Hiring a Queens estate planning lawyer from our law firm guarantees you an estate plan that covers your best interests. With so much to worry about such as making plans for your asset disposal and retirement, we ensure that even those things you haven’t thought of are duly planned for.
In Queens, there are core things to consider in your estate plan including tax, probate, and incapacity, among others. To ensure you get your estate plan right, contact an estate planning lawyer Queens NY at our law firm.
Estate planning considerations in Queens, NY
Complex estate situations
Drafting a will for asset transfer is one aspect of estate planning. You could write one yourself if you have a simple estate with a typical family (a spouse and children). However, you would need a more comprehensive plan and hence the assistance of an estate planning lawyer if you find your in any of the following situations:
- You are in a blended family and need assurance that your own kids from the previous marriage get a share in your inheritance when you pass away
- You have a child with special needs
- You have minors (children below 18 cannot inherit under New York laws)
- Incapacity can happen at anytime, and we need to plan for your care and asset management
- Your debts are heavy and would drain your estate significantly if they are to be paid
- You have a large estate that’s subject to huge estate taxes
- You wish to shield your assets from liens, nursing home costs, etc, while qualifying for Medicaid
- You have property in multiple states
- You have complexly owned assets and are unsure how they will pass on your death.
Incapacity is a situation where someone becomes legally regarded as unable to make reliable decisions for themselves. It may be due to old age, disability, or a disease like dementia.
By establishing a document known as power of attorney, an estate planning lawyer can help you appoint someone to manage your affairs when you become unable to manage them yourself. This person, your agent or attorney-in-fact, may make financial or healthcare decisions for you as you authorize in the document.
We advise creating a durable financial power of attorney and healthcare power of attorney now that you are competent. A durable power of attorney is one that does not become inactive due to incapacity. On the contrary, your agent can step into your shoe and manage your affairs any moment you become incapacitated. This avoids your estate from suffering huge blows if there’s no competent person authorized to step up immediately.
If there’s no incapacity plan in place, then your loved ones would have to seek guardianship over you when you become incapacitated, and this takes time and money.
An important aspect of estate planning is tax planning, and our estate planning lawyers Queens are proficient tax planners.
We evaluate your entire estate to determine if it falls below the tax exemption amount. Currently in 2021, an estate tax will be imposed on New York estates valuing over $5.93 million. So if your estate is more than this amount, part of it will be going to the state. But there are legal estate planning strategies, such as annual gifting and execution of irrevocable trusts, we can use to prevent this for you.
Probate is a problematic legal process that takes place when someone dies leaving estate. It is typically lengthy, costly, and time-consuming in Queens. But all of that depends on the nature of the estate passing through probate. The higher the value, the more complex probate tends to be. If that’s your case, you wouldn’t want your survivors to go through the stress before they can inherit your property.
Typically, all assets passed via a will will pass through probate. Depending on the complexity of your estate, a good estate planning lawyer will suggest handling your valuable assets in a living trust so that those passing through probate will be minimized (if all can’t go through the trust). All assets passed in a trust avoid probate.
Requirements for validity
State laws often change, and these laws determine the validity of your plan. It therefore requires someone deeply rooted in the estate laws of New York to ensure each document you prepare is always compliant with these ever-changing laws.
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