Matter of Fakhra, 2023 NY Slip Op 23201 involves a dispute within a small estate proceeding following the intestate death of the decedent in May 2020. The two adult children, Sara Nabil Fakhra (Petitioner) and Aous Fakhra (Respondent), were appointed Co-Administrators of the estate. The conflict arises from Aous Fakhra’s renunciation of his interest in the estate and a subsequent disagreement regarding the effectiveness of the renunciation.
In New York, a will renunciation occurs when an individual, typically an heir or a beneficiary named in a will, formally declines or renounces their right to inherit from the deceased person’s estate. This legal process is governed by the Estates, Powers and Trusts Law (EPTL) § 2-1.11. When someone chooses to renunciate, they are essentially saying, “I don’t want to inherit what the deceased person left for me in their will.”
Renunciation is often done for various reasons, such as personal financial planning, avoiding tax implications, or addressing family dynamics. It’s a strategic decision that involves a formal written statement, signed and acknowledged by the person renouncing, stating their intention to reject the inheritance. This statement needs to be filed with the court within nine months after the effective date of the disposition, as specified by the EPTL.