What’s at stake?
When a loved one passes away, many administrative and legal issues must be taken care of. Assuming the responsibilities that come with being the Executor of an estate—whether you are a family member or friend—can feel like walking into a mine field.
Having to fulfill seemingly countless legal and financial obligations can seem overwhelming, and can add a great deal of stress to an already difficult time.
We can help lift the burden from your shoulders. You can rely on the expertise and experience we’ve developed over years of representing estates of all sizes, from $300,000 to $15 million+.
Questions you are
or should be asking:
Can I handle the duties of being an executor by myself?
The answer to that question depends mostly on the size and complexity of the estate. If the estate in question is small, there are only a few beneficiaries, and/or the deceased did not own real estate or financial assets other than, say, a bank account, it may be possible for you to handle matters yourself without much difficulty.
However, even when it comes to handling a relatively small estate, you may feel you lack the knowledge, experience, and time to fulfill the obligations you have agreed to assume. Engaging an experienced Trusts and Estates attorney may save you and the estate both time and money in the long run, to say nothing of relieving your stress and protecting you from liability.
There are countless other questions that you will need answers to. Here are just a few:
What happens if my loved one died without having a Will?
What is probate and is it necessary?
What documents and financial details do I need to locate in order to begin administering the estate, or to give to a Trusts and Estates attorney?
Do I have to sell the house or can I just put all the heirs on the deed?
How do I deal with fighting heirs?
What happens when there are complications, such as debts, business problems, pending lawsuits, or divorce and remarriage?
When do I distribute the assets to the beneficiaries?
Do I need to file tax returns for the deceased or the estate?
How we can help you
Whether you are an executor, trustee and/or a beneficiary, we can answer your questions, act as your counsel, and help you with every aspect of the estate administration process.
We will be there every step of the way, helping you with:
- Probate of wills and all phases of Surrogate's Court practice;
- Administering estates in which there is no Will;
- Collecting and valuing assets, including dealing with banks, brokers and employers;
- Settling outstanding debts;
- Distributing assets to beneficiaries;
- Helping you deal with the heirs;
- Preparing fiduciary accountings;
- Preparing estate tax returns;
- Using post-mortem tax planning devices, including making various tax elections and allocations; and
- Representing you before the Internal Revenue Service and the New York state tax examiners in connection with audit examinations of estate and gift tax returns.