Estate and Business Planning Legal Blog

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Ancillary Probate: What is it?

When someone passes away, as a resident of one state owning real property in another, it is necessary to do an ancillary proceeding.  If the decedent died leaving a will, then it is referred to as an ancillary probate, while if there was not will, it is usually referred to an ancillary administration.

Quite simply, the law, applicable to all fifty states, is that when one dies owning real property in a state other than where one resided, you not only need to probate the person's will (or administer his/her estate) in the state of residency, but in other states where the person owned property.  Of course, this can become an expensive and tedious process, especially if the person resided in or w


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Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Do I Need to Update My Will When Moving From New York to Florida?

Every year, scores of New York residents move to Florida. For so-called “snowbirds,” this move is temporary, typically lasting until the weather up north warms up. For others, however, the move from New York to Florida is permanent. Whether you are moving from New York to Florida temporarily or permanently, there are several possible estate planning consequences you should be aware of. Below are some common estate planning issues that New York residents should consider before moving to Florida.
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Monday, September 16, 2019

In Focus: Post-Divorce Estate Planning

A well-conceived estate plan will help you prepare for the expected and the unexpected. A will, for example, declares how your property will be distributed after your inevitable death, while a power of attorney designates a trusted person to manage your personal and business affairs in the event that you become incapacitated without warning. But how does a divorce impact an estate plan? The best way to protect your interests in this situation is to consult an experienced estate planning attorney.
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Sunday, September 8, 2019

Organizing One's Finances and Updating Asset Lists

It is not usually necessary for clients to have their wills and/or trusts updated, if they have been prepared properly in the first place, unless there have been changes in one's family and/or circle of friends.  It is imperative, however, that one update their asset list on a regular basis.  What is meant by this?

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Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Snowbirds Wonder: Does Having Two Homes Mean Filing Two Probates?

So many individuals and couples delight in the pleasures of spending both halves of the year in lovely climates and having alternating access to cosmopolitan New York, with its theatres and museums, and the Sunshine State, with its winter warmth, relaxing pace and gentle beaches. Being a snowbird, with homes in both Florida and New York, has become incredibly popular with those who have reached middle-age or retired since they can enjoy the benefits of both locations yet travel to friends and family within only a few hours. 

As with so many idyllic plans, this one may seem to have a catch. Since most people recoil from the word “probate” almost as much as they do from the word “taxes,” the thought of having to go through the probate process twice may seem a horrible prospect. The wise among those who already have homes in both New York and Florida, and those contemplating taking the plunge, already know how important it is to have legal advice and representation from an accomplished attorney with knowledge and experience in probate and estate administration in both states.
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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Why Should You Have a Power of Attorney?

With a power of attorney, you are essentially empowering another to act on your behalf in a legal capacity. You, the principal or grantor, authorize your attorney to carry out legal and business actions on your behalf. The power of attorney is an important aspect of the estate planning process. It can prove invaluable in a variety of critical circumstances.

Why Should You Have a Power of Attorney?

Establishing a power of attorney allows you to grant legal authority to someone you trust and enable them to act on your behalf in a variety of circumstances.
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Friday, July 5, 2019

Important Changes Affecting Health Care Planning

    For many years, purchasing long-term health care insurance was seen as the perfect way to pay for health care needs in one’s later years.  There were many great policies, which offered home care, nursing home care and care in assisted living facilities.  While many complained that the premiums were high, when weighted against the benefits, it seemed like obtaining the insurance made incredibly good sense.  

     Unfortunately, over the last few years, many companies are no longer offering long-term care insurance, and the premiums on the ones which are being sold are exhorbitant.  One option which is now being touted as an alternative is the purchase of a type of life insurance policy which has a long-term care rider.
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Monday, June 24, 2019

Medicaid Trusts

Medicaid is a need based government assistance program. To qualify for Medicaid, your income and other financial resources must fall below a certain threshold. Unfortunately, if you do not qualify for Medicaid, you can quickly see your assets dwindle as the cost of long term medical care is very expensive. The costs will eat up your financial resources and assets you wished to leave to your family and loved ones. Additionally, Medicaid only provides for certain basic care needs.
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Saturday, June 8, 2019

How to Get Along With Your Business Partner

It is quite common for someone starting a business venture, to do so with a partner, who will be sharing the responsibilities and obligations.  Other times, one will start a business and then decide at a later point that having a partner would be desirable.  Either way, it is imperative at the outset that the parties sit down, discuss, and put into writing what their expectations are of each other, in terms of the work each will perform, what the compensation will be, etc.  Equally important is what happens when one party is not fulfilling their role or wishes to leave the business.  How will the business be valued and what will the means for a pay-out be.

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Monday, May 20, 2019

Protecting Your Digital Assets

Protecting Your Digital Assets After Your Death

Although people started creating wills and thinking about post mortem asset distribution thousands of years ago, some aspects of estate planning are a great deal more current. While people have always been able to imagine and prepare for babies not yet conceived, anticipated marriages or unexpected deaths, it has not been possible to predict to plan for laws that change drastically and social norms that take a sharp turn in the future. Less than two centuries ago, for example, same-sex marriage was as unthinkable, as unthinkable as the undeniable fact that it was once legal to “own” people in this country.

Fifty years ago computers were not on the majority of desks or laps in this country and no one was yet storing important confidential financial and personal information in cyberspace. 
For this reason, it is only very recently that estate planning has come to include making arrangements for protecting digital assets as well as other property.

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Friday, May 3, 2019

Death of a Family Member: What to Do

Knowing what to do when a loved one dies can alleviate some of the uncertainty and anxiety that normally follows. Of course, funeral arrangements must be made quickly and family members must be notified.  One should order sufficient copies of the death certificate, as there may be a delay in obtaining additional copies later on.  Death certificates will be needed for each asset owned.  The funeral home usually notifies social security of the death of someone collecting benefits, so the family need only notify the provider(s) of any retirement pension which was being collected, as well as the health insurance carrier.

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At the Law Office of Angela Siegel, we are pleased to offer legal assistance to clients located in Nassau, Suffolk, Queens, Kings and New York Counties specifically but not limited to Garden City, Jericho, East Meadow, Mineola, Syosset, Roslyn, Cedarhurst, Woodmere, Hicksville, Plainview, Merrick, Wantagh, Bellmore, Rockville Center, West Hempstead, Little Neck, Douglaston, Bayside, Flushing, Forest Hills, Astoria, etc., as well as clients located within the state of Florida.

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