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Estate Planning Attorney NYC

Estate planning attorney in NYC Albert Goodwin is committed to helping seniors meet the challenges of getting older. As a senior, your income may have declined when you stopped working, but your medical and living expenses are soaring. You are gradually becoming more vulnerable and more dependent on others. Depending on the state of your health, you may need a home health aide or to be in a living facility. You are worried if you will have enough money to maintain your lifestyle and if there will be anything left for your family.

Estate planning attorney Albert Goodwin can help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family.

Every Senior Should Have a Will

If you don’t have a will, then the court will distribute your property according to NY’s intestacy laws. Your estate would still be divided only among your relatives, and the proportions of the distribution will most likely be different than what you would have wanted. You will lose the opportunity to leave out some of your relatives, and children may gain access to large sums of money upon turning 18.

Without a Valid Will Made by an Estate Planning Attorney, Your Family Would “Inherit” Attorneys’ Fees, Estate Taxes, Confusion and Feuds

If you leave behind a business, real estate, or financial papers which it would be a loss to sell at the current market conditions, the court might force your estate to sell such an asset. If you leave behind an asset that requires management, the court might direct your heirs to jointly manage the asset, without defining each heir’s role. Such co-ownership often results in feuding over money and control, which leads to years of litigation and tens of thousands of dollars spent on attorneys.

An estate planning attorney can help you make a will, letting you select who will serve as your executor (the person who handles your estate). You would choose someone that you trust, probably a relative and someone who is familiar with your property. Without a will, the family might disagree with whom the court should appoint as an executor, which may result in feuding and probate litigation.

Making a will is a good time for tax planning, saving your heirs tens of thousands of dollars in estate taxes. It is also a good time to calculate your estate tax liability and make sure that your estate has liquid assets to satisfy estate taxes. Otherwise, the probate court will force your heirs to sell a part of their inheritance to pay for estate taxes.

A Trust is the Best Tool an Estate Planning Attorney Can Use to Protect Your Assets

A trust can provide various important benefits to a senior – get Medicaid, protection from creditors, avoid probate, maintain privacy, avoid multiple-state legal proceedings, avoid interruption of income and use of assets, provide planning for mental disability, and save money on estate taxes, and many other benefits.

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Avoid probate. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. An Estate planning attorney in NYC can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Maintain privacy from creditors. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets. Trusts help avoid that problem, by providing an extra layer of privacy.
  • Avoid multiple-state probate proceedings. If you have property in multiple states, you can avoid ancillary probate proceedings by transferring your property into a trust. Upon your death, the property will pass according to the trust and multi-state Surrogate’s Court proceedings will not be required.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Management of funds for minor children or grandchildren. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Avoid interruption of income and use of assets. A trust provides for the continuity of management of your assets, and avoids interruption of income and use of assets upon your death or disability. Without a trust set up by an estate planning attorney in NYC, your estate or business may be subject to restrictions imposed by the probate court.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Save money on estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals.

A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or a Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) will help you maximize your tax advantage per charitable dollar. A Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRAT), an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT), or a Unitrust are advanced trusts that remove appreciation of your property from your estate. Read more in Advanced Estate Planning.

A revocable trust does not offer enough protection to be considered a good asset protection tool. The law considers assets in the revocable trust to belong to the person who placed the asset into the trust, so forming an irrevocable trust, although it has some benefits, will have no impact on asset protection. This is because revocable trust gives a lot of control to the person who established the trust. You can even revoke the trust, reversing it completely. For this reason, only an irrevocable trust works as a tool that an estate planning attorney would use in NY. However, an estate planning attorney NYC would still use revocable trusts for a number of situations. Revocable trusts are flexible because you can change or revoke them any time you like and for any reason. A revocable trust becomes irrevocable after the death of the person who made it, making it a flexible option but at the same time offering many of the trust benefits outlined above.

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) can be set up to own the life insurance policy, so that when the insured person dies, the proceeds of the life insurance will not become a part of the taxable estate. The insured can still pay the premiums by a “Crummy gift” to the trust. The downside of the trust is that the trust cannot be changed since it is irrevocable. The upside – no estate taxes (if set up the right way).

A Life Insurance Trust is also an important estate planning tool. It holds your life insurance for the benefit of your beneficiaries. After three years the trust would be deemed the owner of the policy, so as to minimize and chance that your estate will pay estate taxes on the proceeds. It also ensures that any appreciation of the life insurance policy is kept out of your estate. As a note of caution, a Life Insurance trust has to be carefully drafted by an experienced NY estate planning attorney to meet exacting IRS requirements.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give another person legal authority to act on behalf of the senior. A senior can select someone they trust, like their child, to be their “agent”. A revocable power of attorney makes sure that you can change your agent at any time.

If you do not have a power of attorney, your family might have no choice but to ask the court to appoint a guardian to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. This procedure can be expensive and time-consuming and may result in the court appointing someone that you might not have wanted to make financial decisions on your behalf.

Living Will

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Living Will, which determines what life-sustaining measures if any, you wish to be taken in case you will not be able to direct the doctors. For example, do you want to leave a do not resuscitate (DNR) instruction? Does your religion dictate a preference? What do you want to happen to your organs? These and many other issues are addressed by your estate planning attorney in your living will.

Health Proxy

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Health Proxy is a document that specifies the person that you would like to make health decisions for you when you are not able to do so yourself. A Health Care Proxy is a power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

If you need an estate planning attorney in NYC to help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family, call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

Estate Planning Lawyer NYC

estate planning lawyer NYC

Estate planning lawyer in NYC Albert Goodwin is committed to helping seniors meet the challenges of getting older. As a senior, your income may have declined when you stopped working, but your medical and living expenses are soaring. You are gradually becoming more vulnerable and more dependent on others. Depending on the state of your health, you may need a home health aide or to be in a living facility. You are worried if you will have enough money to maintain your lifestyle and if there will be anything left for your family.

