Practice Groups

Personal, Family & Business Planning

Estate Planning

Before any planning begins, our trusts and estates lawyers help our clients evaluate their unique circumstances, both personal and financial, and the individual goals they want to achieve.  We then create a balanced estate plan that is tailored to each client’s individual needs.  For some, this can be as simple as a will or living trust that passes everything to a spouse or children. For others, the process is more complex as we integrate sophisticated tax planning into the personal estate plan.

We take an active approach in preserving each client’s wealth by developing innovative plans that minimize income, gift, estate and generation-skipping transfer taxes and by structuring plans based on income tax consequences.

Throughout the estate planning process, we remain mindful of the difficulties in parting with assets during life and strive to help ease this concern so that each client can achieve tax benefits yet still provide for personal concerns. Some tools and techniques often used for our clients are:

  • Defective Grantor Trusts
  • Non-Grantor Irrevocable Trusts
  • Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts (“ILITs”)
  • Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (“GRATs”)
  • Charitable Remainder Trusts (“CRTs”)
  • Charitable Lead Trusts (“CLTs”)
  • §2503(c) Minors Trusts
  • Supplemental Needs Trusts (“SNTs”)
  • Revocable Living Trusts
  • Spousal Limited Access Trusts (“SLATs”)
  • Qualified Personal Residence Trusts (“QPRTs”)
  • Family Limited Partnerships and LLCs
  • Private Foundations
  • Installment Sales

When a charitable entity is created, our focus shifts from personal planning to organizational representation. Forming and administering a charitable entity requires great detail to tax, regulatory, and other state law requirements. We also are proficient in preparing gift tax returns.


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