Manhattan Trusts Lawyers Providing Services Which Help Estates Protect Their Assets and Avoid Probate
Is your estate plan well-crafted? With the help of experienced Manhattan trust and estate lawyers, you can make sure your assets are effectively managed. Additionally, a trust attorney can help ensure that you are making well-informed decisions about your family and finances while putting your plans into effect quickly and efficiently.
Trusts can help ensure that your assets are managed and held in the correct form for future use by your family members or any intended beneficiaries.
At the law firm of Ortiz & Ortiz, LLP, we have been serving clients throughout Brooklyn, The Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island for over 30 years. Don’t hesitate to call us so that we can schedule a consultation and speak about what services we may be able to provide to you and your case.
Our Manhattan trusts attorneys work in areas related to estate planning, disposing of or selling a client’s estate at death, and managing the estate during the client’s life. A lot of people mistakenly believe that estates are a matter only for the wealthy and powerful. But almost everyone across Manhattan has an estate. In this vital area of law, the use of trusts, wills, and other estate planning documents can be useful for ensuring that property goes to your intended beneficiaries and conflict between heirs is kept to a minimum. Other advance directives such as a power of attorney or a health care proxy can be really helpful, too.
What Services Can a Manhattan Trust Attorney Provide to You?
The truth is that the lack of an estate plan can often result in unintended beneficiaries of your estate, probate in multiple jurisdictions, exposure to inheritance and estate taxes, or liquidity that results in insufficient estate assets to provide for administrative expenses or taxes. Without proper wills and trusts in place, a dispute may also erupt between supposed heirs who believe that they should have received more from the estate.
Our Manhattan trusts lawyers can provide the following services:
- We can explain the crucial differences between an irrevocable trust and a revocable trust and help you make an informed decision as to which estate planning tool most optimally suits your needs.
- Help plan for retention provisions and contingencies that you may not be able to anticipate on your own.
- Help you protect your assets from creditors.
- Develop a plan of action to obtain a minimum exposure to inheritance taxes.
- Draft a trust that fulfills your wishes for the estate and your beneficiaries.
- We can assist you with the administration of the trust and inform your trustee of their fiduciary responsibilities.
- We can take steps to better help your estate avoid the probate court process.
Manhattan trust lawyer Norma E. Ortiz’s legal practice includes bankruptcy, real estate law, probate law, estate planning, and business law. As a financial and legal professional with over 30 years of experience, as well as being versed in different practice areas and legal issues, she will analyze every detail pertaining to your case in pursuit of the most satisfactory outcome for you and your heirs.
Norma E. Ortiz will help you decide if a trust would be the right fit for your needs and what form of trust would be suitable for you. She will also consider other forms of asset protection that may be available. For personalized, attentive services and a professional case evaluation, contact us by email, phone or book an online consultation right now.
What Are Revocable Trusts?
The New York Revocable Living Trust is an estate planning instrument that provides the benefits of a trust to your heirs. At the same time, it allows you to monitor your assets throughout your life and gives you a way to determine how your assets are managed in the event that you become disabled or incapacitated.
What Are Irrevocable Trusts?
Although it is true that revocable living trusts can provide many cost-saving benefits, they won’t provide relief from estate tax. Placing assets in an irrevocable living trust can protect them from being subject to estate tax. Additionally, it can prevent the income they generate from being attributed to you as taxable income. Therefore, an irrevocable trust can be a solution for large estates which hold a lot of money, valuables, or property.
Which is Better, Trusts or Wills?
Depending on your goals, family dynamic, and the nature of your assets, a will may be enough for you and your estate’s needs. Alternatively, however, a Last Will and Testament can be used in combination with a trust established during your lifetime, which may be the right option for your estate.
If you want to take care of your beneficiaries before your death, you may want to create a trust. Also, if you want to avoid the probate court process, then you will want to consider putting property and finances into a trust.
If, however, your estate is of small size and you only intend to leave goods to your heirs after you are gone, then it could be that a will is enough for you.
A trust lawyer at our law firm will study your case and help you determine the smartest option to achieve your goals. For a case evaluation, please contact our law offices.