Estate planning attorney Albert Goodwin can help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family.

Every Senior Should Have a Will

If you don’t have a will, then the court will distribute your property according to NY’s intestacy laws. Your estate would still be divided only among your relatives, and the proportions of the distribution will most likely be different than what you would have wanted. You will lose the opportunity to leave out some of your relatives, and children may gain access to large sums of money upon turning 18.

Without a Valid Will Made by an Estate Planning Attorney, Your Family Would “Inherit” Attorneys’ Fees, Estate Taxes, Confusion and Feuds

If you leave behind a business, real estate, or financial papers which it would be a loss to sell at the current market conditions, the court might force your estate to sell such an asset. If you leave behind an asset that requires management, the court might direct your heirs to jointly manage the asset, without defining each heir’s role. Such co-ownership often results in feuding over money and control, which leads to years of litigation and tens of thousands of dollars spent on lawyers.

An estate planning attorney can help you make a will, letting you select who will serve as your executor (the person who handles your estate). You would choose someone that you trust, probably a relative and someone who is familiar with your property. Without a will, the family might disagree with whom the court should appoint as an executor, which may result in feuding and probate litigation.

Making a will is a good time for tax planning, saving your heirs tens of thousands of dollars in estate taxes. It is also a good time to calculate your estate tax liability and make sure that your estate has liquid assets to satisfy estate taxes. Otherwise, the probate court will force your heirs to sell a part of their inheritance to pay for estate taxes.

A Trust is the Best Tool an Estate Planning Attorney Can Use to Protect Your Assets

A trust can provide various important benefits to a senior – get Medicaid, protection from creditors, avoid probate, maintain privacy, avoid multiple-state legal proceedings, avoid interruption of income and use of assets, provide planning for mental disability, and save money on estate taxes, and many other benefits.

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Avoid probate. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. An Estate planning lawyer in NYC can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Maintain privacy from creditors. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets. Trusts help avoid that problem, by providing an extra layer of privacy.
  • Avoid multiple-state probate proceedings. If you have property in multiple states, you can avoid ancillary probate proceedings by transferring your property into a trust. Upon your death, the property will pass according to the trust and multi-state Surrogate’s Court proceedings will not be required.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Management of funds for minor children or grandchildren. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Avoid interruption of income and use of assets. A trust provides for the continuity of management of your assets, and avoids interruption of income and use of assets upon your death or disability. Without a trust set up by an estate planning lawyer NYC, your estate or business may be subject to restrictions imposed by the probate court.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Save money on estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals.

A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or a Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) will help you maximize your tax advantage per charitable dollar. A Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRAT), an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT), or a Unitrust are advanced trusts that remove appreciation of your property from your estate. Read more in Advanced Estate Planning.

A revocable trust does not offer enough protection to be considered a good asset protection tool. The law considers assets in the revocable trust to belong to the person who placed the asset into the trust, so forming an irrevocable trust, although it has some benefits, will have no impact on asset protection. This is because revocable trust gives a lot of control to the person who established the trust. You can even revoke the trust, reversing it completely. For this reason, only an irrevocable trust works as a tool that an estate planning attorney would use in NY. However, an estate planning lawyer NYC would still use revocable trusts for a number of situations. Revocable trusts are flexible because you can change or revoke them any time you like and for any reason. A revocable trust becomes irrevocable after the death of the person who made it, making it a flexible option but at the same time offering many of the trust benefits outlined above.

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) can be set up to own the life insurance policy, so that when the insured person dies, the proceeds of the life insurance will not become a part of the taxable estate. The insured can still pay the premiums by a “Crummy gift” to the trust. The downside of the trust is that the trust cannot be changed since it is irrevocable. The upside – no estate taxes (if set up the right way).

A Life Insurance Trust is also an important estate planning tool. It holds your life insurance for the benefit of your beneficiaries. After three years the trust would be deemed the owner of the policy, so as to minimize and chance that your estate will pay estate taxes on the proceeds. It also ensures that any appreciation of the life insurance policy is kept out of your estate. As a note of caution, a Life Insurance trust has to be carefully drafted by an experienced NY estate planning attorney to meet exacting IRS requirements.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give another person legal authority to act on behalf of the senior. A senior can select someone they trust, like their child, to be their “agent”. A revocable power of attorney makes sure that you can change your agent at any time.

If you do not have a power of attorney, your family might have no choice but to ask the court to appoint a guardian to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. This procedure can be expensive and time-consuming and may result in the court appointing someone that you might not have wanted to make financial decisions on your behalf.

Living Will

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Living Will, which determines what life-sustaining measures if any, you wish to be taken in case you will not be able to direct the doctors. For example, do you want to leave a do not resuscitate (DNR) instruction? Does your religion dictate a preference? What do you want to happen to your organs? These and many other issues are addressed by your estate planning attorney in your living will.

Health Proxy

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Health Proxy is a document that specifies the person that you would like to make health decisions for you when you are not able to do so yourself. A Health Care Proxy is a power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

If you need an estate planning lawyer in NYC to help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family, call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

NY Estate Planning Attorney

NY estate planning attorney

NY estate planning attorney Albert Goodwin is committed to helping seniors meet the challenges of getting older. As a senior, your income may have declined when you stopped working, but your medical and living expenses are soaring. You are gradually becoming more vulnerable and more dependent on others. Depending on the state of your health, you may need a home health aide or to be in a living facility. You are worried if you will have enough money to maintain your lifestyle and if there will be anything left for your family.

Estate planning attorney Albert Goodwin can help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family.

Every Senior Should Have a Will

If you don’t have a will, then the court will distribute your property according to NY’s intestacy laws. Your estate would still be divided only among your relatives, and the proportions of the distribution will most likely be different than what you would have wanted. You will lose the opportunity to leave out some of your relatives, and children may gain access to large sums of money upon turning 18.

