Go to main navigation
562 City Island Avenue, City Island, NY 10464
Free Initial Consultation 888.368.4329 888.368.4329

Frequently Asked Questions on New York Wills and Probate Law

Individuals and families often face complicated legal processes around wills and estates, usually at the stressful times preceding or following the death of a close relative. Working out important details in advance with a New York wills lawyer is highly advised to forestall disputes and unnecessary expenses later.

After someone dies, the structure of laws in the state virtually requires you to work with a New York probate lawyer. This can be the same attorney who helped the decedent write his or her will.

As attorney Cormac McEnery, Esq. details in the following answers to frequently asked questions about wills and probate, the benefits of proper legal representation are clear throughout the process.

How is a New York wills lawyer beneficial to decedents and their beneficiaries?
Can a do-it-yourself will suffice for an uncomplicated estate?
What is probate?
Why is an attorney necessary for the probate process?
How else are attorneys useful to wills and probate?

New York Probate and Wills Lawyer

Cormac McEnery has more than 30 years of experience handling probate and estate administration, estate tax, estate litigation, estate planning, elder law, and Medicaid planning. The firm serves clients from New York City (Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens), Westchester County, and Nassau and Suffolk Counties. To set up a free legal consultation, contact our Bronx probate lawyer at 1-888-368-4329.

How is a New York wills lawyer beneficial to decedents and their beneficiaries?
To anyone with assets or property, or the responsibilities of children or guardianship, a well-executed will is highly recommended for many reasons. Foremost among them is that without a will, the laws of New York State—rather than the wishes of the deceased—determine what happens to the assets of someone who dies intestate. This often requires heirs to hire lawyers to sort out inheritances, which often leads to conflict.

Can a do-it-yourself will suffice for an uncomplicated estate?
While it might be possible to establish a will by means of a do-it-yourself document purchased on the Internet, New York State laws make this inadvisable in most situations. The first thing to consider is whether there are minor children, as guardianship should be established for their sake. With a do-it-yourself will, larger legal expenses might arise after your demise if the will is poorly written, if there is family conflict over the terms of the will, or if the legality of the will can be challenged.

What is probate?
Probate is a process where an administrator is named to oversee the property of the deceased, and where creditors are properly notified of the death and are allowed to file claims to assets. There are several complex requirements in New York probate law such that lawyers are almost always engaged.

Why is an attorney necessary for the probate process?
Some estates and wills are simple, such as when a single heir receives a home, as well as money in a savings account. These present far fewer challenges than more complex situations—for example, when multiple properties and assets are divided among multiple heirs. Still, an attorney who works specifically in this area of law can effectively and efficiently help administer settlement of the estate to the optimal benefit of the intended beneficiaries of the decedent.

How else are attorneys useful to wills and probate?
Because many individuals who are working on their wills are reaching advanced years, an attorney with knowledge of elder law—including Medicaid planning, estate litigation, and nursing home issues—can provide additional value to the individual and family.