In the painful and trying time after the death of a loved one, there is the arduous and drawn out struggle for the estate and valuables of the deceased parent.
Often, loved ones and grandchildren must come to terms with the last wishes of their parent. This then means finding the deceased parent’s final wishes and trying to find out what it means.
Sometimes the instructions provided for in the decedent’s will causes great pressures and strains on relationships among siblings and distant relatives to determine each person’s legal interest in the estate.
Below, you’ll find ways that New York wills and trust laws are created, and how they work at a basic level to help serve the interests of the beneficiaries of a parent who may have had a will.
I. Wills, Trusts, Elder and Estate Law Legal Issues Handled By Queens, Manhattan, Or New York State Wills and Trust Law Firms
According to O’Connell & Aronowitz, the purpose of creating a will is to leave instruction to the survivors for how an estate is to be managed.
Formally, this means that a maker of a testamentary will do the following:
- Appoint guardians of children and property,
- Address the payment method of debts and taxes; and
- Identify an estate executor.
The default rule in the absence of a will is to let property pass according to the judge’s discretion to the nearest blood-relatives of the deceased.
There is another distinct type of will that instructs how a maker of the will’s loved ones are to take care of them in their final years of incapacity through a living will’s including an advance directive.
Advance directives use healthcare proxies, or those appointed to make decisions on behalf of the mentally incapacitated person.
These instructions include information relating to:
- The use of artificial nutrition and hydration methods, such as feeding tubes and IV drips;
- The use of shock therapy;
- Body tissue donations;
- Organ tissue donations;
- The use of artificial breathing devices; and
- Surgical procedures.
- Medicaid planning.
Closely related, but different in major respects, New York revocable living trusts are ways of protecting property in a legal entity called a trust to be managed by someone trusted with good judgment to provide for another group intended to take the trust’s assets.
The benefits of an estate plan that includes a living trust are:
- Avoiding or minimizing probate, or court-intervention, delay and modifications.
- Control of assets after death.
- Prevention of waste by timing of when and how assets reach the beneficiaries.
Overall, confiding in a skilled and seasoned New York wills and trust lawyer gives you peace of mind in knowing that your property will pass to your loved ones, and avoid excessive interference by the courts and liens by collectors seeking to satisfy old debts.
II. Legal Advice And Estate Planning Tools From A Queens, Staten Island, Or Brooklyn Estate Planning Law Office To Pass Along Property With Peace of Mind
Often those who try to use self-help encounter a difficulty of a will that is not valid, creating doubt and uncertainty of how potentially hundreds if of dollars, if not millions, are distributed. The result is waste, assets seized by tax collectors and creditors, leaving family members and loved ones with even a lesser amount to quibble over in a time of serious reflection.
According to New York laws as explained by NYC-based Ettinger Law Firm, commonly elderly persons are left vulnerable as they age with fixed-incomes. To avoid having their income from public assistance programs seized causing them to be sent to a nursing home confined to a hospital bed, a savvy and knowledgeable New York estate structuring and estate planning lawyer can fashion creative solutions, including, but not limited to more specialized types of trusts such as:
- Medicaid Asset Protection Trust (MAPT’s)
- Inheritance trusts
- And many others…
These are examples of trusts which amateur estate plans tend to omit.
Find a resourceful Westchester county NYC law firm specializing in wills and trusts to fashion a solution taking advantage of all of the mechanisms in New York Probate law and estate planning precedents to secure your financial future, and prepare for the worst health situation.
III. Legal Advice: Value Of A New York City, Albany, Long Island, New York Power of Attorney, Wills and Trusts Lawyer In Handling The Probate Process
Many New York wills and trusts lawyers, such as the NYC-headquarted Mishiyeva Law, PLLC, and Syracuse-, Rochester- and Buffalo-based Friedman & Ranzenhofer, and NYC-based Katzner Law Group, often are trained at the best law schools in New York, or other states and around the country, provide exemplary legal services to get you through your legal crisis.
According to the legal blog of The Law Office of Albert Goodwin, the common problems with using self-help is making changes that won’t be enforced later on by a court. Such changes are called “codicils.” New York Estates, Powers & Trusts Law (EPTL) § 1-2.1
According to the blog of Ortiz & Ortiz, LLP, another way wills can fail is if the drafter does not have the following requirements for a will to be drafted in the first place:
- Be 18 years old;
- Be of sane mind knowing what the legal document’s effect is.
Traps for the unwary drafter without a lawyer’s aide will commonly result in problems later on down the road.
For instance, elderly testators and relatives denied a stake in the estate often perform will contests, or formal objections to the ability of the maker of the will to voluntarily make the will free of pressures from outside.
According to the New York State Bar’s legal blog, common ways to challenge a will are by arguing:
- Mental capacity: testator wasn’t of sound mind when will was made.
- Validity: never a signing and proper witnessing of the will.
- Undue influence: the will was written in a state of vulnerability someone exploited for private gain;
- Duress: extreme pressure forcing the will to be created.
- Fraud: lies about the truth of the testator’s property or terms.
New York wills and trusts lawyers can help you defend a will’s validity against unworthy challengers, and avoid those who the testator wanted to disinherit from taking from a share of the estate intended for other more deserving beneficiaries and loved ones.
IV. Speaking To A Suffolk County Or Manhattan Wills and Trusts Lawyer To Follow Testator’s Wishes
According to the attorney advertising on the blog of New York, New York Littman Krooks, LLP, a resourceful, well-staffed and experienced estate planning law firm in New York with many combined years of experience will provide tailored solutions based on your particular circumstances rather than general catch-all approaches relied upon through self-help.
According to Schlessel Law, PLLC, five kinds of wills are common to New Yorkers living in Nassau County seeking to pass along their legacy:
- Holographic wills
- Simple wills.
- Pour-over wills.
- Reciprocal wills.
- Noncupative wills.
Each kind has its particular purpose much in the way everything else in life has particular options that provide superior outcomes depending on the needs of the consumer.
For instance, simple wills are the by far most common form of will that simply informs who will look after the deceased’s children as a guardian, and who will get what property.
A common will may be a “pour-over will” that is a transfer of assets not mentioned in a trust from the will to the trust upon death.
Estate planning super lawyer firm Grimaldi Yeung, LLP is familiar with many wills and trust matters having many years of experience with more complex situations that arise which involve a fiduciary tasked with carrying out some instruction to help another group, usually close family members.
Avoid uncertain probate outcomes, costly land transfers through poor tax and estate planning, devaluation of estates and heirlooms ending up in the hands of the wrong people by finding the right respected and astute lawyer to tackle any complexity that is brought to their attention.
V. Forming an Attorney-Client Relationship: Call a Special Needs Trust And Estate Planning Lawyer Today for a Free Consultation and Free Evaluation
Once introduced, you and the New York wills and trusts firm will form a bond of trust and confidence known as the attorney-client relationship.
Unless where there is a disclaimer of not forming this formal relationship, you can look to your lawyer to be a zealous advocate offering practice areas that include estate administration and estate planning tools for the management of your life, present and future.
With directories spanning Brooklyn, Staten Island and Bronx-based wills and trusts lawyers, Lawsuit.org—beyond State Bar of New York association, or New York University state law library, or New York bar office—pinpoints the right firm to reduce estate tax liability, unwanted heirs and government forfeiture of land and valuables if you tried to handle wills and trust documents on your own.
Only by hiring a seasoned and worthy New York estate administration and estate planning attorney, or wills and trusts lawyer will you adequately manage estate planning legal issues after death and ensure that beneficiaries and their loved ones are provided for.