Without a Valid Will Made by an Estate Planning Attorney, Your Family Would “Inherit” Attorneys’ Fees, Estate Taxes, Confusion and Feuds

If you leave behind a business, real estate, or financial papers which it would be a loss to sell at the current market conditions, the court might force your estate to sell such an asset. If you leave behind an asset that requires management, the court might direct your heirs to jointly manage the asset, without defining each heir’s role. Such co-ownership often results in feuding over money and control, which leads to years of litigation and tens of thousands of dollars spent on lawyers.

An estate planning attorney can help you make a will, letting you select who will serve as your executor (the person who handles your estate). You would choose someone that you trust, probably a relative and someone who is familiar with your property. Without a will, the family might disagree with whom the court should appoint as an executor, which may result in feuding and probate litigation.

Making a will is a good time for tax planning, saving your heirs tens of thousands of dollars in estate taxes. It is also a good time to calculate your estate tax liability and make sure that your estate has liquid assets to satisfy estate taxes. Otherwise, the probate court will force your heirs to sell a part of their inheritance to pay for estate taxes.

A Trust is the Best Tool an Estate Planning Attorney Can Use to Protect Your Assets

A trust can provide various important benefits to a senior – get Medicaid, protection from creditors, avoid probate, maintain privacy, avoid multiple-state legal proceedings, avoid interruption of income and use of assets, provide planning for mental disability, and save money on estate taxes, and many other benefits.

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Avoid probate. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. A NY estate planning attorney can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Maintain privacy from creditors. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets. Trusts help avoid that problem, by providing an extra layer of privacy.
  • Avoid multiple-state probate proceedings. If you have property in multiple states, you can avoid ancillary probate proceedings by transferring your property into a trust. Upon your death, the property will pass according to the trust and multi-state Surrogate’s Court proceedings will not be required.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Management of funds for minor children or grandchildren. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Avoid interruption of income and use of assets. A trust provides for the continuity of management of your assets, and avoids interruption of income and use of assets upon your death or disability. Without a trust set up by a NY estate planning attorney, your estate or business may be subject to restrictions imposed by the probate court.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Save money on estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals.

A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or a Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) will help you maximize your tax advantage per charitable dollar. A Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRAT), an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT), or a Unitrust are advanced trusts that remove appreciation of your property from your estate. Read more in Advanced Estate Planning.

A revocable trust does not offer enough protection to be considered a good asset protection tool. The law considers assets in the revocable trust to belong to the person who placed the asset into the trust, so forming an irrevocable trust, although it has some benefits, will have no impact on asset protection. This is because revocable trust gives a lot of control to the person who established the trust. You can even revoke the trust, reversing it completely. For this reason, only an irrevocable trust works as a tool that an estate planning attorney would use in NY. However, a NY estate planning attorney would still use revocable trusts for a number of situations. Revocable trusts are flexible because you can change or revoke them any time you like and for any reason. A revocable trust becomes irrevocable after the death of the person who made it, making it a flexible option but at the same time offering many of the trust benefits outlined above.

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) can be set up to own the life insurance policy, so that when the insured person dies, the proceeds of the life insurance will not become a part of the taxable estate. The insured can still pay the premiums by a “Crummy gift” to the trust. The downside of the trust is that the trust cannot be changed since it is irrevocable. The upside – no estate taxes (if set up the right way).

A Life Insurance Trust is also an important estate planning tool. It holds your life insurance for the benefit of your beneficiaries. After three years the trust would be deemed the owner of the policy, so as to minimize and chance that your estate will pay estate taxes on the proceeds. It also ensures that any appreciation of the life insurance policy is kept out of your estate. As a note of caution, a Life Insurance trust has to be carefully drafted by an experienced NY estate planning attorney to meet exacting IRS requirements.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give another person legal authority to act on behalf of the senior. A senior can select someone they trust, like their child, to be their “agent”. A revocable power of attorney makes sure that you can change your agent at any time.

If you do not have a power of attorney, your family might have no choice but to ask the court to appoint a guardian to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. This procedure can be expensive and time-consuming and may result in the court appointing someone that you might not have wanted to make financial decisions on your behalf.

Living Will

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Living Will, which determines what life-sustaining measures if any, you wish to be taken in case you will not be able to direct the doctors. For example, do you want to leave a do not resuscitate (DNR) instruction? Does your religion dictate a preference? What do you want to happen to your organs? These and many other issues are addressed by your estate planning attorney in your living will.

Health Proxy

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Health Proxy is a document that specifies the person that you would like to make health decisions for you when you are not able to do so yourself. A Health Care Proxy is a power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

If you need a NY estate planning attorney to help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family, call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

New York Trust Attorney

New York trust attorney

A New York trust attorney can help protect you and your loved ones from losing your hard-earned assets to the government, attorneys, creditors and in-laws. You worked hard to get to where you are today, and it makes sense to reduce financial risk by protecting your assets with a trust. Here are some of the goals that a New York trust attorney may be able to accomplish for you:

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Avoid probate. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. A New York trust attorney can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Maintain privacy from creditors. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets. Not so with trusts.
  • Avoid multiple-state probate proceedings. If you have property in multiple states, you can avoid ancillary probate proceedings by transferring your property into a trust. Upon your death, the property will pass according to the trust and multi-state Surrogate’s Court proceedings will not be required.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Management of funds for minor children or grandchildren. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Avoid interruption of income and use of assets. A trust provides for the continuity of management of your assets, and avoids interruption of income and use of assets upon your death or disability. Without a trust set up by a New York trust attorney, your estate or business may be subject to restrictions imposed by the probate court.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Save money on estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals.

