Suffolk County NY Estate Planning Elder Attorneys: Burner Law Group, P.C.
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Burner Law Group

Elder Law

Gifting to Minors

Gifting to Minors

Question: I want to designate my grandchildren as the beneficiaries of my retirement accounts and life insurance policies. Currently, they are ages 4 and 6. Is this possible? Can I simply complete a new designated beneficiary form with my financial institutions? Answer: You can absolutely designate minor children to receive money under retirement accounts and life insurance policies. However, you NEVER want to designate that the child receive those monies outright. In other words, you would not...more »

Estate Planning for Teachers

Estate Planning for Teachers

Q: I am a teacher and currently off for summer break.  Now that I have time to myself, what should I be thinking about over the summer regarding my estate plan? What about retirement? What actions should I be taking? A: Summer is the best time to check items off your “to-do” list that get pushed off during the busy school year.  You just spent the last ten months teaching and giving everything you have to your students.  It is now time to do something for yourself,...more »

College Age Children and Estate Planning Documents

College Age Children and Estate Planning Documents

Question: My son is 18 and is leaving for his first year of college in September. Someone told me that there were some legal documents I should have in place before he leaves. This is the first that I have heard of this, as his school did not say anything. Is my friend correct? Answer: Yes, your friend is correct. With so many other things to worry about during this stage, it may be overwhelming to begin to consider the legal implications of your child reaching "adulthood." Yes, that's right,...more »

Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts for Assisted Living

Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts for Assisted Living

Question: About six years ago my parents signed two trusts: a revocable trust and an irrevocable trust. They transferred about $150,000.00 into the revocable trust and their house into the irrevocable trust They sold their home about three years and deposited $400,000.00 into the irrevocable trust. My dad passed away and my mom is at an assisted living.  I went to the bank and I was told that I do not have access to the revocable trust because I am not the Trustee but I am the Trustee of...more »

The Secure Act

The Secure Act

Question: What is the SECURE ACT and how might it affect my retirement benefits? Answer: the SECURE ACT is a proposed law that has been passed by the United States House of Representatives and is expected to pass in the United States Senate. Once passed in the Senate, it will be sent to the President for signature where it will become law. If passed, the Secure Act will change some of the rules for retirement plans and how we save for retirement. Some of the changes are positive to the retiree...more »

Consenting to the Probate of a Will

Consenting to the Probate of a Will

Q: My mother recently passed away and I received something in the mail called a “Waiver of Process; Consent to Probate”, what does this document mean? A: You received this document because the Executor is trying to “probate” your mother’s Will.  Probating a Will means that the Executor is submitting a petition to Court and asking that the Court issue “letters testamentary” which allow the Executor to act.  Most people think that upon death,...more »

Do I Need to Redo My Will?

Do I Need to Redo My Will?

Question:  Its been fifteen years since we signed our will.  Although our children are now grown, we still want them to get everything.  Is there any reason to re do it? Answer: Great question and one that we are asked often.  While it may be the case that the will is sufficient, there are a number of reasons that at a minimum you should consult with an attorney, have it reviewed and see whether there is any additional estate planning that you should consider.  While a...more »

Estate Planning for the Blended Family

Estate Planning for the Blended Family

We live in a modern world where blended families are becoming more and more common.  A blended family is one made up of two spouses where at least one spouse has children from a previous marriage or relationship.  Blended families can also include two spouses, their children, and grandchildren from multiple relationships.  Because of the complexity involved in a blended family, proper estate planning is essential to ensure a client’s goals are met. Spouses used to create...more »

Executor Commissions

Executor Commissions

Question: I am the nominated executor of my friend’s estate.  If I am appointed as executor, would I get paid for the work I do? Answer:  Yes, you would be entitled to be paid for the work you perform as executor.  The payment received by an executor is referred to as a commission.  In order to determine the amount of an executor’s commission, you would first look to your friend’s last will and testament to see if there is language stating what the executor...more »

Guardianship

Guardianship

Q: I have an elderly aunt.  I’m embarrassed to say that I only visit once every few months.  I recently learned that she has a caretaker that has moved into her house and I suspect she is taking money from my aunt. When I asked my aunt about it she got angry.  What can I do to protect her? A:  Your aunt may very well be the victim of elder abuse.  It sounds as if she has become vulnerable because of her inability to take care of all of her own needs and the...more »

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