By Jennifer F. Hillman *
accounts are frequently utilized to assist the elderly or infirm with their
financial obligations. The account
holder will add an additional person to the account which gives them the
ability to write checks, pay bills and perform other banking functions for...
A recent article in the
New York Daily News entitled Man Claiming to Be Son of Dead Brooklyn Priest Loses Battle for
Piece of His Estate provided a sensational
headline for an interesting scenario involving paternity and inheritance under
the New York Estate Powers and Trust Law (EPTL). In the Matter...
Pursuant to NY Surrogates
Court Procedure Act (SCPA) 707 , letters may issue to a person authorized by law
to be a fiduciary, except in the circumstances specifically enumerated in the
statute. The allegation that a petitioner is "incompetent to execute the duties
of his office by reason of...
Settlement of a wrongful death action can pose a challenge
for the decedent's attorney. Wrongful death actions are usually a two-step
process. First, the trial court handles the wrongful death action itself, and then
the Surrogate's Court, which administers the decedent's estate, must deal...
By Jennifer F. Hillman, Esq.
Against Perpetuities is an often misunderstood rule which strikes panic in the
hearts of many law students and practitioners alike. Simply put, the rule
limits the ability of owners to control future dispositions of their property.
Under NY EPTL 9-1.1(a...
In New York, a lifetime trust shall be valid as to any
assets that are effectively transferred to the trust. However, a transfer is
not accomplished by a simple recital of assignment or a listing of an asset on
Schedule A. Matter of Rothwell , 189
Misc. 2d 191, 730 N.Y.S.2d 664 (Sur. Ct. Dutchess...
By: Jennifer F. Hillman, Esq.
A recent decision out of the New York Appellate Division
Second Department broadened the range of powers enumerated to an
attorney-in-fact to include the ability to amend a previously executed irrevocable
inter vivos trust.
The facts in Perosi v.
LiGreci , 948...
Many estate litigators are familiar with the fight for
disclosure of personal income tax returns or financial documents. Perhaps you have represented the beneficiary
who insists upon the disclosure of a trustee's personal income tax returns
because they are certain some "funny business"...
What's fair is fair - or at least that's the concept behind the pro tanto rule wherein a surcharge against a fiduciary is limited to the interest of the objecting party and not the other beneficiaries who stood by and failed to act in their own interest. In the absence of an objection, the account...
It is well-understood by estate
practitioners that a beneficiary of an estate should not serve as an attesting witness
to a will. If he does, he or she is a
competent witness for purposes of probating the will, however, under EPTL
3-3.2 , the bequest under the will is void unless (i) two other persons...
By Jennifer F. Hillman and Leora A. Ardizzone
Physicians and other licensed health care providers labor many years to build their practices. However, unlike many other businesses a health care practice cannot be passed by will or otherwise to the provider's spouse or children, unless they too...
By Jennifer F. Hillman
Pursuant to New York Surrogate Court Procedure Act ("SCPA") § 711, a fiduciary cannot remove property of an estate from New York without prior approval of the Court. A violation of this duty could lead to suspension, modification of letters testamentary or removal...
By: Jennifer F. Hillman, Esq.
When the nominated executor under a will is also the attorney-draftsman (or an employee of that attorney) additional disclosures are necessary to assure that the nominated executor will receive their full statutory commissions. Pursuant to New York Surrogate’s Court...