Trusts and Estates Law Section

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    Welcome to the Trusts and Estates Law Section The benefits of your membership and active participation with the Trusts and Estates Law Section cannot be overstated. You will profit not just from the educational component offered by the outstanding Continuing Legal Education Committee, but also from the congeniality and friendships that endure throughout your career.
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    Trusts & Estates Law Section Annual Meeting Program - January 25, 2017
  • Upcoming Events
    • Trusts and Estates Section Meeting

      Under New York’s MCLE rule, this program has been approved for a total of 3.0 credit hours (3.0 Areas of Professional Practice). This program will NOT qualify for credit for newly-admitted attorneys because it is not a basic practical skills program. 

       9:00 a.m.-12: p.m.   Grand Ballroom East, 3rd Floor


      SECTION CHAIR: Magdalen Gaynor, Esq.  Law Office of Magdalen Gaynor, White Plains, NY

      Georgiana James Slade, Esq., Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP, New York, NY 

      9:00 a.m.-9:10 a.m.
      Welcoming Remarks:
       Magdalen Gaynor, Esq. Trusts and Estates Law Section Chair 
      Program Introduction: 
      Georgia James Slade, Esq., Program Chair

      9:10-10:00 a.m. 
      In Case of Incapacity: Representing the Incapacitated Person-“Ethical Challenges in Representing Individuals Whose Capacity is Diminishing” 
      What happens when a lawyer suspects that a current or prospective client may be suffering from diminishing capacity?  Does the lawyer have a duty to assess client capacity and, if so, how is this done? 
      This presentation will discuss medical and legal assessments of capacity and will examine the ethical challenges lawyers may face when representing individuals whose capacity is in question.
      Speaker:  Mary F. Radford
      Fines Knowles Professor of Law, Georgia State University of Law
      Atlanta, GA

      10:00 a.m.-10:50 a.m.
      During Incapacity: Guardianship 101 and Other Options
      Is Guardianship the Answer?” -- This presentation will provide an overview of proceedings for appointment of a guardian under Article 81 of the Mental Hygiene Law, the rules which govern administration of the guardianship and the process of terminating the guardianship after the death of the incapacitated person.   Strategies which may avoid the need for appointment of a guardian will also be discussed.   
      Speaker: Frances M. Pantaleo, Esq.
      Bleakley Platt & Schmidt LLP
      White Plains, NY 

      10:50 a.m.-11:00 a.m.-Refreshment Break with Exhibitors

      11:10 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
      After Incapacity: The Fall - Out:  Defending Actions of the Alleged “Incapacitated” and Legislative Initiatives
      Drawing from the facts of Astor, Clark, Redstone, and other cases of interest, this presentation will address some of the more common judicial proceedings in which a decedent’s capacity is at issue.  Among the topics addressed will be contested probate proceedings, proceedings to determine the validity of lifetime trusts, proceedings involving lifetime gifts, and proceedings involving the execution of other documents, including powers of attorney, deeds, and beneficiary designations, as well as applicable presumptions and burdens of proof.  This presentation will also briefly discuss legislative initiatives designed to protect against the abuse of those suffering from a lack of capacity or diminished capacity, including elder abuse.

      Eric W. Penzer, Esq.
      Farrell Fritz, P.C.
      Uniondale, NY  

      12:00 p.m.-Program Concludes

      12:00 p.m.-12:45 p.m.- Reception, Grand Central Foyer, 3rd Floor

      12:45 p.m.-2:15 p.m.-Luncheon –Grand Ballroom East, 3rd Floor

      Luncheon Speaker: James B.Stewart, Esq., The New York Times, NYC

      “Sex, Lies and Videotape: the Corporate Spectacle of Sumner Redstone”

      Pursuant to ARTICLE IV, Section 1 of the Section’s bylaws, the Nominating Committee unanimously recommends for election at the Section’s Annual Meeting, the following Executive Committee Nominees (*indicates nominee standing for election):
      Sharon L. Wick, Buffalo
      Chairperson –Elect
      Natalia Murphy, New York City
      Cristine Cioffi, Niskayuna
      Robert Harper, Uniondale

      District Representatives: 
      First District
      Second District
      Third District
      Fourth District
      Fifth District
      *Sixth District
      Seventh District
      *Eighth District
      Ninth District
      Tenth District
      Eleventh District
      Twelfth District
      *Thirteenth District
      (*indicates districts up for election)

      Respectfully submitted, 

      Magdalen Gaynor, White Plains
      Marion Hancock Fish, Syracuse
      Ronald Weiss, New York City


      IMPORTANT NOTICE–PARTIAL CREDIT FOR PROGRAM SEGMENTS NOT ALLOWED: Under the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board Regulations and Guidelines, attendees at CLE programs cannot get MCLE credit for a program segment (typically, a lecture or panel, of which there are usually several in a program) unless they are present for the entire segment. Those who arrive late, depart early, or are absent for any portion of the  segment WILL NOT receive credit for that program segment.

      Discounts and Scholarships: New York State Bar Association members and non-members may apply for a discount or scholarship to attend this program, based on financial hardship. This discount applies to the educational portion of the program only. Under this policy, any member of our Association or non-member who has a genuine basis for their hardship, if approved, can receive a discount or scholarship, depending on the circumstances. Request for discounts or scholarships must be received prior to January 13th, 2017. For more details, please contact Lisa Bataille in writing at New York State Bar Association, One Elk Street, Albany, New York 12207 or

      Accommodations for Persons with Disabilities:  NYSBA welcomes participation by individuals with disabilities. NYSBA is committed to complying with all applicable laws that prohibit discrimination against individuals on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of its goods, services, programs, activities, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations. To request auxiliary aids or services or if you have any questions regarding accessibility, please contact Lisa Bataille at 518-487-5680, or

      For overnight room accommodations, please call the New York Hilton Midtown at 1-800-445-8667 and identify yourself as a member of the New York State Bar Association. Room rates are $260.00 per night plus taxes for single and double occupancy.� Reservations must be made by Monday, December 16, 2016. You also can reserve your overnight room on the web at

      For questions about this specific program, please contact Lisa Bataille at 518-487-5680. For registration questions only, please call the Member Resource Center at 800-582-2452. Fax registration form to 518-463-5993.


    • Trusts and Estates Section Lunch

      Grand Ballroom East 

      Register Here or Download The Registration Form Here

      Download a table reservation form

    • Trusts and Estates Section Offsite Reception

      Trusts & Estates Law Section Reception
      Wednesday, January 25, 2017

      6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.

      The University Club 
      1 West 54th Street (corner of 54th Street and Fifth Avenue)

      Sponsored by: Doyle's New York and Brown Brother's Harriman

      Pre-registration is required Register Here

      Reception flyer

    • Trusts and Estates Law Section 2017 Spring Meeting - Save the Date!

      Trusts and Estates Law Section 2017 Spring Meeting

      Save the Date! 

      May 11-13, 2017

      JW Marriott New Orleans
      614 Canal Street
      New Orleans, LA 70130

  • T&E Law Section Newsletter


    The Trusts and Estates Law Section Newsletter features peer-written, substantive articles relating to the practice of trusts and estates law on various topics including estate planning, will drafting, tax issues, guardianship, power of attorney, and probates. Recent New York State Decisions, Case Notes—Recent New York State Surrogate's and Supreme Court Decisions, and a Florida Update are featured in each issue. The Trusts and Estates Law Section Newsletter is published quarterly by the Trusts and Estates Law Section and distributed to Section Members free of charge.

    Read Now

  • Status of Pending Legislation