Many New Yorkers retire in Florida, and many others choose to spend the winter months there while maintaining a residence in New York. As part-time New Yorkers and part-time Floridians, retirees have the best of both worlds. However, living in two different states can present certain complications when it comes to estate planning and elder law.
One important consideration is where your legal residence will be which can be important for purposes of estate taxes. Where you spend the most time may not be as critical as where you are registered to vote, what state issued your driver's license, and what address you list on tax documents.
Your will and any trusts should be tied to the state where you are a legal resident. However, if you own real estate in another state, you should have your estate planning attorney make sure that you do not need additional documents to transfer the property when you die or to manage it if you become incapacitated.
It is also important to make sure that documents such as a living will and health care power of attorney are valid in both states. If you happen to be traveling through another state and are hospitalized, out-of-state documents will probably not cause a problem. However, if you spend a significant amount of time in another state, it is advisable to be sure that such documents comply with the laws of both states. Also, if you spend a good deal of time in a state far away from close family members, you may want to consider naming a local family member or trusted friend in health documents, so that someone can get to a hospital quickly in the event of an emergency.
Littman Krooks is well-positioned to help you with these matters. Because so many of our clients live in New York and Florida, we have partnered with Solkoff Legal, P.A. a leading Florida elder law firm, to offer superior estate planning and elder law services to residents of both states.
To read more about our alliance with Solkoff Legal...click here.
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