Question: Joe, goodness forbids that something does happen to a family member or one of your loved ones. In the case of a wrongful death or the death of family member, what happens to that individual’s belongings? What planning should take place to insure that the family is protected after that individual dies?
Joe: In my business and in any legal situation, if there is a death, nothing can be done on behalf of the dead person until an estate is formed. That can be done two ways, by operation of statute or by a will. Will means you write one and you plan for bad events. Your plan takes into account your wishes. If you don’t have a will, your estate is governed by the rules of New York State’s laws. It may not be what you like. So it’s like everything else, you need to plan. Sometimes it’s bad things that you need to plan for but it is important.