A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or a Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) will help you maximize your tax advantage per charitable dollar. A Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRAT), an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT), or a Unitrust are advanced trusts that remove appreciation of your property from your estate. Read more in Advanced Estate Planning.

A revocable trust does not offer enough protection to be considered a good asset protection tool. The law considers assets in the revocable trust to belong to the person who placed the asset into the trust, so forming an irrevocable trust, although it has some benefits, will have no impact on asset protection. This is because revocable trust gives a lot of control to the person who established the trust. You can even revoke the trust, reversing it completely. For this reason, only an irrevocable trust works as a tool that a trust attorney would use in New York. However, a New York trust attorney would still use revocable trusts for a number of situations. Revocable trusts are flexible because you can change or revoke them any time you like and for any reason. A revocable trust becomes irrevocable after the death of the person who made it, making it a flexible option but at the same time offering many of the trust benefits outlined above.

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) can be set up to own the life insurance policy, so that when the insured person dies, the proceeds of the life insurance will not become a part of the taxable estate. The insured can still pay the premiums by a “Crummy gift” to the trust. The downside of the trust is that the trust cannot be changed since it is irrevocable. The upside – no estate taxes (if set up the right way).

A Life Insurance Trust is also an important estate planning tool. It holds your life insurance for the benefit of your beneficiaries. After three years the trust would be deemed the owner of the policy, so as to minimize and chance that your estate will pay estate taxes on the proceeds. It also ensures that any appreciation of the life insurance policy is kept out of your estate. As a note of caution, a Life Insurance trust has to be carefully drafted by an experienced New York trust attorney to meet exacting IRS requirements.

Albert Goodwin was practicing as a trust attorney in New York since 2008. Since that time, he drafted over a hundred trusts, wills and other estate planning and elder law documents for his clients. He can be reached at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

New York Asset Protection Attorney

New York Asset Protection Attorney

A New York asset protection attorney can help you protect your assets from creditors and predators. You worked hard to get to where you are today, and it makes sense to reduce financial risk by protecting your assets from lawsuits, medical expenses, divorce and creditors. Consider a variety of situations where your assets can be exposed to risk:

  • Someone suing you for injury, accident or debt
  • Someone suing you for a task you performed as a part of your job
  • Someone suing you for a business obligation
  • Your spouse divorcing you, or you divorcing your spouse
  • Having to declare bankruptcy
  • Having to go to a long-term care facility
  • Having to incur medical expenses
  • Your children going through a divorce
  • Your children being sued or declaring bankruptcy

New York asset protection attorneys usually use trusts for personal asset protection and companies for business asset protection. We use established processes and well-accepted techniques to give the maximum possible protection to our clients’ assets under the law.

How A Trust Can Protect Your Assets

Irrevocable trusts (as opposed to revocable trusts) offer many asset protection benefits.

  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Protection from medical and long term care costs. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from probate costs and delays. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. It’s even more complicated if you have property in multiple states, because each state requires its own probate proceeding. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Privacy against casual creditor inquiries. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets, including potential creditors or predators. Not so with trusts, which are private.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Protect your minor children or grandchildren from mismanaged funds and hindering court oversight. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Protect your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Protection from the effects of your disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Protection of large estates from excessive estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals. A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or a Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) will help you maximize your tax advantage per charitable dollar. A Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRAT), an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT), or a Unitrust are advanced trusts that remove appreciation of your property from your estate. Read more in Advanced Estate Planning.

A revocable trust, on the other hand, does not offer enough protection to be considered a good asset protection tool. The law considers assets in the revocable trust to belong to the person who placed the asset into the trust, so forming an irrevocable trust, although it has some benefits, will have no impact on asset protection. This is because revocable trust gives a lot of control to the person who established the trust. You can even revoke the trust, reversing it completely. For this reason, only an irrevocable trust works as a tool that an asset protection attorney would use in New York.

How We Use Companies to Protect Business Assets

Asset protection attorneys use companies for business asset protection. The company can be a corporation, an LLC, or a professional association such as a PLLC. Doing business as a company provides a shield for an individual from business liability. A business asset protection plan is not fool-proof and can be in danger of being compromised. A business owner can make a mistake, such as not having all of the correct documents in the business folder or not filing the correct yearly documents with the state. A business owner can also take a calculated risk, like signing a personal guarantee on a business loan. You need a New York asset protection attorney to guide you through those decisions.

Insurance as an Asset Protection Tool

An insurance policy can be a powerful supplement to an asset protection plan and can be an asset protection tool in and of itself. An insurance company will likely not only pay for the claim against you but will also pay for an attorney to defend the claim. An asset protection attorney can help you sort through your options in deciding how best to incorporate insurance into your asset protection plan.

We Cannot Protect You Against an Existing Claim

People frequently call asset protection lawyers saying “there is a lawsuit against me, I am being sued, I need to protect my assets.” As a variation of this theme, people say “I know that a lawsuit is about to be filed against me, I’m about to be sued, I need to protect my assets before it’s too late.” The problem is, at that point, it’s already too late. An asset protection attorney can only protect your assets before a claim arises. In this respect, asset protection is like insurance – once the claim already happened, it’s too late to start. A court will typically overturn an asset transfer conducted in preparation for a specific claim.

A late asset protection plan can backfire. The court can require the unsuccessful “planner” to pay the judgment creditor’s attorney’s fees, and a bankruptcy court can deny them a bankruptcy discharge. An attorney involved in hiding assets from a pending lawsuit or bankruptcy can be disciplined for ethical violations. For this reason, asset protection attorneys stay away from helping their clients transfer assets when a claim already arose.

We Don’t Use Offshore Trusts

Offshore trusts are not effective because you are not offshore. A judge can order you to bring the money back to the United States, under threat of criminal contempt of court. Judges have the power to hold a person in jail until they bring their assets back to the United States. For this reason, most New York estate planning attorneys don’t use offshore trusts.

