Law Section:
Surrogate's Court Procedure Act
Laws Affected:
Add ยง2509, SCPA
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Session:
S240, A338

S808 - Bill Texts

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Provides that each county shall establish and maintain a registry of wills and codicils executed in that county for which the surrogate's court has jurisdiction; establishes what information shall be included in such registry.

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BILL NUMBER:S808

TITLE OF BILL:

An act
to amend the surrogate's court procedure act, in relation to
establishing a registry of wills and codicils

PURPOSE:

To establishing a registry of wills and codicils.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

This bill adds a new section 2509 to the Surrogate's
Court procedure act to require each county Surrogate to establish and
maintain a registry of wills and codicils executed in such county.
Such registry shall be available for public inspection and shall
include the following information: (a) the name of the testator or
testatrix; (b) the date on which such will or codicil was executed;
(c) if a codicil, the date of execution of the will such codicil
amends; and (d) the physical address at which such will or codicil is
located.

Under the Bill, upon the execution of any will or codicil, the
attorney for the maker of the will or codicil shall, within ten (10)
days after its execution, deliver to the Surrogate Court the
information set forth above. Such information may be delivered by
mail or electronic means.

The Bill requires the Surrogate Court to maintain the format and
content of the will registry on a computerized data base, which shall
be updated at least monthly. The Court shall provide public access to
the computerized data base in a manner that allows individuals to
search the registry by name, date or address.

Nothing in the Bill shall be construed to require any testator or
testatrix to file a will or codicil upon its execution nor shall any
will or codicil be deemed null, void or otherwise without effect due
to the failure to file.

EXISTING LAW:

Currently there is no will and codicil registry established in the
surrogate Courts nor is there an obligation upon attorneys to file
their client's wills and codicils with the Court. However, many
Surrogate Courts permit the voluntary filing of wills with the Court
for safe keeping.

JUSTIFICATION:

In many cases, upon the death of an individual, the decedent's family
and attorney (if said attorney was not the preparer of the will) are
unable to locate the decedent's most recent will.
This Bill, would begin to alleviate that problem by requiring the
attorney for the maker of a will or codicil to file a form with the


Surrogate Court indicating, among other things, the physical address
at which such will or codicil is located.

This Bill does not require that the will or codicil be placed with the
Surrogate Court. Nor would it change the practice of Surrogate Courts
permitting the voluntary filing of wills with the Court for safe
keeping. Moreover, this Bill not only applies to the attorney for the
maker of the will or codicil and not to the maker himself. An
individual who prepares his/her own will without the assistance of an
attorney would not be subject to the provisions on the Bill.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

2009-10: S.240
2007-08: S.659
2005-06: S.1476
2003-04: S.1164
2001-02: S.7277

EFFECTIVE DATE:

Ninetieth day after becoming law.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

    S. 808                                                    A. 526

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                      S E N A T E - A S S E M B L Y

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 5, 2011
                               ___________

IN SENATE -- Introduced by Sen. LAVALLE -- read twice and ordered print-
  ed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Judiciary

IN  ASSEMBLY  -- Introduced by M. of A. THIELE -- read once and referred
  to the Committee on Judiciary

AN ACT to amend the surrogate's court  procedure  act,  in  relation  to
  establishing a registry of wills and codicils

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. The surrogate's court procedure act is amended by adding  a
new section 2509 to read as follows:
S 2509. REGISTRY OF WILLS AND CODICILS
  1.  EACH  COUNTY  SHALL ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN A REGISTRY OF WILLS AND
CODICILS EXECUTED IN THE COUNTY FOR WHICH SUCH COURT  HAS  JURISDICTION.
SUCH REGISTRY SHALL BE AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC INSPECTION AND SHALL INCLUDE
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION:
  (A) THE NAME OF THE TESTATOR OR TESTATRIX;
  (B) THE DATE ON WHICH SUCH WILL OR CODICIL WAS EXECUTED;
  (C)  IF  A  CODICIL,  THE  DATE  OF EXECUTION OF THE WILL SUCH CODICIL
AMENDS; AND
  (D) THE PHYSICAL ADDRESS AT WHICH SUCH WILL OR CODICIL IS LOCATED.
  2. UPON THE EXECUTION OF ANY WILL OR CODICIL,  THE  ATTORNEY  FOR  THE
TESTATOR OR TESTATRIX SHALL, WITHIN TEN DAYS AFTER ITS EXECUTION, DELIV-
ER  TO  THE  COURT  THE INFORMATION SET FORTH IN SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS
SECTION FOR INCLUSION IN THE REGISTRY OF WILLS AND CODICILS. SUCH INFOR-
MATION MAY BE DELIVERED BY MAIL OR ELECTRONIC MEANS AND SHALL BE  DELIV-
ERED IN THE FOLLOWING FORM, OR SUBSTANTIALLY SIMILAR FORM:

                     "REGISTRY OF WILLS AND CODICILS
        COUNTY OF (INSERT COUNTY OF TESTATOR/TESTATRIX RESIDENCE)

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD03718-01-1

S. 808                              2                             A. 526

NAME OF TESTATOR/TESTATRIX:             (_______________)
DATE WILL OR CODICIL WAS EXECUTED:      (_______________)
IF CODICIL, DATE OF ORIGINAL WILL:      (_______________)
PHYSICAL ADDRESS WHERE WILL             (_______________)
IS LOCATED; NO P.O. BOX:                (_______________)
                                        (_______________)"

  3. THE COURT SHALL MAINTAIN THE FORMAT AND CONTENT OF SUCH REGISTRY ON
A  COMPUTERIZED  DATA  BASE  WHICH SHALL BE UPDATED AT LEAST MONTHLY AND
SHALL PROVIDE A METHOD FOR WHICH REGISTRY INFORMATION MAY  BE  DELIVERED
TO  THE  COURT  ELECTRONICALLY. THE COURT SHALL PROVIDE PUBLIC ACCESS TO
SUCH COMPUTERIZED DATA BASE IN  A  MANNER  THAT  ALLOWS  INDIVIDUALS  TO
SEARCH THE REGISTRY OF WILLS AND CODICILS BY NAME, DATE OR ADDRESS.
  4.  NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO REQUIRE ANY TESTATOR
OR TESTATRIX TO FILE A WILL OR CODICIL UPON ITS EXECUTION.
  5. NO WILL OR CODICIL SHALL BE DEEMED NULL, VOID OR OTHERWISE  WITHOUT
EFFECT DUE TO NONCOMPLIANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
  S  2.  This  act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall
have become a law.

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