(a) If the deceased dies intestate, the right to act as a voluntary administrator is hereby given first to the surviving adult spouse, if any, of the decedent and if there be none or if the spouse renounce, then in order to a competent adult who is a child or grandchild, parent, brother or sister, niece or nephew or aunt or uncle of the decedent, or if there be no such person who will act, then to the guardian of the property of an infant, the committee of the property of any incompetent person or the conservator of the property of a conservatee who is a distributee and if none of the foregoing named persons will act or if there are no known distributees within the categories listed above, then to the chief fiscal officer of the county except in those counties in which a public administrator has been appointed under articles eleven and twelve of this act. After the surviving spouse, the first distributee within the class of persons entitled or if no distributee will act or there are no known distributees within the class of persons entitled, then the chief fiscal officer of the county as above who makes and files the required affidavit, is authorized to act as voluntary administrator, or as successor voluntary administrator in the event of the death or resignation of the voluntary administrator before the completion of the settlement of the estate.

Terms Used In N.Y. Surrogate's Court Procedure Law 1303

  • Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
  • Decedent: A deceased person.
  • Executor: A male person named in a will to carry out the decedent
  • Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
  • Intestate: Dying without leaving a will.
  • Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
  • Testate: To die leaving a will.

(b) If the deceased dies testate, the named executor or alternate executor shall have the first right to act as voluntary administrator, upon filing the last will and testament with the surrogate’s court. If the named executor or alternate executor renounces or fails to qualify by filing the required affidavit within thirty days after the last will and testament has been filed in the surrogate’s court, then any adult person who would be entitled to petition for letters of administration with will annexed under section 1418 of this chapter may file the required affidavit and have the right to act as voluntary administrator.

(c) No person other than one hereinbefore mentioned can become a voluntary administrator.