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Preparing for the future is a daunting task many people put off for as long as possible. Questions of asset distribution, healthcare decisions, and financial stability for loved ones could loom large. But ignoring these questions doesn’t make them go away. It only amplifies the uncertainty and stress.

Your key to confidently facing the future is creating a comprehensive estate plan that accounts for all of life’s contingencies. A well-crafted estate plan can give you peace of mind and lay a foundation for your family’s long-term security.

If you’re in Rye Brook, NY, or the surrounding area and require comprehensive planning services, Amoruso & Amoruso LLP can help. Firm partners Michael J. Amoruso and Sreelekha Chakrabarty Amoruso have nearly 60 years of combined experience in estate planning, elder law, and long-term care planning. We believe meaningful, lasting relationships with our clients are the foundation of successful planning.

If you already have an estate plan, allow Amoruso & Amoruso LLP to give it a thorough review. We’ll identify any areas that could use revisions or corrections and advise you on options for making it better based on your individual goals.  Be assured that, if no changes are needed, we will tell you and you will have the peace of mind that your plan accomplishes your objectives.

Amoruso & Amoruso LLP offers a compassionate approach to estate planning, empowering you to protect your assets, secure care for loved ones, and claim control of your future. Clients throughout Rye Brook, Rye, Port Chester, and Harrison can attest to the difference we’ve made for their estate planning needs.

Contact us today to learn how a Rye Brook estate planning lawyer can help you.

What’s the Importance of Having an Estate Plan?

An estate plan serves as a blueprint for how others should handle your assets and responsibilities when you can no longer manage them yourself. Without a proper estate plan, you leave important decisions up to state law and New York courts if you die or become incapacitated. The result could be decisions that go against your preferences or lead to family disputes.

An estate plan allows you to appoint guardians for minor children, specify how you want your assets divided, protect your children’s inheritances until they mature, and designate who can act on your behalf if you become incapacitated. Additionally, a comprehensive estate plan can minimize tax liabilities, eliminate or simplify the lengthy probate process, and provide unparalleled peace of mind.

What Is Comprehensive Estate Planning?

Comprehensive estate planning is a holistic approach to addressing your healthcare, financial, and wealth distribution needs. It is a proactive arrangement that takes a big-picture view of your personal situation and then tailors an estate plan unique to your needs and goals. A signature service at Amoruso & Amoruso LLP, our comprehensive estate planning involves coordinated efforts to manage your assets, document your wishes, and secure your family’s future.

A comprehensive estate plan should include long-term financial planning, tax planning, and long-term care planning if needed. Our estate planning lawyers often consult financial advisors and other professionals to align your plan with your broader financial goals. This customized, multi-part strategy gives you full control over your assets, healthcare, and legacy.

Rye Brook Estate Planning Lawyer

What Makes Up Comprehensive Estate Planning?

Comprehensive estate planning is a multi-faceted approach involving much more than drafting a will. It uses various legal and financial strategies to ensure all aspects of your life are adequately prepared for, especially during unexpected health emergencies or after death. A comprehensive estate plan includes:

Elder Law and Long-Term Care Planning

Elder law involves legal strategies that safeguard the rights and well-being of older adults. Assessing options and preparing for possible long-term medical needs are essential components of elder law.


A will is a legal document articulating your wishes regarding asset distribution and the care of your minor children or dependents after you die. It is a foundational component of any estate plan.


Trusts are legal entities that hold and manage assets for the benefit of other individuals or entities. They can offer you advantages such as probate avoidance and greater privacy.

Living Trusts

A living trust allows you to place assets in a trust while you’re still alive. This type of trust can simplify the estate administration process and allow your estate to bypass probate.

Estate, Gift, and Income Tax Planning

Planning for estate, gift, and income taxes is vital for preserving your assets. Strategies to minimize tax liabilities through gifts, charitable contributions, deductions, and other financial tactics are a significant part of this planning.

Financial Planning

Financial planning focuses on managing your assets, investments, and debts to maximize your wealth, ensuring you have enough resources now and in the future.

Retirement Planning

Retirement planning, which aligns closely with estate planning, involves setting up pension plans, 401(k)s, and other savings options to ensure financial security once you stop working.

Medicaid Planning

Medicaid planning is the process of arranging your finances in a way that helps you qualify for Medicaid while maintaining your wealth.

Planning to Leave Assets to Loved Ones in a Way That Protects the Assets

Creating a solid estate plan means more than just distributing your assets. It also involves protecting those assets for your intended beneficiaries.

Assets from Divorce, Creditors, Spendthrifts, and Substance Abuse

Careful planning can protect your assets from being lost to divorce settlements, creditors, or imprudent spending. Using specific trusts or legal strategies can insulate your legacy from these potential pitfalls and ensure assets go to your intended beneficiaries.

