TRUSTS AND ESTATES
At the Law Office of Anthony Nigro we focus on estate matters throughout the state of New York including the following counties: Westchester County, Bronx County, New York County (Manhattan), Queens County, Kings County, Rockland County and Orange County;
For an individual consultation please call (914) 595-6527 and set up an appointment to come in and talk. There is usually no initial consultation fee, unless stated up front. We are conveniently located in Valhalla, NY and have offices to meet in each of the respective counties we practice in.
It is our job to understand your goals before getting involved in any litigation and help you weigh the positives with the negatives. Contested estate matters are usually lengthy and emotionally draining and we do our best to provide you with the legal zeal and emotional support when you need it. We consider taking cases on contingent fee basis and pride ourselves in having most of our estate litigation cases come in from referrals. It is very easy to feel overwhelmed when it comes to a contested estate matter and we are here to help you through that difficult time. Matters include:
- Will Contests and 1404 depositions
- Contested Fiduciary Appointments
- Contested Accountings
- SCPA § 2103 Turnover Proceedings
- Parent Disqualification
- Spousal Disqualification
- Breach of Fiduciary Duty
- Contested Powers of Attorney
- Fraudulent Conveyances/Transfers
- Real Estate Partition Actions
- Will/Trust Construction
- Trust Litigation
- All other Probate and Administration Litigation
Administering an estate is no easy affair and can be troubling for any executor. When there is a will we have probated estates in all counties of New York City and the surrounding counties including Westchester County, Rockland County, Orange County and Putnam County. When there is not a will, we have done the same through the process of administration. Although the probate process is typically slower than most people would like, we do our best to push each petition as quickly as possible so that each family can move on with their lives.
Probate’s legal definition is “the act or process of proving a will” stemming from the Latin verb probare: to test, prove, examine. Add a conservative nine months of petitions, affidavits, appointment of a fiduciary, a marshaling of the assets, and an accounting and that “test” is complete. The petitioner, usually the executor, must prove to the Surrogate’s Court that the presented will was in fact the will of the decedent and after proving the will is valid, must follow all the statutory conditions in order to distribute the estate. When no will is presented, then a similar petition is followed except the decedent has no explicit wishes and the estate passes by intestacy, more specifically, EPTL § 4-1.1.
A simple way to think about probate is that it is New York State’s way of making sure that the decedent’s wishes are fairly followed. Although somewhat lengthy and convoluted at times, the probate process will make sure all of the decedent’s debts and expenses are paid and will ensure that the named beneficiaries in the will actually receive the funds. It also allows for any possible contested issues to be presented to the court. Remember that probate takes at a minimum 9 months to a year, with no hiccups or court delays.
With the advent of the fiscal cliff in New York and the hopeful ongoing changes to the estate tax imposed by the New York Legislature, estate planning has never been more important. Everyone’s situation is different, so estate planning can be as straight forward as a Last Will and Testament, Power of Attorney, and Health Care Proxy or as complicated as your specific circumstance demonstrates. Each case is fact sensitive depending on your assets and wants.This can mean any of the following services:
- Last Will and Testament with a Guardianship Provision for Minor Children
- Testamentary Trusts
- Medicaid Trusts or Income Only Irrevocable Trusts
- Living Trusts or Revocable Trusts
- Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts or ILITs
- 1st Party Special Needs Trusts or Supplemental Needs Trusts
- 3rd Party Special Needs Trusts or Supplemental Needs Trusts