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estate administration & probate Archives

When estate planning, consider the various helping roles

When getting final affairs in order, New York residents will need to appoint various people to different roles. Whether these individuals will carry out duties before a person's death or after, it is important that parties considering their appointments understand the different positions they may come across while estate planning. No one wants to give just anyone a great deal of responsibility, so knowing what certain roles entail may help with decision making.

Not all assets go through the probate process

After a loved one's death, it is common for surviving family to have concerns over what will happen to the decedent's assets. Hopefully, the person will have created an estate plan that gives at least some guidance on property distribution and other important information. It may also help surviving loved ones to understand probate and how assets are distributed.

Estate planning can go beyond addressing assets

When undertaking any type of endeavor, it is important to have the right information. This factor is especially important for New York residents looking to get their end-of-life affairs in order. A lack of proper knowledge when it comes to estate planning could leave room for individuals to have planning mistakes or no plan at all.

How to tell if your loved ones will fight over your estate

Most people who create their estate plans do so with the thought that siblings or other loved ones will come together and share in the gifts and assets that were left behind. Such optimism is noble, but it does not always work out this way. While siblings and competing loved ones may appear to have love and compassion for one another, things may change quickly after a matriarch or patriarch passes away.

Common legal grounds for will contests

Estate planning is an exercise to ensure that our personal property is distributed to our heirs and beneficiaries in the way we see fit. For a myriad of reasons, this may be difficult for those choosing to leave property and assets to loved ones. At the same time, beneficiaries may have vastly different ideas about what they should be entitled to even though a will may have been drafted.

Can insurance policies be lost?

As estate administration attorneys, it is very interesting to see what family members learn about someone after they pass away. Perhaps there are long-standing, clandestine relationships or personal achievements the deceased was too humble to share. Regardless of the family secrets that come out when a loved one passes away, insurance information should not be one of them.

Three tips for protecting digital assets

Estate planning in 2016 is not like how other generations planned how their assets would be distributed when they passed away. Indeed, people still establish wills and different forms of trusts, but with so many people having digital assets (i.e. email accounts, social media data and electronically stored information) it is important to know what to do with these assets when a person passes away.

Another confusing tax form for executors

With tax season in full swing, it is not just tax payers who are concerned about filing taxes. The confusion over how to complete tax forms may not go away for executors tasked with administering an estate. Obscure and dense tax forms can be vexing; especially for those who do not regularly deal with them.

What can happen to your debts after you pass away

If there are two things that remain constant through generations, they are the certainties of debt and death. Everyone has debt at some point in their lives, and everyone has an end to their life. Those who are up in age may be concerned about the amount of debt they have and whether they can pay it off before leaving this life. Additionally, they don’t want to be a financial burden on their families and don’t have the mental health or emotional stamina to deal with creditors.

Are video wills valid in New York?

Cameras on smartphones arguably changed the world. As a new form of communication, we can send an infinite number of pictures to show what we mean beyond the spoken word. We can also take and send videos of fun, tragic and even intimate moments. We can also record events that have particular legal significance.

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