News & Insights

  • PROPERTY

    What Happens When a Property Owner Dies Without a Will?

    When someone dies without a Will it is known as dying intestate. In this situation, New York intestacy law determines the decedent’s distributees – that is, the individuals entitled to inherit the decedent’s assets. One issue that can cause confusion concerns the rights of distributees when the decedent owns real property. At what point, does … Read more

  • Estate Plan

    Do You Have a Comprehensive Estate Plan That Address All of Your Assets?

    A proper estate plan involves more than just drafting a will. That’s because a will only controls the distribution of what are known as “probate assets.” These are assets that do not have separate beneficiary designations. “Non-probate assets,” which include life insurance, retirement accounts, joint bank accounts, and real property owned “with rights of survivorship,” … Read more

  • Executor or Trustee

    When Can a Difficult Executor or Trustee Be Removed?

    Conflicts between fiduciaries (whether executors or trustees) and beneficiaries are not unusual. For instance, these often occur with trusts of long duration, where the trustee controls a beneficiary’s access to assets which the beneficiary would prefer to have outright. Disputes may also arise among co-executors or co-trustees, especially if they have differing views on how … Read more

  • Notice

    Are You Required to Strictly Comply With Notice Provisions in a Contract?

    In most contracts, there is specific language regarding how and when a notice to the other party are to be sent. For example, the agreement might specify that notice of termination be given to a certain individual, sent by mail, and/or provided at least 30 days in advance of taking an action. The terms of … Read more

  • wrongful death

    Additional Damages for Wrongful Death Due to Nursing Home Misconduct

    Generally, wrongful death actions are governed by Article 5 of the New York Estates Powers and Trusts Law (EPTL). Such lawsuits are usually commenced by the appointed estate representative and only allow recovery of damages for “pecuniary injuries resulting from the decedent’s death to his distributees” or heirs. These may include damages for their loss … Read more

  • The Triumphant Return of Remote Notarization of Legal Documents in New York

    Necessity is the mother of invention, and when the COVID-19 pandemic first emerged in March 2020, the new reality of quarantine and social distancing required changes, and in some cases outright suspension, of a variety of laws and regulations. One new rule put in place at the time allowed remote notarization of legal documents in … Read more

  • Interest

    Lender Loses Accrued Interest Because of its Delay in Foreclosing

    Generally, when a lender forecloses on a loan, it is entitled to the full amount of principal due plus interest. This usually includes “default interest,” which is charged at a substantially higher rate than the loan interest and starts to accrue from the date the borrower is notified of the default. In a recent court … Read more

  • Right To Notice

    Homeowner Has Right To Notice Before Lender Can Foreclose

    Long before COVID, New York law protected homeowners from foreclosure by requiring that lenders take certain steps prior to commencing legal action. One of these steps involves giving advance written right to notice to the homeowner. In a recent decision, a New York appellate court clarified the rules regarding notice and confirmed that lenders must … Read more

  • When is an Employer Liable for an Employee’s Conduct?

    In litigation, it is important to determine not only who did what to whom, and what damage resulted, but also who can be held legally responsible for the conduct. The latter issue commonly arises when an employee causes injury to another party and the suit seeks to hold the employer liable for the employee’s actions. … Read more

  • When Does a Person Have the Legal Capacity to Sign a Will?

    In order for a will to be valid, a person must have “testamentary capacity.” This means they must be considered competent under the law and have the requisite mental ability to understand and execute a will. In most wills, this is not an issue because the decedent had no health issues when signing and the … Read more

Do You Have a Comprehensive Estate Plan That Address All of Your Assets?

Estate Plan

A proper estate plan involves more than just drafting a will. That’s because a will only controls the distribution of what are known as “probate assets.” These are assets that do not have separate beneficiary designations. “Non-probate assets,” which include life insurance, retirement accounts, joint bank accounts, and real property owned “with rights of survivorship,” … Read more

When Can a Difficult Executor or Trustee Be Removed?

Executor or Trustee

Conflicts between fiduciaries (whether executors or trustees) and beneficiaries are not unusual. For instance, these often occur with trusts of long duration, where the trustee controls a beneficiary’s access to assets which the beneficiary would prefer to have outright. Disputes may also arise among co-executors or co-trustees, especially if they have differing views on how … Read more

Homeowner Has Right To Notice Before Lender Can Foreclose

Right To Notice

Long before COVID, New York law protected homeowners from foreclosure by requiring that lenders take certain steps prior to commencing legal action. One of these steps involves giving advance written right to notice to the homeowner. In a recent decision, a New York appellate court clarified the rules regarding notice and confirmed that lenders must … Read more