Estate Planning And Administration

Why do you need a comprehensive estate plan? If you do not have a will, you give up control and New York intestacy laws will decide who inherits your property and assets. Because your situation is unique, you need to speak with an experienced wills and trusts lawyer to ensure that you have the right documents to clearly express your desires.

At my law office in New Paltz, I will sit down with you and listen to your circumstances. With more than 40 years of legal experience, I have helped many clients draft estate plans. Your estate plan will generally include a will, living will and power of attorney. I will draft these documents for you in a timely manner, so you can rest assured that you have a legally binding estate plan in place.

If you have an estate plan, you should review it after a major life change such as a marriage, birth, divorce or death.

When Do You Need A Trust?

Trusts are flexible and can be used in many circumstances. If you have a loved one with special needs, a trust can ensure that a gift does not disqualify him or her from government benefits. Trusts also come into play when leaving a gift to a minor.

In certain cases, to conserve your assets you may want to place them in a trust while alive as part of the Medicaid planning process. A spouse in New York may refuse to pay Medicaid expenses to avoid depleting assets, which can also affect how you plan your estate. We can advise and assist you in making decisions as to whether such a trust is right for you.

Timely Estate Administration

Whether or not my office completed the estate plan, I can assist your family with estate administration after the death of a loved one. In New York, the process can often appear confusing unless you are familiar with how the Surrogate's Court operates. I have extensive experience in this process, which includes having the court appoint the proper individual to collect the assets of the estate, to determine proper debts for payment and to distribute remaining property and assets according to the will or rules of intestacy (when no will exists).

To schedule a time to start the estate planning process or seek assistance with winding up an estate, please send an email or call the office at 845-255-9100.