New York State Estate Planning FAQ

Planning your and your family's financial future can be stressful and scary, not to mention estate planning laws can be complicated to understand. Here is a New York estate planning FAQ set up to answer your questions. If you have additional questions, call Connors and Sullivan Attorneys at Law, PLLC, at 718-414-6209 or contact us online.

Estate Planning FAQs

Q: Do I need to have a will?

A: Yes. A will is an important way to designate exactly how you want your money and property shared among your family and friends after your death. No matter how much money you have, it is important to have a will. Additionally, if you have minor-aged children, a will allows you to account for guardianship issues.

Q: What happens if I don't have a will?

A: If you die without a will, the state of New York will divide up your money and property. This can lead to complications within your family if people do not believe it is fair.

Q: When I die, do I have to pay taxes on my money?

A: Yes. Your assets will be taxed by what is called a "death tax" by the federal government and possibly the state government. An estate planning attorney can help you understand the possible tax implications and take steps to protect your assets.

Q: What is the job of my executor?

A: Your executor is responsible for gathering your assets, making sure your debts and taxes are paid, and distributing the money to your beneficiaries.

Q: Should I assign a power of attorney?

A: Yes. Your power of attorney will be responsible for making decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated. You can assign someone to make both financial and health care decisions, or you can assign these duties to different people.

Q: What is probate?

A: Probate is a hearing for a judge to validate a will after someone passes away.

Q: If my parents are in a nursing home, can we still create a plan?

A: Yes, but it is important to create the plan as soon as possible so that there are no complications when they pass.

Q: What is a health care proxy?

A: A health care proxy is a document that is used to appoint someone to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.

Q: If I die, who will take care of my pets?

A: You can set up an animal companion trust that determines who keeps your pet after you pass and how the pet will be cared for.

Any Additional Estate Planning Questions? Give Us A Call.

This list is by no means comprehensive. If you have any questions about planning your estate, you can call our Brooklyn office at 718-414-6209.