Millman Law Firm’s emphasis is estate planning and the use of tax-advantaged vehicles to better serve our clients. This includes representation of estates and trusts , successful representation of IRS estate and income tax audits, representation in the United States Tax Court, estate law consultations, Surrogate Court litigation of trust and will contests, probate administration and estate planning. Our clients include families, individuals, and corporations for whom we have planned and administered estates, planned generational transfer of businesses, and performed services involving small probate matters to multi-million dollar trusts and estates.
Estate planning is much more than writing a simple will. It is the process by which one’s wishes are made known both during one’s lifetime and after death by memorializing them in a document known as a will. With the guidance and expertise of an estate planning attorney, potential state and federal estate taxes are minimized as well as administrative costs with the intent to preserve your assets for your loved ones.
Simple and Complex Wills with Testamentary Trusts
We interview you to determine exactly what type of will and estate plan will suit your needs.
Durable Powers of Attorney
We will guide our clients to help them create a Durable Power of Attorney, which will allow them to appoint who they want to have control over financial decisions when the client is not physically or mentally capable. This is done through the preparation of a Durable Power of Attorney. If not carefully thought out and drafted properly, the power of attorney may not be sufficiently comprehensive. A complete and comprehensive durable power should be part of every estate plan and will help to avoid a guardianship proceeding.
Health Care Proxy/Living Will
A good estate plan will also include advance or contingency planning with regard to health care treatment. This advance directive called a combined Living Will and Health Care Proxy will be drawn up taking into account each client’s own unique wishes regarding a very personal and difficult time in one’s life. Some difficult questions must be considered and answered with sensitivity and personal consideration given to each and every client. Our clients are guided through this process professionally and with great care. Due to recent changes in New York, it is suggested that everyone update this important document
Family Limited Partnerships
This is a good tool to transfer wealth. Many families use this to transfer their vacation home to their heirs using the annual gift exclusion to transfer the property free of estate and gift taxes.
Grantor Retained Interest Trusts and Defective Trusts
This is an advanced estate and tax planning tool whereby your beneficiaries receive the income from the trust without incurring an income tax burden making the effective gift larger.
Life Insurance Trusts
Life insurance is critical for young families to create sufficient funds should catastrophe occur. It is a good tool to create the liquidity necessary to pay taxes when dealing with large estates. A good way to keep the proceeds out of an estate is through the implementation of a Life Insurance Trust.
This estate planning device is used to establish your charitable interests.
Revocable Living Trusts
These trusts provide flexibility and may simplify probate. They allow for easier access to your assets. Millman Law Firm often combines the revocable trust with a pour-over will.
Charitable Remainder Trusts
This is a trust in which typically the grantor places highly appreciated assets and receives a yearly income in return. Upon the decease of grantor and all other income beneficiaries, the remainder is paid to charity. This is a great way to avoid capital gains taxes and let your assets grow while benefiting charity.
Qualified Personal Residence Trusts
A basic tool for any sophisticated estate plan. With this device your house is transferred to your children with valuation reduced due to retained interest. This is a good first step in estate planning.
Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax Planning Strategies
This is critical for large estates to allow for growth of assets without estate taxes being imposed on the “skipped” generation.
Supplemental Needs Trusts
These Trusts are needed to protect assets in situations where a beneficiary is disabled and as a result receiving some form of government assistance. The distributions from this special trust will not disqualify the payments from government assistance.