Knowing your options helps you to plan wisely

FitzGerald Morris Baker Firth, P.C. offers legal expertise and assistance with planning options ranging from simple WillsPowers of Attorney and Health Care Documents to more complex planning involving Revocable Trusts and Irrevocable Trusts. Trusts are an excellent method for avoiding the cost and delay involved in probating an estate through Surrogate’s Court and, in certain circumstances, reducing estate tax liability. Trusts also allow clients to plan more easily for business succession and to meet the needs of any children with disabilities or others with special needs.

The firm guides families through the steps of settling an estate, whether in probate through the Surrogate’s Court or with the termination and distribution of a trust. In addition to preparing all required documentation and appearing in court where necessary, we assist in the liquidation and distribution of clients’ assets, payment of final bills and expenses, including detailed accountings for all financial transactions and preparation of estate tax returns, where required.

We are dedicated to optimizing the preservation of a family’s accumulated wealth and facilitating the attainment of their philanthropic goals. We help clients define their wealth transfer objectives in light of the relevant legal and tax rules and develop and implement estate plans to accomplish their objectives.

By clearly informing families of the options available to them, we help clients plan wisely. We ensure clear understanding of estate plans and of the practical effect of those plans on beneficiaries. We often work with clients to establish private foundations and other means of meeting their charitable goals. We frequently counsel and represent personal representatives and estate trustees in all post-mortem phases of the planning and administration of estates and trusts.

At FitzGerald Morris Baker Firth, P.C., our estate planning practice also provides counsel to institutional clients, including banks and other fiduciaries, regarding federal and state tax issues, will construction (including issuance of legal opinions), and the reformation of trusts for tax and non-tax purposes. We advise charitable organizations, including private foundations of all sizes, medical research organizations, and other groups, regarding state and federal tax law, relevant corporate or trust law.

In addition to providing counsel and services to families and individuals, trustees and fiduciaries, foundations and other nonprofits, we also litigate estate and gift-related issues as needed.

Through our team approach, our estate planning practice collaborates with other practice groups in our firm (e.g. real estate, business/corporate and litigation) for expert, comprehensive, and effective service.