Asset Protection as a Hedge Against Bankruptcy

While bankruptcy can be a powerful tool to start fresh, it’s still best to avoid it. A modern bankruptcy proceeding has the effect of transferring most of your assets to your creditors. Having an asset protection attorney create a trust or a corporation for you before you are faced with having to declare bankruptcy is the best way to make sure that your assets are protected for your loved ones and your family. As we’ve discussed earlier, transferring your assets out of your name in contemplation of bankruptcy is a fraudulent transfer and can be set aside by the bankruptcy judge.

When it Comes to Asset Protection, Simple is Best

When it comes to asset protection plans, it’s best to keep it simple, with a trust or a corporation. A complicated web of transfers looks suspicious and will set off alarm bells in the judge’s head. As a rule of thumb, you should be able to explain why you created the asset protection plan. There are legitimate reasons for making a trust or a company, as we’ve discussed above. Making things more complicated usually does not help and can make an asset protection plan less effective.

Asset Protection is Not About Hiding Assets

If your goal is to hide assets from your creditors or the government, then asset protection is not for you. Asset protection is a 100% legal proactive way to manage risk. A New York asset protection attorney will not help you hide assets. What we do is help you form legal entities that you will disclose if asked in a deposition, by a judge or by a bankruptcy trustee, and will disclose on lawsuit information responses, bankruptcy petition and government assistance forms. Assets do not have to be hidden to be protected.

Situations that a New York Asset Protection Attorney can Protect Against

There is a seemingly limitless number of situations that a New York asset protection attorney can protect against. We have discussed the major ones above. A few more come to mind:

  • a medical malpractice lawsuit against a doctor (especially obstetrician)
  • a professional malpractice lawsuit against an attorney, architect or any other professional
  • a car accident
  • a slip and fall on your property
  • a copyright infringement claim
  • a lawsuit by a customer or a guest of your business
  • a lawsuit by a shareholder of your company or your business partner
  • a debt lawsuit by a bank or credit card company
  • a dog bite lawsuit
  • sexual or physical assault allegations
  • medical debt and Medicaid for nursing home or medical costs
  • any type of negligence lawsuit

A New York asset protection attorney can utilize powerful tools to protect your assets. The best time to start planning is now, if it’s not already too late. We will not be able to protect your from an existing claim, and hiding assets will not help either. You need an asset protection plan ahead of time. Call now and speak with a New York asset protection attorney. You can call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

New York Estate Planning Attorney

New York estate planning attorney

New York estate planning attorney Albert Goodwin is committed to helping seniors meet the challenges of getting older. As a senior, your income may have declined when you stopped working, but your medical and living expenses are soaring. You are gradually becoming more vulnerable and more dependent on others. Depending on the state of your health, you may need a home health aide or to be in a living facility. You are worried if you will have enough money to maintain your lifestyle and if there will be anything left for your family. 

Estate planning attorney Albert Goodwin can help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family.

Every Senior Should Have a Will

If you don’t have a will, then the court will distribute your property according to New York’s intestacy laws. Your estate would still be divided only among your relatives, and the proportions of the distribution will most likely be different than what you would have wanted. You will lose the opportunity to leave out some of your relatives, and children may gain access to large sums of money upon turning 18.

Without a Valid Will Made by an Estate Planning Attorney, Your Family Would “Inherit” Attorneys’ Fees, Estate Taxes, Confusion and Feuds

If you leave behind a business, real estate, or financial papers which it would be a loss to sell at the current market conditions, the court might force your estate to sell such an asset. If you leave behind an asset that requires management, the court might direct your heirs to jointly manage the asset, without defining each heir’s role. Such co-ownership often results in feuding over money and control, which leads to years of litigation and tens of thousands of dollars spent on lawyers.

An estate planning attorney can help you make a will, letting you select who will serve as your executor (the person who handles your estate). You would choose someone that you trust, probably a relative and someone who is familiar with your property. Without a will, the family might disagree with whom the court should appoint as an executor, which may result in feuding and probate litigation.

Making a will is a good time for tax planning, saving your heirs tens of thousands of dollars in estate taxes. It is also a good time to calculate your estate tax liability and make sure that your estate has liquid assets to satisfy estate taxes. Otherwise, the probate court will force your heirs to sell a part of their inheritance to pay for estate taxes.

A Trust is the Best Tool an Estate Planning Attorney Can Use to Protect Your Assets

A trust can provide various important benefits to a senior – get Medicaid, protection from creditors, avoid probate, maintain privacy, avoid multiple-state legal proceedings, avoid interruption of income and use of assets, provide planning for mental disability, and save money on estate taxes, and many other benefits.

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Avoid probate. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. A New York estate planning attorney can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Maintain privacy from creditors. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets. Trusts help avoid that problem, by providing an extra layer of privacy.
  • Avoid multiple-state probate proceedings. If you have property in multiple states, you can avoid ancillary probate proceedings by transferring your property into a trust. Upon your death, the property will pass according to the trust and multi-state Surrogate’s Court proceedings will not be required.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Management of funds for minor children or grandchildren. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Avoid interruption of income and use of assets. A trust provides for the continuity of management of your assets, and avoids interruption of income and use of assets upon your death or disability. Without a trust set up by a New York estate planning attorney, your estate or business may be subject to restrictions imposed by the probate court.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Save money on estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals.

A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or a Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) will help you maximize your tax advantage per charitable dollar. A Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRAT), an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT), or a Unitrust are advanced trusts that remove appreciation of your property from your estate. Read more in Advanced Estate Planning.

