Michael E. O'Connor
Mr. O’Connor is of counsel to Costello, Cooney & Fearon, PLLC. He graduated from State University of New York at Buffalo (B.A., 1970) and Syracuse University College of Law (JD, 1974). He is a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) and its past state chairman. He is a member of the New York State Bar Association and is past chair of its 5,000+ member Trust & Estates Section. He has also acted as chairman of Elder Law Section, been a member of the House of Delegates, served as chairman of the Committee on Continuing Legal Education of the New York State Bar Association. He has been selected by Best Lawyers and Super Lawyers for many years and was recently selected Lawyer of the Year in Trusts and Estates. He is also included in Who’s Who in American Law and Who’s Who in America.
He is currently an adjunct professor at Cornell University School of Law, teaching a course in Estate Planning. He has been an adjunct professor of taxation in the Syracuse University School of Law master’s program. He has acted as chairman of state-wide New York State Bar Association continuing education programs for attorneys on contested estates and fiduciary income taxation. He has been moderator and lecturer on New York State Bar Association programs on will drafting, use of trusts in nursing home planning, estate settlement, valuation of business interests, estate problems in real property titles, business interests, fiduciary income tax, generation skipping tax, use of trusts and gifts in estate planning and numerous other topics.
Mr. O'Connor has spoken, moderated and written for programs sponsored by the New York Society of CPAs, Central New York CPA Club, National Business Institute, Estate Planning Council of CNY, Estate Planning Council of the Capital District and Association of Real Estate Appraisers. He has authored articles including, “US Savings Bonds in the Estate,” “Generation Skipping Tax-Questions and Answers for the Estate Planner” and “There’s a Reason It’s a POWER of Attorney” (New York State Bar Journal). He is a contributing author to Warrens Heaton on New York Estate Practice and has authored numerous statutory commentaries for LexisNexis Publishing. He is editor-in-chief of the book, “Estate Planning and Will Drafting.” He is also the author of a document assembly program for lawyers for Lexis Nexis and the New York State Bar Association.
As a member of the Onondaga County Bar Association, he has chaired its committee on estates and surrogates court and been a member of its board of directors. He is a member and past president of The Central New York Estate Planning Council. He is also a director of the Syracuse University Tax Institute. Additionally, he is past board chair of the Central New York Community Foundation and Aurora of CNY, Inc. Mr. O'Connor has participated in numerous community educational programs, TV and radio broadcast programs on estate planning issues as well as written for local publications on the subject.