Estate Planning and Elder Law Blog

There are no Lady Birds in New York State

Ever since the concept of individual land ownership emerged, passing real estate at death has existed in one form or another. Different states have different property laws that directly affect how real property passes at death. Although named after “Lady Bird” Johnson, Lyndon B. Johnson never actually used such a deed to transfer property to…

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What is Portability?

The word is defined as “the ability to be easily moved,” but in the context of Trusts & Estates, it means much more. In this regard, portability is one of the strongest tools in the planner’s toolbox to reduce or eliminate federal estate taxes after the deaths of a married couple. Federal Estate Tax Exemption…

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Best Lawyers Recognition for Nancy Burner, Esq. and Britt Burner, Esq.

Congratulations are in order for Nancy Burner, Esq. and Britt Burner, Esq. Nancy, for the ninth consecutive year, has been recognized by Best Lawyers and her peers in the practice areas of Elder Law and Trusts and Estates. Nancy was also recognized as the Best Lawyers® 2023 “Lawyer of the Year” for Elder Law on…

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What is Surrogate’s Court in New York?

Surrogate’s Court hears cases involving the affairs of decedents, the probate of wills, and the administration of estates. The Surrogate’s Court also handles certain types of guardianship petitions and adoptions. Every county in the State of New York has a Surrogate’s Court. When a person dies with a Will (testate), the nominated executor must file…

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Estate Planning with Adult Children

Question: My spouse and I completed our estate planning with an attorney. In our planning, we left our legacy to our adult children. Should they have their own estate planning? Answer: Yes, they should have their own estate planning documents for several reasons. Each adult child should have their estate planning documents to dictate the…

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What steps should I take with my loved one’s estate and my own planning?

Whenever a loved one passes, especially one that was depended on, it is often difficult for one to even consider the next steps, yet alone know what those steps are. To start, there will be two professionals you’ll want to seek professional advice from. One is a Trust and Estates Attorney who can help review…

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How Often Should I Update My Financial & Legal Documents?

You should be checking on your accounts as often as you review your estate plan. In general, we recommend an estate plan review every three to five years. Any change in life circumstances or family, or changes in the law, will warrant a review of your plan as well. The proper titling of your accounts…

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What is a Small Estate Proceeding?

Not all estates require a probate or full administration proceeding in New York State. A small estate proceeding, also known as a Voluntary Administration, is a simplified Surrogate’s Court procedure. Voluntary Administration is available if the decedent died with or without a Will. What Estates Qualify for a Small Estate Proceeding? Under Article 13 of…

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 Medicare’s 100 Days Explained

Medicare never covers the full cost of a skilled nursing facility. Medicare does not always provide 100 days of rehabilitation, it will pay “up to” 100 days.  Medicare Part A covers the full cost of the first 20 days in a rehabilitation facility when a patient meets certain qualifications after a hospital stay. For days…

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What is a Medicaid Fair Hearing?

man holding documents at probate court

A Fair Hearing is how to challenge a determination made by a local social services agency (“Agency”). An Administrative Law Judge from the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Office (“OTDA”) precedes over the hearing. If successful, the hearing will result in a written decision directing the agency to “correct” the case….

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