Experienced New York Probate And Estate Administration Representation
During a time of grief, it is often hard to take the next step and deal with the finances of a deceased loved one. With main offices in Smithtown and Bay Shore as well as satellite offices in Southampton on Long Island, Futterman, Lanza & Pasculli, LLP, provides representation needed to effectively resolve probate and estate administration issues for families in Nassau County, Suffolk County and communities throughout New York.
We understand how overwhelming the legal process can seem for families faced with probate and estate administration. It is our goal to make legal matters less cumbersome for our clients.
From the start, we help our clients by taking an inventory of assets to determine whether each asset has a beneficiary, is jointly held or is under the name of the deceased. When no joint ownership exists, a last will and testament can identify an executor to take charge of the estate. The distribution of assets and beneficiaries is also listed in a will. When no will exists, New York law determines how assets are distributed.
Estate Administration Guidance
A petition is prepared and submitted to the county court of the deceased to begin acting on behalf of the estate. Estate administration can involve the payment of debt, estate taxes and income taxes, as well as the liquidation of bank accounts, stocks, bonds and mutual funds, and the sale of real estate and personal property. Executors and administrators must properly address every step to avoid any personal liability.
Our attorneys are skilled legal advocates for clients faced with probate and estate administration and other elder law issues. We ensure a proper approach is used to complete every detail involved with probate and estate administration.
Basically, probate is a legal process that takes place after someone dies in order to legally transfer the title in assets to the beneficiaries designated in a will. The laws of intestacy also govern the process for the distribution of property where there has been no will. The law provides for the determination of who qualifies as an heir to the deceased and what portion of the assets his or her position in the family entitles them to receive. During the probate process, an executor (or administrator, if there was no will) will go through many routine tasks, such as
- Identifying and inventorying estate property
- Paying estate debts and taxes
- Distributing property as directed by a will or state law
Though probate may seem simple, in real life, the process usually is not. Often several different persons are interested in the probate estate, including: creditors, family members, beneficiaries, a surviving spouse and the personal representative for the estate. Each has a different interest in the probate administration that is protected by New York law. In addition to the expected responsibilities, there may be other legal problems, such as relatives contesting their share of the estate, a challenge to the validity of a will or the size and types of debts included as obligations of the estate. Because of these competing interests, the steps undertaken to complete a probate administration can be lengthy, time-consuming and costly — if done improperly.