A revocable trust does not offer enough protection to be considered a good asset protection tool. The law considers assets in the revocable trust to belong to the person who placed the asset into the trust, so forming an irrevocable trust, although it has some benefits, will have no impact on asset protection. This is because revocable trust gives a lot of control to the person who established the trust. You can even revoke the trust, reversing it completely. For this reason, only an irrevocable trust works as a tool that an estate planning attorney would use in New York. However, a New York estate planning attorney would still use revocable trusts for a number of situations. Revocable trusts are flexible because you can change or revoke them any time you like and for any reason. A revocable trust becomes irrevocable after the death of the person who made it, making it a flexible option but at the same time offering many of the trust benefits outlined above.

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) can be set up to own the life insurance policy, so that when the insured person dies, the proceeds of the life insurance will not become a part of the taxable estate. The insured can still pay the premiums by a “Crummy gift” to the trust. The downside of the trust is that the trust cannot be changed since it is irrevocable. The upside – no estate taxes (if set up the right way).

A Life Insurance Trust is also an important estate planning tool. It holds your life insurance for the benefit of your beneficiaries. After three years the trust would be deemed the owner of the policy, so as to minimize and chance that your estate will pay estate taxes on the proceeds. It also ensures that any appreciation of the life insurance policy is kept out of your estate. As a note of caution, a Life Insurance trust has to be carefully drafted by an experienced New York estate planning attorney to meet exacting IRS requirements.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give another person legal authority to act on behalf of the senior. A senior can select someone they trust, like their child, to be their “agent”. A revocable power of attorney makes sure that you can change your agent at any time.

If you do not have a power of attorney, your family might have no choice but to ask the court to appoint a guardian to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. This procedure can be expensive and time-consuming and may result in the court appointing someone that you might not have wanted to make financial decisions on your behalf.

Living Will

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Living Will, which determines what life-sustaining measures if any, you wish to be taken in case you will not be able to direct the doctors. For example, do you want to leave a do not resuscitate (DNR) instruction? Does your religion dictate a preference? What do you want to happen to your organs? These and many other issues are addressed by your estate planning attorney in your living will.

Health Proxy

An estate planning attorney will prepare a Health Proxy is a document that specifies the person that you would like to make health decisions for you when you are not able to do so yourself. A Health Care Proxy is a power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

If you need a New York estate planning attorney to help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family, call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

New York Elder Care Attorney

elder care attorney new york

Elder care attorney Albert Goodwin is committed to helping seniors meet the challenges of getting older. As a senior, your income may have declined when you stopped working, but your medical and living expenses are soaring. You are gradually becoming more vulnerable and more dependent on others. Depending on the state of your health, you may need a home health aide or to be in a living facility. You are worried if you will have enough money to maintain your lifestyle and if there will be anything left for your family. You are worried about losing your house and retirement assets to pay for your healthcare and long-term care.

You need legal documents that can protect you from medical expenses and losing control of your life. You may even need a guardianship to protect you from abuse.

Elder care attorney Albert Goodwin can help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family.

Documents to Help Seniors Not Lose Control of Their Life When They Become Disabled

An elder care attorney can prepare documents that help seniors what happens in the event you are not well enough to make your own decisions. A Power of Attorney allows you to appoint a person to manage your financial affairs, a Health Care Proxy allows you to appoint a person to make medical decisions for you and a Living Will makes known your wishes regarding life-prolonging medical treatments.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give another person legal authority to act on behalf of the senior. A senior can select someone they trust, like their child, to be their “agent”. A revocable power of attorney makes sure that you can change your agent at any time.

If you do not have a power of attorney, your family might have no choice but to ask the court to appoint a guardian to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. This procedure can be expensive and time-consuming and may result in the court appointing someone that you might not have wanted to make financial decisions on your behalf.

Living Will

An elder care attorney will prepare a Living Will, which determines what life-sustaining measures if any, you wish to be taken in case you will not be able to direct the doctors. For example, do you want to leave a do not resuscitate (DNR) instruction? Does your religion dictate a preference? What do you want to happen to your organs? These and many other issues are addressed by your elder care attorney in your living will.

Health Proxy

An elder care attorney will prepare a Health Proxy is a document that specifies the person that you would like to make health decisions for you when you are not able to do so yourself. A Health Care Proxy is a power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

A Trust to Shield Your Assets from Creditors and Predators and Get Medicaid to Protect Your Family from Long-Term Care Costs

An elder care attorney can make a trust that can provide various important benefits to a senior. It can help you get Medicaid and plan for long-term care, as well as provide planning for mental disability.

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. A New York elder care attorney can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.

A Guardianship to Protect Seniors from Financial Abuse

It is an unfortunate reality that there are some relatives in New York who will use their relationship with an elderly person to their own gain. While elder abuse can take many forms, financial abuse can be one way that a trusted loved one of an elderly person can happen without them even realizing that it is going on. If you believe that you have an elderly loved one that is the subject of financial abuse, the first call you should make is to a New York elder care attorney with experience in dealing with elder abuse and guardianship.

Often, financial abuse is not as obvious to family members as physical abuse. Financial abuse is still a serious matter, however, and there are clues to look for to see if it is happening to your loved one. If the elderly person in your life has handed over control of his or her financial care to a family member in the form of a power of attorney, for example, there could be some major red flags to look for to see if there is financial abuse going on. One thing to look for is whether or not your loved one is still receiving the bank statements and know what is going on with his or her account. If it appears that you loved one does not know what is going on, while at the same time money or valuables are starting to go missing, it is time to take action.

The surest way to fight financial abuse is to petition to be your loved one’s guardian. While no one wants to think about their mother, father or other loved one not being able to make decisions for themselves, this can be the best way to secure that loved one’s finances. Becoming a guardian is the best way to stop someone who is taking advantage of a loved one financially, even if they are using a power of attorney.

