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New York City Trusts and Estates Attorneys

In the critical moments of life, navigating complicated decisions doesn’t have to be something you face alone. Whether making advance end-of-life decisions, protecting or distributing assets, addressing the legal and financial implications of a loved one’s passing, or managing entrusted affairs, proactive legal support is essential. Holm & O’Hara LLP’s trusts and estates practice is dedicated to crafting effective estate plans that not only honor your wishes regarding your life but also safeguards your assets for your beneficiaries.

Beyond providing assistance with the fundamental advance directives such as wills, durable powers of attorney, and healthcare proxies, our experienced trusts and estates attorneys can help you strategically employ testamentary structures that will meet your unique objectives. We also work closely with heirs, trustees, and executors, ensuring the timely filing of various compliance, court, and tax documents, providing legal representation in contested estates, and addressing the complex administration challenges that arise when an estate includes commercial property or other business interests. Holm & O’Hara LLP is your partner in these crucial times, diligently working to secure the future for you and your loved ones and serving as a guiding hand during difficult and uncertain times.

Types of Trusts

Trusts serve as essential tools in estate planning, providing flexibility and control over asset distribution. They function as a repository to help protect and manage your assets. A trust is a legal entity that includes several key elements: a grantor, a trustee or trustees, beneficiaries, assets, and rules and guidelines that govern the assets. Our law firm specializes in various trust types to meet the diverse needs of our clients.

Living Trusts

A living trust, also known as a grantor trust or a revocable trust, is a legal document designed to manage one’s assets during the grantor’s lifetime and provides for the distribution of assets after the grantor’s death. It also has the additional benefit of allowing one’s estate to bypass probate after death, thus saving an estate significant time and money. As the name suggests, a revocable trust can be amended or revoked at any time during the creator’s lifetime with greater ease than changing a Last Will & Testament. With this type of trust, the creator (grantor) can also serve as the sole trustee and beneficiary during the grantor’s lifetime.

Irrevocable Trusts

If you are thinking about transferring assets to other individuals during your lifetime but want to provide some restrictions and safeguards on the assets, such as gifting money to a child who is not capable of managing it outright, an irrevocable trust may be the best vehicle for accomplishing this goal. Unlike a revocable trust, the creator (grantor) of the trust can serve as the trustee but not the beneficiary. As the name suggests, these trusts are irrevocable and serve as a separate entity owning the assets.

Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts

An irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT) is used to manage life insurance policies and allocate benefits after you pass away. An ILIT is designed to exclude life insurance policies from your taxable estate while making funds available to your beneficiaries. With an ILIT, the trust is the policy owner, offering significant estate tax benefits. As the name suggests, ILITs are irrevocable, meaning they cannot be altered or terminated by the grantor.

Charitable Remainder Unitrusts

Charitable Remainder Unitrusts (CRUTs) are irrevocable trusts that provide an income stream for beneficiaries for a set amount of time (typically for life), with the remainder going to a charity of your choice when the payment term ends. This arrangement offers valuable income tax deductions and can be used to avoid capital gains taxes. A CRUT can help fund retirement and/or provide for other beneficiaries while ultimately supporting your philanthropic goals.

Grantor-Retained Annuity Trusts

A Grantor-Retained Annuity Trust (GRAT) is a common trust strategy that can help individuals and families with assets that are expected to appreciate in value. This strategy allows you to transfer the appreciation of those assets to beneficiaries, potentially free of estate and gift taxes, while receiving a steady income, resulting in significant savings on estate-tax liability. A GRAT is an irrevocable trust and ensures that individuals can move wealth to beneficiaries while using little to none of their lifetime federal gift and estate tax exclusion.

How Our Trusts and Estates Attorneys Can Help

Navigating the complexities of estate planning can be daunting. A skilled and experienced hand is required to maximize your savings and ensure your wishes are followed. Our attorneys are here to guide you through each step.

Estate Administration

We facilitate the efficient administration and settlement of estates, working closely with executors, trustees, and beneficiaries to ensure a seamless process while addressing legal compliance and tax obligations.

Probate Proceeding

Our firm expedites probate proceedings, providing diligent support and representation to beneficiaries and executors. Even when a will is present and straightforward, probate proceedings are required to carry out the wishes of the testator and can be complex. We tackle the legal challenges, allowing you to focus on honoring the memory of your loved one.

Administration Proceeding

In cases where an individual dies without leaving a valid last will and testament, the estate is administered according to New York’s intestacy laws. Intestacy laws determine the distribution of assets depending on who the living relatives are and their relationship to the deceased. Our dedicated attorneys can help by ensuring lawful distribution of assets among rightful heirs and beneficiaries.

Estate Tax Planning and Returns

At Holm & O’Hara LLP, we craft strategic plans designed to minimize estate and income tax liabilities, thereby maximizing the wealth transferred to your heirs. We also work diligently to ensure timely and accurate estate tax return compliance. The laws surrounding estate tax and returns can be complicated. Early planning with the help of our trusts and estates attorneys can help insulate you from substantial loss of your assets to state and federal estate taxes.

Fiduciary Account Services

Fiduciaries have a great responsibility to keep financial records and distribute assets to beneficiaries. Our trusts and estates attorneys offer meticulous fiduciary accounting services, maintaining transparent and accurate records that stand up to scrutiny, thereby safeguarding the interests of both the estate and the beneficiaries.

Estate Planning

Our seasoned estate planning attorneys assist in creating comprehensive estate plans, incorporating wills, powers of attorney, health care proxies, and other advance directives, thoughtfully crafted to reflect your wishes and protect your assets.

Charitable Planning

For clients who desire to leave a philanthropic legacy, we facilitate the establishment of charitable trusts and foundations, ensuring compliance with legal requirements while advancing their altruistic objectives.

Consult an NYC Trusts and Estates Attorney

When choosing a trusts and estates attorney in New York City, consider Holm & O’Hara LLP’s unparalleled experience and hands-on approach. Our commitment to personal service and a deep understanding of trust and estate law position us as leaders in the field. To safeguard your legacy and ensure a secure future for your family, consult our attorneys today. Assure peace of mind in your critical moments with Holm & O’Hara LLP.

For a consultation regarding your unique circumstances, contact us today to schedule an appointment with a dedicated New York City trusts and estates attorney at Holm & O’Hara LLP.

Practice Areas

Estate Planning

Our estate planning attorneys provide comprehensive estate planning services tailored to your needs

Estate Administration

Experienced and compassionate counsel can ease the challenge of managing and settling the affairs of a loved one

Probate Proceeding

The legal process of validating a will and administering the estate of the deceased

Estate Tax Planning

Gift with intention while minimizing the tax consequences for beneficiaries

Estate Tax Returns

Ensure compliance with both state and federal regulations when filing estate tax returns

Fiduciary Accounting Services

Expert assistance for our fiduciary clients


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Holm & O’Hara LLP’s Trusts & Estates practice is dedicated to crafting effective estate plans that honor your wishes and safeguard your assets

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