County Surrogate Offers Free Seminar On Wills & Estates

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Union County Surrogate James S. LaCorte (credit: Jim Lowney/County of Union)

Union County Surrogate James S. LaCorte (credit: Jim Lowney/County of Union)

UNION COUNTY – Union County seniors and their families will have an opportunity to receive reliable guidance on wills, estates and related matters, at a free seminar conducted by County Surrogate James S. LaCorte on Tuesday Oct. 29, at 2 p.m. The seminar will be held in the auditorium at the Union County Trailside Nature and Science Center, 452 New Providence Road in Mountainside.

As part of the seminar, a representative from the Freeholder Board will also be present to explain the new Union County Prescription Drug Discount Card.

“Settling an estate has become increasingly difficult, as the banking community and their providers impose new rules covering tax forms, leases, reverse mortgages, safe deposit boxes and custodial accounts,” said LaCorte. “This seminar is designed to answer your questions and help to make the process works smoothly for Union County families.”

The seminar also includes a full range of topics related to Probate matters, including banking, estate taxes, joint tenants, surviving spouses, and right of survivorship.

“Spouses and children who assume that everything held in trust passes to the survivor without going through probate, but that may not always be true. The contract between you and the provider, such as a bank or mortgage, also plays a key role in settling estates,” said LaCorte.

In addition to reviewing the importance of having a valid will, LaCorte will also discuss the duties of an Executor, and explain the difference between Power of Attorney and Advanced Directive.

He will also field questions related to real estate issues and the transfer of assets from the decedent’s name.

James S. LaCorte has been Surrogate of Union County since January 1, 2000. He has been a member of the Member of the Surrogate Judiciary Liaison Committee since 2008 and is a Former Section Chief of the Surrogates Section of the Constitutional Officers Association, State of New Jersey. In 2009 he received the William J. McCloud Award for outstanding service in the protection of families in Union County. Prior to his election to Surrogate, his practice focused on probate law and general equity as well as criminal and civil Matters.

The Union County Surrogate is a New Jersey State constitution office responsible for administering the Probate of Wills, Appointment of Estate Administrators, and Appointment of Guardians for minors. The Surrogate is also responsible for the Administration of Adoptions, and for filing Superior Court, Chancery Division, and Probate Part Complaints. In addition, the Surrogate is the Judge and Clerk of the Surrogate’s Court and the Deputy Clerk of the Superior Court Chancery Division, Probate Part.

The seminar is expected to last approximately one hour, and pre-registration is not required. For more information on the seminar and all other County Surrogate programs and services, call 908-527-2480 or visit

To contact the Trailside Nature and Science Center, call 908-789-3670 or visit

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