What Are Other Types of Trusts?
Trusts serve a broad range of goals and that is why they come in many different forms. Other types of trusts include:
- Asset protection trusts. These trusts are not legally recognized in the vast majority of states across the country.
- Blind trusts. These trusts give the trustee full control over the trust, even keeping any intended beneficiary in the dark.
- Charitable trusts. A lawyer may suggest you set up a charitable trust to help establish some goodwill, avoid taxation, and distribute assets to charity.
- Credit shelter trusts. If you are wealthy, your lawyer may suggest a credit shelter, to maximize your tax exemptions.
- Funded or unfunded trusts. An unfunded trust does not hold title ownership to any assets within it after the death of the trust’s creator.
- Insurance trusts. If you have a good life insurance policy, your attorney may suggest an insurance trust.
- Living trusts. When you put assets into a living trust, you are still the owner of those assets and may have access to them over your lifetime.
- Special needs trusts. These trusts can create a safety net for loved ones with special needs without disqualifying them for Medicaid and other government benefits.
- Supplemental needs trusts. This trust can enhance the quality of life for a person with special needs, going beyond what Medicaid can and does offer.
- Testamentary trusts. A testamentary trust is not funded and does not go into effect until the passing of its creator and works in coordination with a Last Will and Testament.
Currently, our firm works with revocable and irrevocable trusts, the two basic and most common types of trusts in New York.
What Are the Duties and Responsibilities of a Trustee?
When you create a trust with the assistance of an attorney, you will also be tasked with selecting who will operate the trust. If you are creating a living trust and are confident in your abilities to make important decisions, you may select yourself to manage the trust as the trustee. For other types of trusts, or simply in other types of personal situations, a person is encouraged to select a trustee.
Deciding who would make good trustees can be difficult, as it is an important financial decision. If you would not entrust this person with your credit card or otherwise act in your best interests in other financial or legal issues, you may not want to put them in charge of managing a trust. Not to sound silly, but your trustee should be trustworthy.
Trustees manage the trust’s assets and established goals. You may allow them to act as a fiduciary, making important investments and selling stocks and bonds. Your trustee will also act like a guardian of the assets you have put into the trust, ensuring that they are safe and well maintained for their eventual distribution to any beneficiaries. They may also be tasked with keeping receipts, filing taxes, and paying certain fees for the estate. Their services will continue until the creator of the trust ultimately decides to revoke their powers, or the trust becomes invalid by other means, for example, the death of its creator in some cases.
The trustee’s list of responsibilities is long and occasionally complex. They may be forced to settle a dispute between beneficiaries or go to court when the process calls for it. They are usually paid respectable fees for their services.
If the trustee dies before the goals of the trust are completed, a successor trustee will take their place. When you are building your trust, it is important that you select a successor with the help of your attorney.
Contact a Manhattan Trust Attorney to Better Understand the Value of Creating a Trust
The reality is that a carefully crafted trust can bring significant financial benefits, as we have seen above. Examples of these are helping to transfer assets more efficiently, avoiding costly court filing fees, and protecting clients from unnecessary taxes.
Whether you’re looking to avoid unnecessary capital gains taxes, protect your estate property, pursue a charitable cause, or are trying to protect a child with a disability, a trust can be the estate planning tool you need to achieve your goals.
If the process of creating a trust or considering any of the many important legal measures to plan your estates seems overwhelming to you, that is okay. At our office, each attorney is experienced in helping new clients through the process of estate planning, drafting a Last Will and Testament, and building a solid trust. Do not let the fact that you are inexperienced new clients scare you away from speaking to a trust lawyer about your case or expressing your concerns. While every case is unique, each attorney at our office has years of experience and knowledge so that they may help you feel more confident as they walk you through the process.
To learn more about this estate planning tool or any of our related services, contact a trust lawyer at our office today. Ortiz & Ortiz, LLP is pleased to assist individuals and families throughout Manhattan and New York City’s five boroughs. Please call 917-920-6437 to schedule your consultation with a trust lawyer now.