Through petitioning for guardianship with the assistance of a New York elder care attorney, you can help your parent gain control over his or her money. The first step is to have an emergency guardian appointed so that accounts can be frozen. This will keep your brother or sister from gaining access to your loved one’s money while the guardianship proceedings are going on. Once a guardian is appointed, the accounts can be under the guardian’s control, meaning that it would not be possible for a financial abuser to take any more money. You can also petition for a full accounting if the suspected abuser has been given power of attorney over your relative. This way, there is a better chance that you will find out where your loved one stands financially.

If you need an elder care attorney to help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family, call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

New York Elder Law Attorney

elder law attorney new york

Elder law attorney Albert Goodwin is committed to helping seniors meet the challenges of getting older. As a senior, your income may have declined when you stopped working, but your medical and living expenses are soaring.  You are gradually becoming more vulnerable and more dependent on others. Depending on the state of your health, you may need a home health aide or to be in a living facility. You are worried if you will have enough money to maintain your lifestyle and if there will be anything left for your family. You are worried about losing your house and retirement assets to pay for your healthcare and long-term care.  

You need legal documents that can protect you from medical expenses and losing control of your life. You need to have estate plan to preserve your hard-earned assets for the next generation. You may even need a guardianship to protect you from abuse.

Elder law attorney Albert Goodwin can help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family.  

Documents to Help Seniors Not Lose Control of Their Life When They Become Disabled

An elder law attorney can prepare documents that help seniors what happens in the event you are not well enough to make your own decisions. A Power of Attorney allows you to appoint a person to manage your financial affairs, a Health Care Proxy allows you to appoint a person to make medical decisions for you and a Living Will makes known your wishes regarding life-prolonging medical treatments.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give another person legal authority to act on behalf of the senior. A senior can select someone they trust, like their child, to be their “agent”. A revocable power of attorney makes sure that you can change your agent at any time.

If you do not have a power of attorney, your family might have no choice but to ask the court to appoint a guardian to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. This procedure can be expensive and time-consuming and may result in the court appointing someone that you might not have wanted to make financial decisions on your behalf.

Living Will

An elder law attorney will prepare a Living Will, which determines what life-sustaining measures if any, you wish to be taken in case you will not be able to direct the doctors. For example, do you want to leave a do not resuscitate (DNR) instruction? Does your religion dictate a preference? What do you want to happen to your organs? These and many other issues are addressed by your elder law attorney in your living will.

Health Proxy

An elder law attorney will prepare a Health Proxy is a document that specifies the person that you would like to make health decisions for you when you are not able to do so yourself. A Health Care Proxy is a power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

Every Senior Should Have a Will

If you don’t have a will, then the court will distribute your property according to New York’s intestacy laws. Your estate would still be divided only among your relatives, and the proportions of the distribution will most likely be different than what you would have wanted. You will lose the opportunity to leave out some of your relatives, and children may gain access to large sums of money upon turning 18.

Without a Valid Will Made by an Elder Law Attorney, Your Family Would “Inherit” Attorneys’ Fees, Estate Taxes, Confusion and Feuds

If you leave behind a business, real estate, or financial papers which it would be a loss to sell at the current market conditions, the court might force your estate to sell such an asset. If you leave behind an asset that requires management, the court might direct your heirs to jointly manage the asset, without defining each heir’s role. Such co-ownership often results in feuding over money and control, which leads to years of litigation and tens of thousands of dollars spent on lawyers.

An elder law attorney can help you make a will, letting you select who will serve as your executor (the person who handles your estate). You would choose someone that you trust, probably a relative and someone who is familiar with your property. Without a will, the family might disagree with whom the court should appoint as an executor, which may result in feuding and probate litigation.

Making a will is a good time for tax planning, saving your heirs tens of thousands of dollars in estate taxes. It is also a good time to calculate your estate tax liability and make sure that your estate has liquid assets to satisfy estate taxes. Otherwise, the probate court will force your heirs to sell a part of their inheritance to pay for estate taxes.

A Trust to Shield Your Assets from Creditors and Predators and Get Medicaid to Protect Your Family from Long-Term Care Costs

An elder law attorney can make a trust that can provide various important benefits to a senior –  get Medicaid, avoid probate, maintain privacy, avoid multiple-state legal proceedings, avoid interruption of income and use of assets, provide planning for mental disability, and save money on estate taxes.

  • Qualify for Medicaid. There are several types of trust that can help some individuals qualify for Medicaid, including home care and nursing home coverage. This helps you avoid spending your hard-earned assets on medical care and long term care, leaving those assets to your family. Learn more about Medicaid trusts.
  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits. A properly executed and funded irrevocable trust will shield the principal of the trust from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Avoid probate. Probate proceedings can become expensive and delayed. Property that you will transfer to a trust will not have to go through probate.
  • Protection from your children’s spouses and creditors. You may not want any of your hard-earned assets to go to your child’s spouse, whether in divorce or as an inheritance. You do not want any of the assets you give to your child to go to your child’s creditors, whether as a result of a lawsuit or in bankruptcy. A New York elder law attorney can make sure that your hard-earned assets remain in the blood family and not be preyed on by people who are not immediately related to you.
  • Maintain privacy from creditors. Proceedings in probate court are public record. Any person or organization will be able to find out the extent and location of your assets. Not so with trusts.
  • Avoid multiple-state probate proceedings. If you have property in multiple states, you can avoid ancillary probate proceedings by transferring your property into a trust. Upon your death, the property will pass according to the trust and multi-state Surrogate’s Court proceedings will not be required.
  • Protection from irresponsible and inexperienced children. A trust provides limits on how your beneficiaries can spend the assets. For example, you can specify amounts upon reaching a specified age.
  • Management of funds for minor children or grandchildren. Minor children or grandchildren cannot manage funds and they will need a trustee to manage the funds for them. If children inherit funds without a trust, the children’s parent or guardian will not be able to access the funds without a lengthy court proceeding and tremendous court oversight, we are talking about having the court endorse every check and having to file multiple reports each year.
  • Avoid interruption of income and use of assets. A trust provides for the continuity of management of your assets, and avoids interruption of income and use of assets upon your death or disability. Without a trust set up by a New York elder law attorney, your estate or business may be subject to restrictions imposed by the probate court.
  • Provide planning for mental disability. A trust lets you select a trustee – someone you trust to manage your estate on your behalf in the event you become unable to do so yourself. Read more in Planning for Disability.
  • Preserve your loved ones’ right to qualify for Medicaid and SSI – if your loved one is disabled and is on means-tested government programs such as Medicaid or SSI, a Special Needs Trust (also known as Supplemental Needs Trust) can help preserve their eligibility. They can continue to qualify to have the government pay for their care, instead of using your hard-earned assets.
  • Save money on estate taxes. Trusts can help you legally save a substantial amount on estate taxes. Read How to Avoid Estate Taxes to learn more about the credit shelter trust the life insurance trust. A “QTIP” trust or a QDT trust for the benefit of your spouse can further your tax savings goals.

