N.Y. Social Services Law Section 141
Burial of the dead


1.

(a) If a recipient of public assistance or care or other person dies leaving no funds or insurance sufficient to pay the expense of his burial, the relatives who survive him who were or would have been responsible for his support, pursuant to § 101 (Liability of relatives to support)section one hundred one of this chapter, shall be responsible for such expense to the extent that they are able to pay the same in whole or in part; and the public welfare official paying such expense or any part thereof may recover all or part of the amounts expended by him from such relatives, who shall be severally and jointly liable therefor in accordance with their respective abilities.

(b)

Except as otherwise provided the public welfare district, town or city which was or would have been responsible for furnishing public assistance or care to the person while alive shall provide for the care, removal and burial of the body of a recipient of public assistance or care who shall die, or of a person found dead in the public welfare district.

2.

If, when such provision is made by a public welfare district, town or city, the deceased leave no funds or insurance sufficient to pay the expense of his burial and there are no known relatives, friends or personal representatives liable or willing to become responsible for such expense, the expense of such burial shall be a charge on such public welfare district, town or city but the public welfare official thereof may recover the same in whole or in part from the relatives of the deceased liable therefor.

3.

(a) When burial arrangements for a recipient of public assistance or care are made by relatives or friends of the deceased and the expense of such burial does not exceed the amount fixed by the appropriate public welfare official or the local appropriating body for similar burials in similar circumstances, such public welfare official may:

(1)

if such relatives or friends were required to pay the expense of such burial in order to arrange the same, wholly or partly reimburse them, from assets transferred or assigned to such social services official by or on behalf of the deceased recipient; but he shall not reimburse a legally responsible relative of the deceased for any part of the amount paid by him which in the judgment of such social services official such relative is able to bear; nor shall such official expend from such assets for such purpose more than is permitted by or pursuant to this section, other provisions of this chapter and regulations of the department.

(2)

pay part of the expense of such burial, if, and to the extent and under the circumstances, permitted by his local policy, which shall not be inconsistent with this chapter, and the regulations of the department; but in no case shall such social services official pay more than the balance remaining to be paid after the total of the amounts paid or to be paid by all other sources, including payments made or to be made by such legally responsible relatives of the deceased as are in the judgment of such official able to bear the same, is credited to and deducted from such expense.

(b)

In no case shall a public welfare official expend, pursuant to the provisions of this section or any other provision of this chapter, for the burial of a recipient of public assistance or care, from assets transferred or assigned to him by or on behalf of such recipient, an amount which shall be in excess of five hundred dollars.

4.

For purposes of this section, the term “recipient of public assistance and care” shall include persons receiving federal supplemental security income benefits pursuant to title sixteen of the federal social security act and/or additional state payments pursuant to title six of article 5 (Assistance and Care)article five of this chapter.

5.

Expenditures for burial made by social services districts, cities and towns pursuant to the provisions of this chapter shall, if approved by the department, be subject to reimbursement by the state, in accordance with the regulations of the department to the extent of one hundred per centum thereof in the case of needy Native Americans and members of their families residing on a reservation within the state and fifty per centum in all other cases, and such reimbursement shall be claimed and paid in accordance with the procedure prescribed by and pursuant to section one hundred fifty-three. However, only so much of such an expenditure as does not exceed two hundred fifty dollars for expenditures made prior to October first, nineteen hundred eighty-six, four hundred dollars for expenditures made on and after October first, nineteen hundred eighty-six and prior to April first, nineteen hundred eighty-seven and nine hundred dollars for expenditures made on and after April first, nineteen hundred eighty-seven shall be subject to reimbursement by the state.

6.

If an applicant for or a recipient of public assistance or care or of medical assistance under section two hundred nine or three hundred sixty-six of this chapter establishes an irrevocable trust for the payment of his or her funeral expenses, or those of a family member, under General Business Law § 453 (Moneys paid in connection with agreements for funeral merchandise or services in advance of need to be kept on deposit pending use or rep...)section four hundred fifty-three of the general business law, any funds remaining in such trust after the payment of all funeral expenses must be paid over to the social services official responsible for arranging for burials under this section in the local government subdivision where the decedent resided.