Business Succession Plans

If you own a business in Rye Brook, succession planning is essential. Deciding who will take over the reins and how transitions will occur can save your business from dissolution and protect its value for your beneficiaries.

Special Needs Family Members

Planning for family members with special needs requires a nuanced approach to maintain their long-term care, eligibility for public benefits, and overall financial stability.

  • Supplemental Needs Trusts – This is a specific type of trust designed to use third-party or inherited dollars to enhance the quality of life for a beneficiary, over and above any government benefits. These funds do not count toward a beneficiary’s resource limits for government programs, allowing them to remain eligible for these benefits.
  • Special Needs Trusts – This is a specific type of trust designed to use an individual’s own assets to enhance his/her life. The assets held in these trusts do not count toward a beneficiary’s resource limits for government programs, allowing them to remain eligible for these benefits.
  • Supported Decision-Making –Supported decision-making agreements allow individuals with special needs to make their own life choices with the support of trusted advisors. This preserves their autonomy while ensuring they are making informed decisions.
  • 17-A Guardianship –In New York, a 17-A guardianship can be established to protect an adult with developmental or intellectual disabilities. It allows a guardian to make decisions for a person who is not legally competent to make those decisions themselves.

Charitable Gifting Plans

Charitable gifting as part of your estate plan can serve dual purposes: it can fulfill your philanthropic desires and offer attractive tax benefits. Different gifting strategies, such as donor-advised funds or charitable trusts, can make your philanthropy even more impactful.

What Are Other Elements of a Successful Estate Plan?

Wills and trusts often take center stage in discussions about estate planning. But it’s essential not to overlook other planning instruments that can round out your comprehensive estate plan, such as:

  • Advance directivesAdvance directives are legal documents such as a health care proxy, a power of attorney, and a disposition of remains. A Health Care Proxy appoints someone you choose to make medical decisions (including end-of-life decisions) for you. A Power of Attorney will allow a trusted family member or friend to handle your financial and/or legal matters. This can be helpful if you face an illness or injury or you lack mental capacity. With life care planning, your family has the guidance and tools necessary to make financial and health care decisions when you cannot do so.
  • Guardianship –Establishing guardianship requires appointing a responsible individual to care for your minor children or dependent adults if you become incapacitated or die. Designating a guardian in advance protects the well-being of those who rely on you for care and decision-making.
  • Probate, Estate, and Trust Administration –Comprehensive estate planning can allow your loved ones to sidestep the often lengthy and costly probate process. A well-designed estate or trust plan can also streamline administration for trustees, executors, and beneficiaries.

How Much Does an Estate Plan Cost?

The cost of an estate plan can vary widely depending on your unique needs and the complexity of your finances. Basic wills and powers of attorney are often relatively inexpensive to prepare. But if your needs are more complex — such as requiring trusts, business succession plans, or specialized tax planning — the costs can increase accordingly.

Some attorneys charge flat fees for certain services, while others bill hourly. Discussing fees upfront and getting an estimated cost based on your circumstances is essential. While the cost might seem like a significant investment, you can’t put a price on the peace of mind and financial security that come with a well-planned estate.

How Can a Rye Brook, NY, Estate Planning Attorney Help?

When you work with a seasoned estate planning attorney from Amoruso & Amoruso LLP, we will:

  • Identify and inventory all your estate assets
  • Recommend tailored estate planning strategies
  • Advise you on the selection of executors, trustees, or guardians
  • Create your will and update it as needed
  • Establish different types of trusts to suit your needs
  • Advise you on tax-efficient methods for asset distribution
  • Prepare advance medical directives
  • Offer legal guidance on long-term care and Medicaid planning
  • Facilitate family discussions about estate planning
  • Develop and draft business succession plans
  • Recommend charitable gifting strategies
  • Prepare powers of attorney for financial and legal matters
  • Suggest and implement probate avoidance techniques
  • Update beneficiary designations on insurance and retirement accounts
  • Facilitate the transfer of assets into a trust
  • Provide counsel on estate and trust administration matters

The stakes in estate planning are incredibly high. Do-it-yourself estate planning templates exist, but beware — they provide a one-size-fits-all approach that won’t capture the unique nuances of your personal and financial situation. An oversight or misinterpretation could lead to unintended consequences, such as financial strain or disputes among loved ones. A Rye Brook estate planning attorney from Amoruso & Amoruso LLP can provide the tailored, comprehensive approach you deserve.

Contact an Experienced Estate Planning Lawyer in Rye Brook, NY, Today

sreelekha and michaelIt’s never too early to start estate planning, but it can be too late. Reach out to Amoruso & Amoruso LLP today to learn how a Rye Brook estate planning lawyer can assemble a comprehensive estate plan that’s best for you. We can advise on an existing estate plan if you’d like a second review. Contact us today to get started.