what to do with a will after death

Wills, Trusts & Probate Lawyer

Serving all of Connecticut, New York State & New York City

Custom Estate Plans

Your Estate Plan is a very personal matter. It is an opportunity to plan your legacy: to speak for yourself, one last time, after your death. Who will handle the financial affairs when you pass away? Who will make sure your family and close friends are provided for? Who will take care of your children? What will happen to your remains? Who will get your pets? Or perhaps your firearms? These are all of the questions that you can answer in your estate documents and Last Will and Testament, or provide for in your Trust Document.

Estate Plans can be complicated or simple. Like the clients we serve, no two estate plans are alike.

Estate plans vary from simple powers of attorney and directives allowing certain individuals to carry on your affairs in case of death or incapacity, to relatively basic wills that provide for last wishes and distribute remaining assets, to complex trust agreements that can allow you to do just about anything with your money.

For individuals and families with relatively few assets and relatively low risk of sudden life changing circumstances, a Will based plan may suffice. Will based plans also include any “ancillary” documents such as a health care directive (“living will”), financial power of attorney, medical power of attorney, HIPAA authorizations, and child protection plan. Will Based plans are:

If you are the type of person that does not want the details of your estate to become a public record, you might consider the option of setting up a trust to transfer your property upon death (or sooner). Unlike a will, a trust is a private document that will not be filed with the probate court. Depending on the complexity of your situation, the value of your estate, and what you are looking to accomplish, different documents will be needed.

All estate plans include unlimited revisions for 30 days after signing.

Probate Settlement

The services we will perform in connection with Probate Settlement include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Initial advice and assistance to you, as the Executor and/or Trustee, in reviewing and understanding the Will/Trust document and advising on the preliminary steps to fulfill your fiduciary duties;  continued education throughout the process as to how to meet your obligations as fiduciary.
  • Open a Probate if necessary.  File the original Will with the probate court.
  • Assist in filing death claims, if desired.
  • Review the assets; Assist Financial Advisor in allocation of funds, if necessary.
  • Prepare the Inventory for filing and/or internal purposes; Assist in Monitoring Investments; Prepare and file any necessary Administrative and/or Final Accountings.
  • Obtain a Tax ID number for the Estate and/or Administrative Trust, and all subsequent Trusts as they are established.
  • Coordinate with your tax preparer to ensure the proper tax returns are filed, and that the values most advantageous to the Estate are utilized.
  • Oversee the opening of an Estate and/or Trust checking account, if needed.  Research, discuss and advise on the disposition of an existing checking account.
  • Give notice to creditors, if any.  Assist in the examination of claims, paying those that are uncontested and denying those that are contested.
  • Such other reasonably necessary legal work as is required depending on the unique nature of each Estate and/or Trust.