Estate Planning and Elder Law Blog

Do You Need a Life Insurance Trust?

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (“ILIT”) is a valuable estate planning tool used to reduce estate taxes – known as death taxes during an election year. Whether you need an ILIT depends on how much your assets are worth now or what your potential net worth is in the future. Some benefits of an ILIT…

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Does an Executor Need to Hire an Attorney?

Whether an executor needs to hire an attorney depends on the type of assets, size of the estate, family dynamics, estate tax considerations, and outstanding bills. As a fiduciary, an executor can be held accountable for any gross negligence, waste or mismanagement of the estate.  Therefore, not only does serving as executor requires a significant…

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BIG changes for Medicaid in 2023

There is a BIG change on the horizon for asset and income limits for long term care Medicaid recipients. Community-Based Long Term Care Medicaid Starting January 1, 2023, there will be an increase in the allowable monthly income level, as follows:   2022 2023* Individual $934.00 $1,563.00 Couple $1,367.00 $2,106.00   Practical Note: The local…

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How to Collect on Life Insurance Proceeds

Most people do not realize that a Will likely does not control who collects on a life insurance policy. The beneficiary named on the policy supersedes the Will. So long as the policy owner correctly designated a beneficiary on the policy, that designation controls. If you are the primary beneficiary If you are the primary…

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Drama Free Ways to Disinherit a Child

In New York State, a parent has no obligation to leave an inheritance to a child. Many other countries have “forced heirship” which prohibits parents from disinheriting children, but Louisiana is the only US state with such a law. In New York, the only relative who cannot be disinherited is a surviving spouse. The surviving…

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We’ve Moved!

We’re on the move! We’re excited to announce that we have moved our East Hampton location to 126 North Main Street Suite #4, East Hampton 11937. We look forward to serving you with the same dedication and customer service that has become the hallmark of our practice!

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Should You Add Your Child as a Joint Account Owner?

There is a long running joke about lawyers never giving straight answers. We prefer to give clients definitive answers but when clients ask us whether to add a child as a joint account holder, we always say, “it depends.” Adding your child as a co-owner on your bank account can be positive or negative depending…

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Estate Planning for Singles

There is much discourse about estate planning for married couples, but what about seniors who are widowed or have never married? Single people often have more complicated estates – especially if they do not have close natural heir such as a spouse or child. Moreover, maintaining independence requires having Advance Directives in place to plan…

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How charitable giving fits into your estate plan

For the charitably inclined, there is always a question of how to be most efficiently leave money to charities in your estate plan. Charitable giving ranges from simple small monetary amounts to more complicated charitable trusts. No matter the option, there are potential income tax and estate tax implications to consider. Specific Bequests to Charities…

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Can I Sell My House with a Lien?

What is a lien? A lien is a legal claim against real property by a creditor of the property owner, recorded in the county clerk’s office. The lien remains on the property until the property owner pays off the debt.  An unpaid lien can lead to the legal right to seize and sell your real…

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