Rick Watson, former mayor of Morris Township and partner in a New York Law firm, made a presentation on Estate Planning at the well attended H/AREA semi-annual meeting held at the Morristown site in October. Mr. Watson, who is admitted to the bar in both New York and New Jersey, gave a legal overview and outlined the simple approach, viz. “What do you have?” and “What do you want to do with it?” He noted that complications arise in non-traditional family relationships, e.g. gay relationships, single moms, divorces and remarriage, grandchildren with “problems”, etc. Such cases may require special planning involving a variety of trusts which he covered. Overlaid on all of this are complex tax issues and the anticipation of significant changes to tax laws in 2013. Watson offered numerous tips regarding spouse, lawyer, heirs and choice of executor. He also commented on which records to keep and which to save, which gifts to make before end of life, funeral preferences, power of attorney, living wills and other issues. Watson concluded his very informative presentation with the mantra, “Make amends, love your spouse, praise your children”.
As we ran out of handouts at the meeting, Mr. Watson has agreed to send a copy of the handouts to any H/AREA members who request them. He can be reached by mail at Chamberlain, Willi, Ouchterloney and Watson, 575 Eighth Avenue, New York, NY 10018 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. or by phone at 212-267-5355.