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Anne B. Ruffer


Anne B. Ruffer is a partner, chair of the Firm’s Executive Committee and chair of the Trusts and Estates Department at Mackenzie Hughes LLP.  She concentrates her practice in estate planning (wills, trusts, and advanced directives), estate and trust administration, elder law and long-term planning, special needs planning, estate litigation and guardianships, as well as a variety of business related matters.

  • Assists clients with a variety of assets and wealth with their estate planning, including drafting wills, a variety of trusts, advanced directives and beneficiary designations.
  • Assists clients with trust, estate and family asset resolution and disputes, including litigation in Surrogate’s and Supreme Court where necessary.
  • Works with clients in planning for giving to individuals with special needs.
  • Handles all matters regarding transfer of assets on the death of an individual including estate and trust administration.
  • Assists clients in asset preservation planning and Medicaid qualification for entrance into nursing home or home care.
  • Works with clients on related business matters.


  • Chair of the firm’s Trusts and Estates Department
  • Member of the Executive Committee
  • Firm’s Administrative Partner
  • New York State Bar Association (Trusts and Estates and Elder Law Sections and former Elder Law Fifth District Delegate)
  • Onondaga County, American Bar and CNY Women’s Bar Associations
  • Trustee for Vera House Foundation, Inc. and is a regular volunteer at Vera House’s Monday Night Legal Clinic
  • Chair of the CNY Community Foundation’s Professional Advisors Group
  • Member of the Menorah Park Foundation
  • Lectures on the topics of estate planning, asset preservation, guardianship and ethics matters for the New York State Bar Association, Onondaga County Bar Association and private organizations



  • President of the Onondaga County Bar Foundation
  • Chairperson for Vera House Foundation, Inc. and former Major Gifts Committee Chairperson
  • Member of the Arc Guardianship committee
  • President of the Vera House Board of Directors
  • Served as Vera House’s liaison to the United Way
  • Member of the DeWitt Community Library Board of Trustees
  • A Vice-President of Congregation Beth Sholom Chevra-Shas
  • Co-Authored the Tax News column for “Elder Law Attorney,” a publication of the New York State Bar Association
  • Co-Chair of the OCBA Surrogate’s Court Practice Committee
  • Co-Author of New York Practice Guide-Probate and Estate Administration (LexisNexis)
  • Listed annually in the “Super Lawyers New York Upstate Edition” since 2009
  • Recipient of the Onondaga County Bar Association’s Distinguished Pro Bono Award
  • Recipient of New York State Bar Association’s President’s Pro Bono Service Attorney Award
  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Wisconsin, Psychology
  • Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel from 1978 – 1979
  • Juris Doctorate, Syracuse University College of Law, High Honors
  • New York State Bar


Mackenzie Hughes LLP Attorneys Recognized by Super Lawyers

SYRACUSE, NY – Mackenzie Hughes LLP is pleased that eight of its lawyers have been named as Super Lawyers in the 2018 edition of New York Super Lawyers Upstate magazine. The list includes: Stephen T. Helmer, Business & Civil Litigation; Personal Injury & Medical Malpractice; Ami S. Longstreet, Estate Planning & Probate; Elder Law; James…

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Mackenzie Hughes LLP Attorneys Recognized by Super Lawyers

Mackenzie Hughes LLP is pleased to announce Stephen T. Helmer, has been named as one of the Top 50 attorneys in Upstate New York for 2015 in the Super of New York Super Lawyers Upstate magazine. Also included in the 2015 are Elizabeth A. Hartnett, Estate and Probate; ; Ami S. Longstreet, Elder Law; James…

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Marriage: The Supreme Court Case on Same-Sex Couples & Estate Planning for All Married Couples

The recent U.S. Supreme Court Decision which determines Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional has created a flurry of articles in the legal field and in the mainstream media. The following is to provide a summary of planning opportunities that are available to all married persons, including married same-sex couples, and…

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New Legislation and Estate Planning

New Legislation and Estate Planning What is the buzz about the SECURE Act that keeps popping up in news reports, tweets and in your email account?  You are curious to find out but you’ve always been too busy to sit down and read about it. Take a few moments and read on. The SECURE Act…

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Implementing Local Legacy Simply

Anne Ruffer is Chair of the Community Foundation’s Professional Advisor Council.  She wrote this article for the winter edition of Smart Money, a publication of the Central New York Community Foundation, to give some guidance on incorporating charitable giving into estate plans. In 2010, the Central New York Community Foundation commissioned a study on wealth…

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Beneficiary Designation Forms: A Good Estate Plan Is Not Complete Without A Review Of These As Well

Now that you are finally getting around to having your Will prepared or updated, or even considering adding a Revocable Trust to your planning documents, it is also important to plan for those assets that are subject to a document commonly referred to as a beneficiary designation form.  Most commonly, my clients inquire: Doesn’t my…

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