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Estate Planning

Our firm takes a broad perspective in providing estate planning services to clients. While recognizing that our clients often desire to benefit their heirs and minimize the burden of taxes and administrative costs, we also recognize that our clients have important family, business and charitable objectives that must be taken into account in designing their estate plans.

Our estate planning services include traditional wills and revocable living trusts. In appropriate situations our firm also provides more tax sensitive and sophisticated planning services, when necessary to effectively transfer special assets, such as interests in businesses and real property. Our firm also has a long tradition of assisting clients in optimizing gifts to charities, whether through the use of direct gifts, charitable trusts or other sophisticated planning opportunities.

We also provide a broad range of probate and trust administration services. In connection with these services, we provide tax-related assistance for trusts and estates, including tax planning for and the preparation of estate and inheritance tax returns (Form 706), and fiduciary income tax returns (Form 1041). Our attorneys can also assist personal representatives, executors and trustees in making critical tax decisions and elections and in representing estates and trusts in connection with tax disputes before the Internal Revenue Service or other estate taxing authorities.

Our attorneys also have considerable expertise in representing clients in disputes arising from estate and trust matters. This expertise includes experience in will contests, disputes involving estate and trust beneficiaries, distribution issues, tax issues and other forms of estate and trust litigation.

Our estate planning legal services include:

  • Basic to sophisticated wills
  • Revocable living trusts
  • Probate and trust administration
  • Planning for and preparation of estate gift and fiduciary tax returns
  • Family limited partnerships and family limited liability companies (LLCs)
  • Estate planning relating to retirement plans and individual retirement accounts (IRAs)
  • Irrevocable trusts, including irrevocable life insurance trusts, trusts for minors and grantor trusts
  • Qualified Personal Residence Trusts (QPRTs)
  • Charitable gift planning, including charitable lead and remainder trusts
  • Succession planning for family business Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRATs), Self Canceling Installment Notes (SCINs), Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGTs)
  • Litigation of disputes involving trusts, estates, probate, conservatorships and guardianships