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Michael E. O’Connor - Of Counsel

Michael E. O’Connor

Of Counsel
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Michael E. O’Connor is Of Counsel at Costello, Cooney & Fearon. He joined the Firm in 2015.

Michael, a storied and experienced professional, focuses predominantly on trust and estate planning, trust and estate administration, elder law, and providing strategies for federal and state estate tax and income tax matters. Michael works with a variety of clients from individuals looking to maximize their estate holdings, to estates looking to protect assets from being acquired by end-of-life care costs. Michael developed strategies for navigating disputes that may arise in Surrogate’s Court for estate matters and prepares applications for Court and accountings for wills and trusts.

Michael is also an adjunct professor at Cornell University’s Cornell Law School in estate planning. He regularly participates in community educational, TV and radio programs on estate planning issues and has written for local publications on the subject. Prior to joining the Firm, Michael was a partner at two other regional law firms.

Education


Syracuse University College of Law
1974
State University of New York at Buffalo
1970

Admissions


New York
The Supreme Court of the United States

Speaking Engagements & Publications


"Estate Planning and Will Drafting"
Author
Warren's Heaton on New York Estate Practice
Contributing Author
New York State Bar Journal
Author
"US Savings Bonds in the Estate"
"Generation Skipping Tax-Questions and Answers for the Estate Planner"
"There's a Reason It's A POWER of Attorney"
LexisNexis
Statutory Commentaries Author
New York State Bar Association
Speaker, various topics including
Contested Estates and Fiduciary Income Taxation Education Program
Will Drafting
Use of Trusts in Nursing Home Planning
Estate Settlement
Valuation of Business Interests
Estate Programs in Real Property Titles
Business Interests
Fiduciary Income Tax
Generation Skipping Tax
Use of Trusts and Gifts in Estate Planning
New York Society of CPAs
Speaker, various topics
Central New York CPA Club
Speaker, various topics
National Business Insitute
Speaker, various topics
Estate Planning Council of CNY
Speaker, various topics
Estate Planning Council of the Capital District
Speaker, various topics
Association of Real Estate Appraisers
Speaker, various topics

Professional Organizations & Community Involvement


American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTECT)
Fellow, Former State Chair
Estate Planning Council of Central New York
Member, Former President
Syracuse University Tax Institute
Director
Central New York Community Foundation
Former President
Aurora of CNY, Inc.
Former President

Memberships


Onondaga County Bar Association
Former Board Member
Former Chair, Estate Section
New York State Bar Association
Former Chair, Committee on Continuing Legal Education (Former Chair, Publications Sub-Committee)
Former Chair, Trust and Estates Section
Former Chair, Elder Law Section
Former Member, House of Delegates
Former Member, Committee on Specialization
American Bar Association

Awards


Best Lawyers
Previous "Lawyer of the Year" for Trusts and Estates in Syracuse
2022
Super Lawyers®
2007-2021
Who's Who In American Law
Included Attorney
Who's Who In America
Included Attorney