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The estate laws in New York are comprised of a variety of statutes which set forth the right of individuals regarding estate inheritance.  Some of these more well-known rules relate to a decedent’s surviving spouse.  For example, as estate lawyers are aware, a surviving spouse cannot be completely disinherited.  Estates, Powers & Trusts Law Section 5-1.1A entitled “Right of election by surviving spouse” mandates that a spouse is entitled to receive essentially one-third (1/3) of…
Contesting a Last Will in New York is a complex and difficult endeavor.  The problem initially encountered, of course, is that the decedent is not available to explain exactly what occurred in connection with the preparation and execution of a Will.  As a result, the facts and evidence need to be obtained and gleaned from outside sources such as witnesses and various documents and records.  In most cases, the process is cumbersome and very time…
Preparing a New York Last Will is essential in order to dispose of assets in an orderly manner.  A Will allows a testator to provide for bequests and devises of his personal property and real estate interests according to his intentions and desires. Beneficiaries can be named and each one designated with an appropriate estate share.  The beneficiaries can be family members, friends or institutions such as charities.  Also, the dispositions can be outright or…
Estate planning in New York is important.  It provides an individual with the opportunity to memorialize the manner by which assets can be disposed of upon death.  The creation of a Last Will and sometimes a revocable or irrevocable trust develops provisions designating beneficiaries and the portion of assets they are intended to receive.  The New York Probate Lawyer Blog has published numerous articles regarding estates and trusts.  Estate lawyers are aware of the value…
Estate planning in New York has always been important.  The New York Probate Lawyer Blog has published numerous articles over the years discussing the need for, and issues involved with, a Last Will, Living Will, Health Care Proxy, Power of Attorney and Living Trust. However, as estate planning lawyers are aware, concerns about estate taxes have largely taken a back seat.  This is because during recent years, the exemption levels for incurring estate tax…
Any discussion regarding estates and trusts in New York invariably involves the Surrogate’s Court.  To most individuals not involved with the settlement of a decedent’s estate or other Court matters, proceedings in a Court named Surrogate’s Court may seem mysterious and sometimes ominous.  However, this Court and the nature of the matters it handles makes it one of the most people-oriented forums in the judicial system.  After all, most of the proceedings concern the…
Everyone talks about preparing a Last Will or engaging in estate planning.  Particularly now, with the advent of the pandemic, there is the reality of facing the need for post-death and advance directive documents.  It is easy for an individual to view planning as the simple function of disposing of assets to named individuals.  However, the actual process and considerations needed encompass much more thought and preparation.  Estate lawyers in New York City are…
It is well known that writing an estate plan is essential to have an effectual distribution of assets at death.  A lot of time and effort can be expended creating a Last Will, Living Will, Health Care Proxy and Power of Attorney that reflect a person’s desires and intentions.  The New York Probate Lawyer Blog has published numerous articles examining the planning of estates. Additionally, it should be recognized that in order for a Last…
After the death of an individual, the usual course is to proceed to have a fiduciary appointed to represent the decedent’s estate.  This is necessary in order to have someone who has the legal authority to collect the decedent’s assets, pay estate expenses and obligations and ultimately, distribute the net estate to beneficiaries. In some cases the individual would have left a Last Will and Testament, which must be probated.  This results in…
Fiduciaries in New York such as executors, administrators and trustees are obligated to account to the beneficiaries.  This means that estate and trust beneficiaries can request that they be provided with a financial accounting of the fiduciary’s activities.  An account typically has specific information contained in various schedules showing the assets and income received, the investments made, the expenses and debts that are charged against the assets and the balance of funds or assets remaining…