New York State Unified Court System

PART 207. Uniform Rules For The Surrogate's Court

Section 207.64 Omission or Redaction of Confidential Personal Information; Public Access to Certain Filings

(a) Omission or Redaction of Confidential Personal Information.

(1) Except as otherwise provided by rule or law or court order, and whether or not a sealing order is or has been sought, the parties shall omit or redact confidential personal information in papers submitted to the court for filing. For purposes of this rule, confidential personal information (“CPI”) means:

i. the taxpayer identification number of an individual or an entity, including a social security number, an employer identification number, and an individual taxpayer identification number, except the last four digits thereof; and

ii. other than in a proceeding under Article 13 of the SCPA, a financial account number, including a credit and/or debit card number, a bank account number, an investment account number, and/or an insurance account number, except the last four digits or letters thereof.

(2) The court sua sponte or on motion by any person may order a party to remove CPI from papers or to resubmit a paper with such information redacted; order the clerk to seal the papers or a portion thereof containing CPI in accordance with the requirement of 22 NYCRR §216.1 that any sealing be no broader than necessary to protect the CPI; for good cause permit the inclusion of CPI in papers; order a party to file an unredacted copy under seal for in camera review; or determine that information in a particular action is not confidential. The court shall consider the pro se status of any party in granting relief pursuant to this provision.

(3) Where a person submitting a paper to a court for filing believes in good faith that the inclusion of the full CPI described in Paragraph (1) of this subdivision is material and necessary to the adjudication of the proceeding before the court, he or she may apply to the court for leave to serve and file, together with a paper in which such information has been set forth in abbreviated form, a confidential affidavit or affirmation setting forth the s ame information in unabbreviated form, appropriately referenced to the page or pages of the paper at which the abbreviated form appears.

(4) When served with objections or a request for an inquiry or examination under SCPA 2211 or 1404 that specifies a request for particular unredacted documents previously filed in the proceeding with respect to which the objection or request for inquiry or examination relates, the party who originally served and filed the redacted document shall serve (but not file) an unredacted version upon all parties interested in the proceeding or such portion of it to which the objection or request for inquiry or examination relates.(b) Public Access to Certain Filings

The officers, clerks and employees of the court shall not permit a copy of any of the following documents to be viewed or taken by any other person than a party to the proceeding, or the attorney or counsel to a party to the proceeding, the Public Administrator or counsel thereto, counsel for any Federal, State or local governmental agency, or court personnel, or by order of the court or written permission of the Surrogate or Chief Clerk of the court. The standard for the grant of such permission in a contested matter shall be the same as required under 22 NYCRR 216.1 and applicable law :

(1) All papers and documents in proceedings instituted pursuant to Articles 17 or 17-A of the SCPA;

(2) Death certificates;

(3) Tax returns;

(4) Firearms Inventory; and

(5) Documents containing information protected from disclosure under other provisions of Federal or State law such as HIPAA for medical information, job protected services reports, material obtained from a state mental hygiene facility under MHL 33.13, and records involving alcohol or other substance abuse under 42 CFR 2.64. These examples are not intended to be exclusive.

This rule shall not preclude disclosure or copying of any index of filings maintained by the court. Any determination by the court regarding access to any filings may be the subject of an appropriate motion for clarification or reconsideration.