Brett J. Barthelmeh, Esq., AEP® is a Partner of the firm and concentrates his practice on estate planning, probate, and trust administration for individuals, families, and business owners. He counsels private clients on creating and maintaining estate plans that are both values-based and tax efficient, with particular emphasis on advising young professional families. His practice also includes the diagnostic, design, and implementation of advanced planning strategies to reduce estate tax exposure; asset protection strategies for executives, physicians, and attorneys; structuring impactful philanthropy; planning for non-citizen individuals; and planning involving life insurance, heirloom vacation properties, and other specific assets.
Brett holds the Accredited Estate Planner® designation awarded by the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils (NAEPC). He has been consistently recognized as a Massachusetts Super Lawyers Rising Star, nominated to the Lawyers of Distinction, and named in the Best Lawyers in America for Trusts & Estates.
Brett currently serves on the board of directors for the Boston Estate Planning Council, one of the nation’s oldest and largest multidisciplinary organizations of wealth, tax, and estate planners, and is a member of WealthCounsel, a national association of estate planning practitioners, where he previously served on its Trusts & Estates Education Advisory Committee. He is a former member of the Professional Advisors Committee, and past Co-Chair of the Professional Advisors Network, both advisory panels to Boston’s community foundation, The Boston Foundation, Inc., and a past co-chair and former advisory board member of the USA 500 Clubs Giving Circle, a charitable fund harnessing collective philanthropy.
Brett has been quoted in publications such as the New York Times, written for organizations including WealthCounsel and Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE), and presented for The Boston Foundation, Inc., MCLE, and the Boston Bar Association on estate planning and estate administration topics.
Prior to joining Squillace & Associates, Brett supported the underwriting department of an international loan sale advisory firm and assisted in the organization for due diligence and trading of billions of dollars of distressed debt securities.
Brett earned his B.S., cum laude, from Boston University, College of Communication, and his J.D. from Syracuse University, College of Law, where he was awarded certifications in Estate Planning and Family Law. During law school Brett was a member of the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic and counseled clients regarding tax disputes with the IRS and the State of New York.
Brett enjoys outdoor activities, golf, and international travel, having traveled extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Central & South America, and the South Pacific.
Best Lawyers, The Best Lawyers in America, Trusts and Estates (2023)
Massachusetts Super Lawyers Rising Star (2014-2022)
Accredited Estate Planner® (AEP®), National Association of Estate Planners & Councils (2021)
Lawyers of Distinction, nominated (2021)
Professional Affiliations & Community Involvement – Current
Member, Boston Estate Planning Council (BEPC)
Director, BEPC Board of Directors (July 2021-July 2024)
Founding Member, USA 500 Clubs Professional Organization (New England Region)
Professional Affiliations & Community Involvement – Past
Co-Chair, BEPC Membership Committee
Vice-Chair BEPC Governance Committee
Member, BEPC Budget & Finance Committee
Member, BEPC Community Engagement Committee
Member, WealthCounsel Trusts & Estates Education Advisory Committee
Member, Professional Advisors Committee, The Boston Foundation, Inc.
Co-Chair, Professional Advisors Network, The Boston Foundation, Inc.
Co-Chair and Advisory Board Member, USA 500 Clubs Giving Circle
Past Presenter, Estate Planning Basics, The Boston Foundation, Inc.
Past Presenter, Trust Administration, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education
Past Presenter, Trust Administration, Boston Bar Association
Publications & Media
- Author, Trust Termination, Drafting Wills and Trusts in Massachusetts (Chapter 37), 6th Edition, MCLE (2022).
- Author, Incapacity Documents, Drafting Wills and Trusts in Massachusetts (Chapter 50), 6th Edition, MCLE (2022).
- Co-Author, Noncitizen Spouses and the Qualified Domestic Trust, Estate Planning Strategies: Collective Wisdom, Proven Techniques of WealthCounsel Attorneys (Second Edition) (Chapter 5), WealthCounsel Attorneys, (2022).
- Co-Author, The QDOT: Watch the ‘Sunset’ with You Noncitizen Spouse, WealthCounsel Quarterly, Fall 2022.
- McKenna, Kristin, “That’s Terrible…But It Would Never Happen To Me: Real Life Estate Planning Nightmares,” Darrow Wealth Management Blog, March 29, 2019.
- Bernard, Tara Siegel, “Life Insurance Buyer’s Guide: What Type, How Much and Who Will Benefit,” New York Times, February 19, 2016.
- Miller, Joshua S. et al, “Trust Administration Within the New Paradigm of Estate Planning,” Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, 2014.