Cozen O’Connor: Private Client Services

Private Client Services

Featured Publication:

SECURE ACT — Notable Changes to Retirement Plan Benefits [Alert]

Dan Levine and Michael Corgan discuss how the SECURE Act may impact your estate plan.

More

Cozen O’Connor’s Private Client Services Practice assists clients in all areas relating to wealth management, wealth transfer, philanthropic giving, and business succession planning. We counsel high net worth families and individuals both in the United States and abroad, and assist successful business owners and entrepreneurs. We provide advice on trusts, estates, tax strategies, business strategies, and estate disputes.

Decisions about passing wealth to the next generation or restructuring a closely held business involve deeply personal considerations about family, duty, and legacy. Our attorneys are not simply legal technicians — they are trusted family advisors. They provide steadfast counsel through life’s most significant transitions so that clients’ goals are realized.

Fundamental to this work is a high-level technical understanding of the tax code, trust and estates laws, securities regulations, and accounting procedures. The group’s attorneys bring intellectual rigor and perspective to the practice, which ensures that our clients are able to capitalize on opportunities and avoid unanticipated complications. We are adept at identifying tax-favorable solutions that fit the needs of each family.  

Cozen O’Connor also serves as litigation counsel to select clients in complex or high-value disputes. We represent executors, trustees, institutional fiduciaries, and beneficiaries in estate and probate litigation, will contests, trust disputes, and estate-related commercial litigation. Our aim is to achieve mutually agreeable negotiated solutions, but our abilities extend to successful trial advocacy, when necessary.

The group has more experienced private client services attorneys than almost any large law firm in the country, including numerous members who have been practicing for more than 30 years and a group of talented young lawyers. Our attorneys pair legal acumen with keen social intelligence. They know the law, and they know people. Establishing a sense of mutual trust and respect is critically important in the private client services field because of the personal nature of the issues involved. Our clients can talk in confidence, and we listen and advise without judgment.

 

SERVICES

  • Structure a full-range of trusts and wealth transfer instruments, including grantor-retained annuity trusts, asset protection trusts, insurance trusts, dynasty trusts, qualified personal residence trusts, grantor trusts, revocable trusts, special needs trusts, and private annuities
  • Advise business owners about succession management, asset protection, recapitalizations, gift programs, life insurance, benefit programs, and sales or restructuring opportunities
  • Establish family limited partnerships and limited liability companies
  • Further philanthropic goals through charitable lead and remainder trusts
  • Form private foundations and provide ongoing tax, operations, and compliance counseling
  • Handle all phases of estate and trust administration, including probate, taxes, and asset distribution
  • Draft powers of attorney and living wills
  • Advise clients on legal rights and wealth management around major life events
  • Counsel multinational clients on asset protection strategies in the United States and abroad
  • Represent executors, trustees, and beneficiaries in state and federal courts in disputes involving wills, trusts, and estates, including trust reformations and terminations, cy-pres and incapacity hearings, accounting proceedings, and tax controversies

CLIENTS

We advise families and individuals with substantial wealth both in the United States and abroad. We work closely with business owners and entrepreneurs.

TEAM

The members of Cozen O’Connor’s Private Client Services Practice are among the most respected in their field and include four fellows of the invitation-only American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. Our attorneys have been asked to serve on state orphans’ court rules committees and estate law advisory committees, and have been elected to chair city and state bar association probate and trust law sections. The team includes a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners and seven attorneys with LL.M.s in tax law. Several senior attorneys regularly lecture and publish articles about trust and estate law and related tax issues.

Very few large law firms in the United States have maintained trust and estate practices of the size and caliber of ours. Rather than cede our practice to the boutiques, Cozen O’Connor remains invested in the private client field. First, our attorneys serve as primary business advisers to numerous families with successful closely held multigenerational enterprises. Second, we believe private clients benefit from working with a full-service firm. Because of the nature of the relationship our attorneys enjoy with their clients, we are often the first point of contact on a huge range of legal matters, from probate procedures to patent infringement, corporate transactions to real estate transactions. As a full-service firm, Cozen O’Connor is able to act quickly to provide seamless and effective legal counsel.

Experience

Publications

SECURE ACT — Notable Changes to Retirement Plan Benefits [Alert]

January 23, 2020

Dan Levine and Michael Corgan discuss how the SECURE Act may impact your estate plan.

Tax Update: The Impact of Newly Published Regulations on the Estate and Gift Tax Laws [Alert]

December 16, 2019

Alexia Fishman discusses recently published regulations impacting estate planning in 2019 and beyond.

Tax Update: Big Changes in the Estate and Gift Tax Laws Require Attention

January 22, 2018

Robert Friedman and Alexia Fishman discuss important changes to the estate and gift tax rules that likely will have an impact on your estate plan.

Five Estate Planning Tips of Which Benjamin Franklin Would Approve [New Jersey Business Magazine]

October 02, 2017

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Private Client Services Practice Group, discusses five estate planning tips that can minimize the legal and logistical upheaval that death may cause a family in New Jersey Business Magazine.

Trump's Tax Reform Proposal Answers Questions but Raises Many More [The Legal Intelligencer]

May 11, 2017

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Private Client Services Practice Group, discusses President Trump's tax reform proposal in The Legal Intelligencer.

Repeal of Estate Tax: Practical Questions in Uncertain Times [The Legal Intelligencer]

February 14, 2017

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Private Client Services Practice Group, discusses the potential repeal of estate tax in The Legal Intelligencer.

