David J. McCabe

Partner

New York
Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP
787 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10019-6099
T 212 728 8723
F 212 728 9723
dmccabewillkie.com

David J. McCabe is senior partner and Chair of the Private Clients Group.  He has significant experience in all aspects of estate planning and administration, with emphasis on the development of sophisticated plans for high-net-worth individuals and their families.

Dave's practice includes the preparation of complex wills, trust agreements and related instruments, the representation of clients in estate tax and gift tax audits, and general counseling of clients in all phases of the administration of decedents’ estates and trusts.

For more than 35 years, Dave has taken a holistic approach to his work, and he excels at guiding his clients through the complexities of estate planning and estate and trust administration.  At Willkie, he is able to call upon the experience of his colleagues in a myriad of practice areas (alternative investment management, asset management, corporate, litigation, tax, real estate, securities law, executive compensation and intellectual property) to address the many issues confronted by his clients.  He works with many single- and multi-family offices to provide comprehensive solutions to the complex issues facing today’s wealthiest families.  Dave takes pride in his and his team’s ability to work collaboratively with a family’s other advisers to craft integrated plans that best serve the needs of each family.  Dave's approach has been tremendously successful for the firm’s clients.  His greatest source of new relationships are referrals from existing clients and their advisers.

Dave also has experience advising clients on international estate planning.  The majority of that work relates to advising non-resident and resident aliens on the U.S. tax aspects of their plans. However, he has often worked with counsel from around the world to resolve multi-jurisdictional issues for families.

In addition to representing families, Dave’s clients include banks and trust companies.  He advises fiduciaries on their duties and responsibilities in managing estates and trusts.  He also advises fiduciaries and beneficiaries in estate and trust litigation matters in Surrogate’s Courts and the Supreme Court of the State of New York.

A growing part of Dave's practice includes the representation of public charities, private foundations and charitable trusts. He has advised directors and trustees of philanthropic organizations on a variety of corporate and tax issues, and has formed numerous private foundations and public charitable entities.

Dave has been repeatedly ranked by Chambers High Net Worth as a leading lawyer in the area of private wealth. Chambers notes that sources highlight Dave is “very knowledgeable,” has “immense experience” and is a “first-rate lawyer” who “understands all sides of an issue and explains it in a very understandable way.” (Chambers HNW 2019). Dave is also consistently ranked by Best Lawyers in America as a leading lawyer in Trusts and Estates.

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Highlights

David J. McCabe is senior partner and Chair of the Private Clients Group.  He has significant experience in all aspects of estate planning and administration, with emphasis on the development of sophisticated plans for high-net-worth individuals and their families.

Selected Professional and Business Activities

Dave is a Fellow of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel and was formerly Chair of the Committee on Trusts, Estates and Surrogate’s Courts of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.  He was also elected to the Legal Board of Trustees of Iona College (2006) and served as Vice Chairman of the Board.

Dave has written and lectured on estate tax planning for high-net-worth individuals and small business owners, and has co-authored "Is Estate Planning Expensive?," Trusts & Estates Magazine (2004), "There But for the Grace…," Trusts & Estates Magazine (2002), "Transfer of Wealth," New York State Bar Association (1993) and New York Limited Liability Companies: A Guide to Law and Practice, West Publishing Company (1995).  He has also appeared on CNN’s Your Money and MSNBC’s Abrams Report as a commentator on various estate planning issues.

Selected Publications and Lectures

Dave has lectured for:

  • Association of the Bar of the City of New York - numerous occasions
  • New York State Bar Association - numerous occasions
  • The New York Archdiocese’s Planned Gifts, Bequests & Endowment Committee - numerous occasions
  • The American Bar Association - numerous occasions
  • Private Client Legal Forum - Villa d'Este Lake Como, Italy
  • American Bar Association Annual Meeting

Additional Information

Selected Memberships and Philanthropic Activities

  • American College of Trusts and Estate Counsel
    - Fellow (2002- )
  • Association of the Bar of the City of New York
    - Member, (1985- )
    - Chair, Committee on Trusts, Estates and Surrogate's Courts (2005-2008)
    - Member, Committee on the Judiciary (2005-2008)
    - Member, Committee on Trusts, Estates and Surrogate’s Courts (1993-95) (2002-2008)
    - Chair, Sub-Committee on Principal and Income Act (1994-95)
    - Member, Sub-Committee on Principal and Income Act (1995-00)
  • New York State Bar Association
    - Member, (1984- )
    - Trusts and Estates Law Section
    - Vice Chairman, Committee on Estate and Trust Administration (1996-99)
    - Member, Committee on Estate and Trust Administration (1996- )
    - Member, Ad Hoc Committee Liaison to Legislative Advisory Committee
    - Principal and Income (1996-2009)
  • The New York Bar Foundation
    - Fellow (2010- )
  • Iona College - New Rochelle, New York
    - Vice Chair, Board of Legal Trustees (2012- )
    - Trustee, Board of Legal Trustees (2006- )
    - Member, Executive Committee (2009- )
    - Chair, Development Committee (2009- )
  •  Fordham University School of Law - New York, New York
    - Member, Dean’s Planning Council (2006- )
  • The Boys & Girls Club - New Rochelle, New York
    - President (2010-2012)
    - Board of Directors (2002-2012)
    - Vice President and Co-Counsel (2002-2010)
  • The Ursuline School - New Rochelle, New York
    - Board of Directors (2004-2010, 2011-2013)
  • The New Rochelle Humane Society - New Rochelle, New York
    - Board of Directors (2002-2005)
  • Partnership for the Huguenot Children’s Library (Co-Founder)
    - President (1993-98)
    - Director (1993-2002)
  • City Harvest Inc.
    - Member, Executive Committee (1994-96)
    - Secretary (1994-96)
    - Board of Directors (1993-96)
    - Advisory Board (1989-93)
  • Central Park Conservancy
    - Member, Planned Giving Professional Advisory Council (2002- )
  • The New York Archdiocese’s Planned Gifts, Bequests & Endowment Committee (2001- )
  • Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
    - Member, Professional Advisors Council (2003- )

Publications / News / Events

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