Ontario Government Record Series RG 22-305

York County Surrogate Court estate files

About these records

York County Surrogate Court estate files
Dates of Creation
Physical Description

812.1 metres of textual records

2150 reels of microfilm

Scope and Content

Series consists of estate files containing the original documentation filed with the court in proceedings leading to a grant of probate or administration. Typically, an estate file includes the original will (in cases of probate), administration bonds (in cases of administration), petitions for probate or administration and supporting affidavits, and the order for probate or administration.

While some inventories of estates exist for the early period, the occurrence of these in the files becomes more frequent after 1892 when the Succession Duty Act required detailed inventories and lists of heirs to be included in the files of taxable estates. When the value of taxable estates was lowered by an amendment to the act in 1907, the presence of these inventories and lists becomes even more common.

If the will or the grant of probate of administration was contested, the estate file should also include the caveat filed against the estate, relevant citations and affidavits, and the final judgment issued by the court.

Estate files prior to 1865 are organized alphabetically. From 1865 onwards, files are organized numerically by grant number.

Administrative History or Biographical Sketch

Click on the link(s) below for more information.

Ontario. Surrogate Courts
Restrictions on Access
Researchers must use the microfilm version whenever it is available. Otherwise, no restrictions on access.
Terms For Use and Reproduction
Copyright is primarily held by the Crown. There are no restrictions on reproduction. Permission of the Archives of Ontario is required for publication; submit a Request for Permission to Publish, Exhibit or Broadcast form.
Availability of Other Formats

The pre-1968 estate files are available on microfilm.

The Archives of Ontario can only certify those estate files where original files are in its custody.

If you require certified copies of York County estate files for which originals are not in Archives of Ontario custody, you must also contact the Estates Office at the address given below in the "How to Order Records" note.


Accruals are received each year by approved records schedule.

Finding Aid
There is a listing of 1800-1930 microfilm reels for York County in the User's Guide to Surrogate Courts and Surrogate Clerk Microfilm Reels. For an index of estate files 1940-1967, refer to microfilm MS 869, which provides an easy-to-use listing ordered alphabetically by the last name of the deceased. For those not listed on MS 869, and for all estate files 1800-1955, refer to microfilm GS 2, reels 232 and 236. An online list is available for part of this series. Alphabetically arranged estate files dated 1800-1864 are listed.

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Agency or agencies that created these records

These records were created by the following Ontario government agency or agencies. Click on the agency reference code for information about this agency and other records it created.

1800-1976 :

Surrogate Courts (BA44)

How to order these records

From our Reading Rooms

For pre-1859 estate files, consult the online listing of self-service microfilm in the Finding Aid section.

For 1859-1967 files, consult the self-service microfilm listing for York County available online in the Microfilm Interloan Catalogue or in the User's Guide to Surrogate Courts and Surrogate Clerk Microfilm Reels in the Archives' Reading Room.

The post-1967 files have not been microfilmed so the original records must be requested from offsite storage. A minimum of 1 business day is required to retrieve the material onsite. Please contact a Reference archivist for more information on how to order these records.

Scroll up to "Finding Aid" for more information about any available finding aids or listings.

By Microfilm Interloan
Some of this material is available through the Archives of Ontario's Microfilm Interloan Service, which allows you to borrow microfilmed archival records through a library or other institution that participates in the interlibrary loan system.