§ 3155.  Persons entitled.

(a)  Letters testamentary.--Letters testamentary shall be granted by the register to the executor designated in the will, whether or not he has declined a trust under the will.

(b)  Letters of administration.--Letters of administration shall be granted by the register, in such form as the case shall require, to one or more of those hereinafter mentioned and, except for good cause, in the following order:

(1)  Those entitled to the residuary estate under the will.

(2)  The surviving spouse.

(3)  Those entitled under the intestate law as the register, in his discretion, shall judge will best administer the estate, giving preference, however, according to the sizes of the shares of those in this class.

(4)  The principal creditors of the decedent at the time of his death.

(5)  Other fit persons.

(6)  If anyone of the foregoing shall renounce his right to letters of administration, the register, in his discretion, may appoint a nominee of the person so renouncing in preference to the persons set forth in any succeeding paragraph.

(7)  A guardianship support agency serving as guardian of an incapacitated person who dies during the guardianship administered pursuant to Subchapter F of Chapter 55 (relating to guardianship support).

(8)  A redevelopment authority formed pursuant to the act of May 24, 1945 (P.L.991, No.385), known as the Urban Redevelopment Law.

(c)  Time limitation.--Except with the consent of those enumerated in paragraphs (1), (2) and (3), no letters shall be issued to those enumerated in paragraph (4), (5) or (8) of subsection (b) until 30 days after the decedent's death.

(d)  Death charges.--Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (a) and (b), the register shall not grant letters testamentary or letters of administration to any person charged, whether by indictment, information or otherwise, by the United States, the Commonwealth or any of the several states, with voluntary manslaughter or homicide, except homicide by vehicle, in connection with a decedent's death unless and until the charge is withdrawn, dismissed or a verdict of not guilty is returned.


(Apr. 16, 1992, P.L.108, No.24, eff. 60 days; Dec. 20, 2000, P.L.838, No.118, eff. 60 days; Nov. 29, 2006, P.L.1536, No.171, eff. 60 days)


Cross References.  Section 3155 is referred to in sections 3181, 3182 of this title.