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Living Trust vs Will

The Role of a Living Trust or a Will in the Transfer of Assets

It isn't surprising that people often do not have a serious discussion about their financial situation. While talking about money is uncomfortable, avoiding it could prove disastrous. It's important to have a frank discussion with a New York City living trust lawyer before a person may experience illness or frailty, and a good place to start is a discussion about a Living Trust or a Will.

Typically, the Living Trust provides that the person creating the trust (the "grantor") transfer their assets into the Living Trust for their own benefit during their lifetime (lifetime "beneficiary") and then for the benefit of any beneficiaries (remainder "beneficiaries"). The grantor will usually be the trustee of the Living Trust. This means that the grantor will control the trust property. In addition, the grantor can amend or revoke the Living Trust . One advantage of a Living Trust over a Will is the avoidance of probate. Probate is a state Court proceeding in which a Last Will is validated by the Court. All Wills must be probated to be effective. Which should you have, a Living Trust or a Will? You should consult with a qualified estate planning attorney to help you decide.

It may not always be easy or accommodating to transfer assets into a Living Trust. Here is a list of potential assets that may need to be transferred.  Remember, if the asset is not owned by the trust, the trust provisions cannot control its disposition. A living trust lawyer in New York City can advise you in greater detail.

(a)  Real Estate - if you want to transfer a home or other real property to a trust, a new deed must be made and recorded with the local real estate records.  In New York City certain tax transfer forms such as the New York City Real Property Transfer Tax and New York State tax papers must be prepared and filed along with the deed.

(b)  Cooperative Apartment - when a cooperative apartment is being transferred, the cooperative corporation must be contacted so that it can approve the transfer.  The cooperative corporation will need to issue a new stock certificate naming the trust as the owner of the apartment.  There may be other papers and fees to pay in order to obtain the corporation's approval of the transfer.

(c)  Mortgages - if the real estate or cooperative apartment that is being transferred to the trust is subject to a mortgage, it is necessary to notify the mortgage bank and to obtain its approval.  If you do not let the bank  know, it may advise you that the mortgage must be immediately paid in full due to the unauthorized transfer.

(d)  Bank and brokerage accounts - banks and brokerage companies all have various forms and authorizations that must be completed before the name on any account can be changed into a trust.  All requirements must be investigated thoroughly so that the transfer is properly completed.

As a living trust attorney in New York City, I was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1979 and admitted to the Supreme Court of the United States in 1982 after graduating in the top 10% of my class at The New England School of Law in Boston. I was admitted to the United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit and the United States District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York. I started my own law practice in New York City in 1985. I have many years of experience successfully working with and advising clients in creating and executing plans that effectively express their personal desires regarding the disposition and protection of assets. I do this while providing potential tax advantages and security for family and beneficiaries.

For personalized attentive service from a New York City living trust attorney, please call (212) 355-2575 or arrange to visit me at 845 Third Avenue, Suite 1400, New York, NY 10022 (near 52nd Street)

Client Reviews
I am very grateful to Mr. Jules Martin Haas attorney of law in New York. I am from Buenos Aires Argentina. He managed with expertise a very difficult situation. of a complicate heritage from my aunt Anna Grodzka that lived and died a very long time ago in New York. I recommend him not only for his extraordinary knowledge but also for his kindness. Irma CW Peusner
I found Mr. Haas after being misguided by a former attorney. Mr. Jules Haas took our case which involved an estate/trust dispute. What initially seemed like an impossible and overwhelming legal fight was now in the hands of someone who had the integrity and legal expertise to win our case. Mr Haas' attention to detail and his expert knowledge base, skillfully and successfully guided us through an intricate legal process. I am very thankful and grateful to Mr. Jules Haas for representing our interest and ultimately winning. Bringing about a peace of mind we needed. Thank You Devida Nedd
I was in need of a guardianship attorney and I hired the services of Jules M. Haas' Law firm. The service of counselor Haas and his staff, was very profesional and the case was handled in a timely matter. I would strongly recommend his services Angel Guevara
I strongly recommend Jules Haas. I have worked with him for two years and he has provided so much support and followed through with everything he promised he would do. His support staff is just as helpful! We had an interesting case and he helped to solve each part of it legally and was very thorough. Thank you for everything you have done to finalize our families estate Robyn Stafford
Jules Haas helped me with managing the process in probate court for my father's estate through to its completion upon the sale of my father's house. He was knowledgeable, efficient, and effective in submitting documentation to the probate court, explaining procedures to me, and advising me as to the progress of my case. His support staff was also very helpful. He made what for me created so much anxiety into something manageable where I could see progress every step of the way. His fees were very reasonable. I am super grateful to him for all the help he has provided and strongly recommend his services. Diana Janer
I just completed an estate transaction where Jules Haas represented my client in an estate and he did a great job! He was very quick at responding to all matters throughout the sale process, he was detailed, he was knowledgeable and he was a pleasure to work with. I just recommended him to some new clients who are going through an estate matter and will continue to recommend him. Rodolfo Lucchese