A Guardianship to Protect Seniors from Financial Abuse

It is an unfortunate reality that there are some relatives in New York who will use their relationship with an elderly person to their own gain.  While elder abuse can take many forms, financial abuse can be one way that a trusted loved one of an elderly person can happen without them even realizing that it is going on.  If you believe that you have an elderly loved one that is the subject of financial abuse, the first call you should make is to a New York elder law attorney with experience in dealing with elder abuse and guardianship.

Often, financial abuse is not as obvious to family members as physical abuse.  Financial abuse is still a serious matter, however, and there are clues to look for to see if it is happening to your loved one.  If the elderly person in your life has handed over control of his or her financial care to a family member in the form of a power of attorney, for example, there could be some major red flags to look for to see if there is financial abuse going on.  One thing to look for is whether or not your loved one is still receiving the bank statements and know what is going on with his or her account.  If it appears that you loved one does not know what is going on, while at the same time money or valuables are starting to go missing, it is time to take action.

The surest way to fight financial abuse is to petition to be your loved one’s guardian.  While no one wants to think about their mother, father or other loved one not being able to make decisions for themselves, this can be the best way to secure that loved one’s finances.  Becoming a guardian is the best way to stop someone who is taking advantage of a loved one financially, even if they are using a power of attorney.

Through petitioning for guardianship with the assistance of a New York elder law attorney, you can help your parent gain control over his or her money.  The first step is to have an emergency guardian appointed so that accounts can be frozen.  This will keep your brother or sister from gaining access to your loved one’s money while the guardianship proceedings are going on.  Once a guardian is appointed, the accounts can be under the guardian’s control, meaning that it would not be possible for a financial abuser to take any more money.  You can also petition for a full accounting if the suspected abuser has been given power of attorney over your relative.  This way, there is a better chance that you will find out where your loved one stands financially.

If you need an elder law attorney to help you maintain a comfortable lifestyle while preserving your wealth for the next generation of your family, call Albert Goodwin at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

What is the Price of a Will in NYC?

What is the Price of a Will in NYC?

What is the price of a will NYC? Typically, about $1,200. The price will be higher if one of the following is a factor:

  • a large estate
  • a testamentary trust built into the will
  • complicated arrangements, such as having multiple people receive property or cash bequests
  • disinheriting children, spouse or other relatives
  • travel to the client’s location
  • urgency

In a large estate, the price will be higher because there are more strategies that the estate attorney needs to utilize in order to protect the estate from issues that may come up. A testamentary trust involves more work than a will, it’s essentially a new document built into the will, in which case trust pricing would apply. If a will involves a complicated arrangement, then the estate attorney will need to spend hours, and sometimes tens of hours more on figuring out what the arrangement is and writing it down, as well as having the client change their mind about the arrangement and reassign which people have which property and how much of it. If someone is disinheriting a child, spouse or other relatives, the attorney has to spend much more time documenting the will as the attorney will possibly need to testify about the will to the court and in depositions. The attorney will also have to develop defensive strategies, such as deciding whether or not to record the will execution on video. If the attorney needs to travel to the client’s location, the attorney will raise the price of the will. Urgency contributes to the price of the will in NYC as well, as the estate attorney will have to work overtime to complete the will as well as to catch up on other projects that get pushed back as a result.

If you would like an estimate the price of your will, you can give me a call at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.

What is the Price of a Will in NY?

What is the Price of a Will in NY?

What is the price of a will NY? Typically, about $1,200. The price will be higher if one of the following is a factor:

  • a large estate
  • a testamentary trust built into the will
  • complicated arrangements, such as having multiple people receive property or cash bequests
  • disinheriting children, spouse or other relatives
  • travel to the client’s location
  • urgency

In a large estate, the price will be higher because there are more strategies that the estate attorney needs to utilize in order to protect the estate from issues that may come up. A testamentary trust involves more work than a will, it’s essentially a new document built into the will, in which case trust pricing would apply. If a will involves a complicated arrangement, then the estate attorney will need to spend hours, and sometimes tens of hours more on figuring out what the arrangement is and writing it down, as well as having the client change their mind about the arrangement and reassign which people have which property and how much of it. If someone is disinheriting a child, spouse or other relatives, the attorney has to spend much more time documenting the will as the attorney will possibly need to testify about the will to the court and in depositions. The attorney will also have to develop defensive strategies, such as deciding whether or not to record the will execution on video. If the attorney needs to travel to the client’s location, the attorney will raise the price of the will. Urgency contributes to the price of the will in NY as well, as the estate attorney will have to work overtime to complete the will as well as to catch up on other projects that get pushed back as a result.

If you would like an estimate the price of your will, you can give me a call at (212) 233-1233 or (718) 509-9774.