Source: Section 141 — Burial of the dead, https://www.­nysenate.­gov/legislation/laws/SOS/141 (updated Sep. 22, 2014; accessed Jul. 13, 2024).

131
Assistance, care and services to be given
131‑A
Monthly grants and allowances of public assistance
131‑AA
Monthly statistical reports
131‑AAA
Availability of adverse childhood experiences services
131‑B
Fees for services
131‑BB
Family homelessness and eviction prevention supplement program
131‑C
Inclusion of parents and siblings of a minor in the public assistance household
131‑D
Substance abuse rehabilitative and preventive services
131‑E
Family planning services
131‑F
Retroactive social security benefit increases
131‑G
Authority to accept public and private gifts
131‑H
Authority to operate family homes for adults
131‑I
Social services districts
131‑I*2
Family loan program
131‑J
Certain utility deposits
131‑K
Undocumented noncitizens
131‑L
Exclusion of agent orange benefits
131‑M
Information on resource referral services
131‑N
Exemption of income and resources
131‑O
Personal allowances accounts
131‑P
Group health insurance benefits
131‑Q
Electronic payment file transfer system pilot project
131‑R
Liability for reimbursement of public assistance benefits
131‑S
Payments made for utility service for recipients of public assistance benefits, supplemental security income benefits or additional state...
131‑SS
Automated identification of OTDA assistance program participants
131‑T
Periodic reporting
131‑U
Domestic violence services
131‑V
Temporary emergency shelter
131‑W
Limitations in the payment of rent arrears
131‑X
Reverse mortgage loans
131‑Z
Child assistance program
131‑ZZ
Child poverty reduction
132
Investigation of applications
132‑A
Children born out of wedlock
133
Temporary preinvestigation emergency needs assistance or care
133‑A
Contracts for distribution of public assistance grants
134
Supervision
134‑A
Conduct of investigation
134‑B
Front end detection system
134‑C
Requirement to publicly post information
135
Cooperation of public welfare officials
136
Protection of public welfare records
136‑A
Information from state tax commission and the comptroller
137
Exemption from levy and execution
137‑A
Exemption of earnings of recipients from assignment, income execution and installment payment order
138‑A
Responsibility of the department for recipients in family care
139‑A
Special provisions to avoid abuse of assistance and care
141
Burial of the dead
142
Exclusiveness of eligibility requirements
142‑A
Federal economic opportunity act grants or payments
142‑B
Federal manpower development training act and elementary and secondary education act grants or payments
143
Information to be given by employers of labor to social services officials, the department, family court and the state department of ment...
143‑A
Information to be given to public welfare officials by retail instalment sellers, small loan companies and sales finance companies
143‑B
Avoidance of abuses in connection with rent checks
143‑C
Avoidance of abuses in connection with rent security deposits
144
Power of public welfare officials and service officers to administer oaths
144‑A
Information to be given to officials of the department and of social services districts
145
Penalties
145‑A
Judgment liens
145‑B
False statements
145‑C
Sanctions
146
Penalty for the sale or exchange of assistance supplies
147
Misuse of food stamps, food stamp program coupons, authorization cards and electronic access devices
148
Penalty for unlawfully bringing a needy person into a public welfare district
149
Penalty for bringing a needy person into the state
150
Penalty for neglect to report or for making false report
151
Penalties for cashing public assistance checks or accepting electronic benefit transfers from public assistance recipients
152
Payments to the New York public welfare association
152‑A
Burial reserves for certain recipients of public assistance or care from assigned assets
152‑B
Surplus after recovery of cost of public assistance and care
152‑C
Menstrual products
152‑D
Replacement of stolen public assistance

Accessed:
Jul. 13, 2024

Last modified:
Sep. 22, 2014

§ 141’s source at nysenate​.gov

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