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Can I get out of being the administrator of a relative's estate?

Glens Falls, NY |

I was appointed the administrator of my aunt's estate in upstate New York. I have signed a retainer agreement with the estate lawyer and papers from the Surrogate's Court. My relative died intestate and didn't have any assets except a dilapidated modular home on a quarter acre lot. She also left many debts. The only guidance I have received from the estate attorney was saying it's my responsibility to sell the property and pay off the debts. I am finding it an extremely stressful situation as the property is virtually unsalable and I'm wearing myself out trying to clean it out. There's not much money to hire it done and I'm a 60 year old woman with health issues and nobody to help me. What can I do to get out of this?

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Attorney answers 3

Best Answer

The Surrogate's Court Procedure Act allows for a fiduciary to petition the court for permission to resign (Section 715). Since you have an estates attorney on retainer, you could ask her or him if you might make this application to the court.

Nothing stated in this answer, or on any pages linked to this answer, shall be construed as legal advice, nor shall anything in this answer by itself operate to create an attorney/client relationship.


Speak to the attorney. There are ways out. You may have to make a motion to be relieved.

I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 577-9797 or via email at I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


You should be able to resign and the next person in succession take over.
This would have to be approved by the court.

The answer given does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established and your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter.