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Katya Sverdlov Blog

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Top 5 Reasons for Asset Protection


Please see the article that I recently wrote for Epoch Times on Asset Protection  

https://www.theepochtimes.
Read more . . .


Saturday, June 29, 2019

Recent Change to New York State Estate Tax: Gift Tax


Unlike federal law, New York State does not have a gift tax. However, up until December 31, 2018, New York State required decedents to include all gifts made within three years of death in their New York State taxable estates. As a result of a recent legislative change, this add-back rule no longer applies to decedents with dates of death after January 1, 2019.


The result is that a New York State resident may choose to gift away all of their assets during their life, and these assets will not be added back to their gross estate. Unfortunately, one must remember that New York State law and federal law differ.


Read more . . .


Saturday, June 22, 2019

Common Forms of Ownership of Property and Financial Accounts


Different forms of ownership frequently result in assets being passed by operation of law, and not according to the wishes stated in the Last Will and Testament. It is crucially important to discuss with your attorney your specific wishes and the current forms of ownership of your assets.


Property: Joint ownership of both real and personal property has been recognized for centuries. Three forms of joint ownership are recognized in New York:


1. Tenancy in Common.


Read more . . .


Tuesday, June 18, 2019

New Addition to my Firm


I am excited to announce the addition of DANIEL J. REITER, ESQ to my firm!

Daniel joins Sverdlov Law PLLC as Of Counsel. I have also joined Daniel’s firm as Of Counsel.

Our top priority has always been quality of our work and stellar client service and results. Our new Of Counsel relationship allows us to offer an enhanced array of estate, trust, special needs, and elder legal services to the community.


Read more . . .


Saturday, June 15, 2019

What is the Medical Aid in Dying Act?


Medical aid in dying is the process by which an adult, mentally competent, terminally ill patient, whose doctors have determined likely to die within six months, self-consumes prescribed medicines to end suffering and achieve a peaceful death. There are currently legislative efforts in New York State to establish Medical Aid in Dying as a right.


Has it been tried before? Medical Aid in Dying has been legal in both Oregon and Washington for over a decade. Evidence compiled from these two states demonstrates that these programs are overwhelmingly beneficial. There is no evidence of disproportionate impact on vulnerable populations - the majority of patients who choose aid in dying have health insurance and most are college educated.


Read more . . .


Saturday, June 8, 2019

Do You Need a Health Care Proxy?


In New York, the two documents that allow an individual to detail their future medical wishes are a Health Care Proxy and a Living Will. You can also combine the two into one document: in the Health Care Proxy you can both nominate and provide specific instructions to your agent.


Purpose: A Health Care Proxy allows an individual to plan their future medical decisions in the event they are incapacitated. Given the state of today's medicine, individuals are commonly subjected to advanced life support systems and invasive medical treatments that only prolong the end-of-life care. If you have any specific wishes in regards to your end-of-life care (e.


Read more . . .


Saturday, June 1, 2019

How Do You Open a Safe Deposit Box After Death?


In New York, banks will seal a safe deposit box following the death of an owner or co-owner. The bank will then only allow the safe deposit box to be opened after a Court issues an order to that effect. The following are the steps you must take:


1. Identify an interested party who can petition the court. An interested party can be the  decedent's spouse, beneficiary or a named fiduciary in the Will.


Read more . . .


Saturday, May 25, 2019

It's been 3 years since my father's death and I have not received a penny from my sister who was the appointed Executor! Should I compel an accounting?


After an Executor gets appointed in an Estate, the Executor must fulfill his duties by timely marshalling of all assets, paying all known creditors and distributing the remaining money to beneficiaries. While this is what is supposed to happen, quite often it does not.


When should you petition the court to compel an Accounting by an Executor? You can do so when you believe that Executor has withheld information, or has engaged in some sort of wrongdoing (such as self-dealing or asset mismanagement). Stealing funds from the estate, selling estate property for an artificially low price, or not distributing any money for years are all good reasons to petition the court.


Who may petition the court to compel an accounting? SPCA 2205 lists individuals and entities who may petition.


Read more . . .


Monday, May 20, 2019

Katya quoted in "How a Medicaid Spend Down Works"

Understand important Medicaid spend down rules to decide if its the right financial strategy for you.


Read more . . .


Saturday, May 18, 2019

How Can I Become an Administrator or an Executor of an Estate?


Probate or Administration: In New York, if the decedent had a Will and had assets that did not pass by operation of law (such as joint property with rights of survivorship or accounts with beneficiary designations), then the Will must be "probated" and an Executor must be appointed. If the decedent did not have a Will and had assets that did not pass by operation by law, then an Administrator must be appointed.

Who can file a Petition: In order to bring a petition of Probate or Administration to court, you must have standing. If the decedent had a Will, then the nominated Executor will be the one filing the petition. If there is no Will, then SCPA 1001 determines who has priority in becoming the Administrator of the Estate.

Read more . . .


Saturday, May 11, 2019

Removing the Executor of the Estate


Can one remove the executor or the administrator of the estate? The process is not easy, but it has been done multiple times. Below are several common grounds for removal:



•     Self-dealing. This means that the Executor of the Estate acts in the best interests of himself, instead of the interests of the creditors and the beneficiaries of the estate. It may include purchasing a house owned by the Estate at an artificially low price. Or it may include paying themself a high salary from the estate, without prior court approval.


Read more . . .


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Sverdlov Law's practice focuses on estate planning, probate and estate administration, Medicaid planning, elder law, and business succession matters.



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