Mullen and Iannarone, P.C.
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Serving the legal needs of corporations, individuals and
families of Suffolk County since 1972

Estate Planning Archives

Strategies for transferring wealth to future generations

A parent in New York who is trying to decide how to divide their assets should have confidence in their ultimate decision. This is true regardless of what adult children or other family members may feel. Children are urged to not let the size of their inheritance act as a proxy for the size of their parent's love. Parents should talk with their children and others ahead of time to discuss how assets will be divided.

Including collectibles in an estate plan

When people in New York plan for the future of their family and their assets, they may be concerned about how best to pass on valuable collectible objects like artwork and memorabilia. These items are not the only types of personal property that may have a high financial value; they can also hold significant amount of sentimental value to their owners as well as to others in the family. In a study by Deloitte, over 80 percent of art collectors noted that they considered their collections to be a valuable investment. Just like other types of investments, estate plans need to take proper steps to deal with the distribution of artwork and collectibles.

What's missed in estate planning

Suffolk County residents are often encouraged to plan for emergencies or retirement, but planning for death isn't commonly discussed even if it is inevitable. Failing to plan can cause numerous legal troubles, financial burdens and discord in the event of a loved one's passing.

Estate planning can be critical for the future

When people in New York plan for the future for themselves and their families, estate planning can be a big part of the picture. However, only 4 out of every 10 Americans over the age of 60 have important documents in place to deal with their finances or healthcare decisions in case of incapacity. These kinds of documents can help to protect people from elder abuse, fraud and other types of negative outcomes. Across the country, 20 percent of Americans over 65 are financially abused; however, only 10 percent expect that it could happen to them.

Coming up with a trust solution

New York residents can use a trust to protect assets intended for future generations and as a form of tax management for those assets. However, it is important that the person they select to oversee the trust is able to properly carry out the duties the position entails.

Options to consider in estate planning

At one time, estate planning consisted of merely a last will and testament. For the very wealthy, it might have consisted of a trust. In modern times, estate planning can and should be much more than just preparing a will. New York residents should consider some of the options available.

Charitable giving and estate plans

New York residents can include provisions in their estate plan that allow part of their estate to be given to their favorite charities. Changes in federal laws regarding gift and estate taxes are likely to impact the manner in which charity is integrated into an individual's estate plan.

Why trusts may be better for leaving assets to children

New York residents and others may have qualms about leaving assets outright to a minor child. However, it may also be a good idea to leave assets meant for adult children in a trust. The primary reason to leave assets in a trust is that advanced age doesn't necessarily translate into advanced financial skill. As the value of an inheritance increases, it is critical that whoever oversees it has the type of financial skills necessary to manage it properly.

Avoiding the probate process

One of the major mistakes New York residents can make when devising their estate plans is not using a strategy that allows assets to bypass the probate process. Probate, which can be costly and slow, is a legal process through which assets must pass if they are transferred to beneficiaries via a will.

Handling estate planning

People in New York should consider an estate plan with the appropriate legal documents in place so that any financial or healthcare decisions made on their behalf are done according to their preferences. Having an estate plan is not only about planning for assets but also accounting for if an individual is incapacitated and unable to make decisions on their own.