New Jersey Repeals Estate Tax [Private Client Services Alert]

October 21, 2016

Judd A. Serotta discusses new legislation in New Jersey that eliminates its estate tax as of January 1, 2018. Under the new law, New Jersey will tax all assets of a decedent’s estate in excess $2 million for deaths occurring on or after January 1, 2017, and the tax will be eliminated entirely for deaths occurring on or after January 1, 2018.

Events & Seminars

Past Events

Power of Attorney Disputes

April 30, 2019 - Mechanicsburg PA

2018 Family Business Conference

October 04, 2018 - Philadelphia, PA

Baker Tilly Estate and Trust Conference 2018

June 01, 2018 - Society Hill, PA

Total Impact Conference 2018

April 27, 2018 - Philadelphia, PA

The Power of Creative Planned Giving

February 15, 2018 - Media, PA

International Estate Planning

June 23, 2016 - Edison, NJ

Asset Protection Trusts

February 25, 2016 - San Diego, CA

Introduction to Estate Planning 2015

December 08, 2015 - New York, NY

The Impact of ATRA on Marital Deduction Planning

September 19, 2013 - New York, NY

AIA 2012 Annual Conference

May 01, 2012 - Las Vegas, NV

In The News

Cozen O’Connor Recognized As a Best Law Firm in 24 Practice Areas Nationwide, 106 Practice Areas Regionally

November 05, 2019

The U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations and peer review from leading attorneys in their field.

Amanda DiChello Named a 2019 "Women of Distinction" by the Philadelphia Business Journal

October 31, 2019

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Private Client Services Practice Group, has been selected as a Women of Distinction by the Philadelphia Business Journal.

Tom Petty's Estate Is In Chaos—And That's With A Will

June 05, 2019

Amanda DiChello discusses ongoing disputes with rock star Tom Petty’s estate in an article in Financial Advisor.

Most People Keep Important Data Online. Pa. Doesn't Have a Law Yet on How to Handle Those Accounts When Someone Dies

May 21, 2019

Amanda DiChello explains the challenges of dealing with digital assets of the deceased in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

When Private Fights Over Millions Become Public (Things Get Ugly)

February 08, 2019

Amanda DiChello explains why an increasing number of estate disputes among family members are leading to legal action in The New York Times.

Family Discord May Break Up a Valuable Art Collection

February 05, 2019

Amanda DiChello discusses a series of lawsuits involving art heiress Belinda Neumann-Donnelly and her family in an article on WealthManagement.com.

126 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 22, 2018

One hundred twenty-six Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 20 of the firm’s national offices have been selected for inclusion in the 2018 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

3 Tax Breaks That May Be Better in the Long Run

August 10, 2018

Amanda DiChello, a member of the firm’s Private Client Services Practice, discusses the advantages and disadvantages of the new estate and gift tax exemption in The New York Times.

IRS mulls rules for estates and trusts after tax law

July 26, 2018

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O’Connor’s Private Client Services Practice, discusses the IRS and the Treasury’s plan to issue regulations around estates and non-grantor trusts under the new tax code in Accounting Today.

Trustees Grapple with Balancing ESG Investing and Fiduciary Duties

June 29, 2018

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor’s Private Client Services Practice, discusses trustees’ growing interest in sustainable investing in Private Wealth.

What Can Advisors Learn from the Stan Lee Elder Abuse Allegations?

June 21, 2018

Amanda DiChello, a member in the firm’s Private Client Services Practice, is quoted in a wealthmanagement.com article discussing financial elder abuse and ways in which advisors can help prevent it.

Amanda K. DiChello Elected as Secretary of the Pennsylvania Bar Association Real Property, Probate, and Trust Law Section

June 12, 2018

Amanda K. DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Private Client Services Practice Group, has been elected to serve a one-year term as the Secretary of the Real Property, Probate, and Trust Law Section of the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

Fifty-four Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named 2018 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

June 12, 2018

Super Lawyers has named 54 Cozen O'Connor attorneys to its 2018 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers and Rising Stars lists.

Roger Corman’s Sons Sue to Block Sale of Film Library

April 10, 2018

Amanda DiChello, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Private Client Services Practice Group, discussed in Wealth Management the recent lawsuit involving Roger and Brian Corman.

2018 U.S. News & World Report – Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms" Ranks Cozen O’Connor

February 01, 2018

In the 2018 U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms, Cozen O’Connor is ranked nationally in 17 practice areas and regionally in 64 practice areas.

Private Client Services Group Continues Expansion

January 22, 2018

Marc Selden Brings to the Firm a Solid Track Record in Asset Protection Planning

Attorney Amanda K. DiChello Joins Cozen O’Connor’s Private Client Services Practice Group

January 02, 2018

Amanda DiChello will join the firm’s Philadelphia office as a member and will counsel high and ultra-high net-worth individuals and families on estate and trust administration and planning, as well as estate, trust, and fiduciary-related litigation.

Cozen O’Connor welcomes Melissa Grossman to its Private Client Services Group

September 14, 2017

The Group Assists Clients in All Areas of Wealth Management, Wealth Transfer, Philanthropy, and Business Succession Planning.

100 Cozen O’Connor Lawyers Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 23, 2017

Lawyers were selected for inclusion in the 2018 edition based on a rigorous peer-review that has been developed and defined for more than 30 years.