Estate planning is important for everyone regardless of the value of their estate. But estate planning does not end with writing a will to dispose the estate thereof. There are so many considerations and eventualities to plan towards, and that is why our estate planning law firm is renowned for its systematic and holistic approach to estate planning.
We offer comprehensive estate planning to our clients in Glen Head, 11545 and all other New York Counties. Our approach is targeted at creating for you an estate plan that covers all your needs both during life and after death. To this end, the following are core considerations in our estate planning:
- Asset transfer
- Asset protection
- Incapacity planning
- Tax planning
A fundamental step in estate planning is making decisions as regards the disbursement of your estate when you die. Where do you want each asset to go? How do you ensure that they go where you intend, and in what way? These and many others are questions to answer when considering asset transfer. We help in establishing wills and trusts written in clear terms such that your exact wishes are known and could be executed accurately when you pass away.
In transferring assets, only those held in your name only can be transferred using a will. In some cases, you would have to retitle some asset ownership and change beneficiary designations as the case may be.
We also ensure that your minors would be well taken care of should you die before they become adults. This we do by establishing child trusts or guardianship in your Will. By reason of New York Law, children below 18 are not allowed to inherit.
Depending on the nature of your estate, probate can be very costly and complicated. New York currently has not adopted the Uniform Probate Code which simplifies probate, and so the process is typically complex. Due to the expenses and time consumed before your loved ones can inherit, we educate our clients on the ways by which probate can be avoided or minimized. Instead of using a will, we can help you execute trusts for your loved ones. Assets held in a trust would pass to the beneficiary immediately without having to go through probate. If only a few assets such as real property and some funds are left, then they can pass easily through a small estate proceeding.
We can also offer asset protection to our clients to remove assets from within the reach of creditors. A typical way of doing this is by creating an irrevocable trust in which you the Grantor are denied access until death, where after they pass to the named beneficiary completely tax-free. This is important if you realize your estate funds will not suffice to pay off all your estate debts and tax while leaving enough for your loved ones.
Another very crucial aspect of estate planning is planning for incapacity. Incapacity is a situation whereby an individual is no longer mentally or physically fit to manage their estate and make decisions independently. Some cognitive disorders may develop later in life due to age or accident, and it is important you prepare for such eventualities by appointing a trusted agent who would step in to make decisions for you when you become incapacitated. To this end, we help in establishing a:
Durable financial power of attorney — in which you authorize a trusted agent to make financial decisions on your behalf when you become unable to do so yourself;
Healthcare proxy/medical power of attorney — which allows you to authorize an agent to make healthcare decisions for you
Living will — by which you declare your healthcare preferences for end-of-life-situations.
Estate tax in New York can reach up to 16% of your net estate. That is a considerable sum which you would rather have passed to a loved one. But your estate is only subject to such taxes if it exceeds $5,850,000, when you pass away. If it does already, we can help you plan to reduce the value by gifting to your loved ones while you are alive or setting up trusts for them.
Our team of estate planning attorneys has your best interest at heart and would use every provision in the estate laws to your advantage. Contact us to speak with an experienced estate planning attorney in Glen Head, NY 11545.