Catherine A. Ray

Trusts & Estate Planning

Cathy provides comprehensive support to clients throughout every stage of estate planning, including creating simple and complex wills, irrevocable and revocable trusts, and high-net-worth tax planning. She also advises trustees and executors to ensure a smooth transition of assets during trust and estate administration.

Cathy’s approach is deeply personalized; she invests time in understanding her clients and their families so she can design an estate plan that reflects their true wishes and unique circumstances. Her educational background in psychology, along with her empathetic approach as an attorney, earns her the complete confidence of her clients as she guides them through an often sensitive and complex period of life.

In addition to her trusts and estates practice, Cathy contributes her tax experience to our ERISA Practice Group, specifically in working with clients to prepare qualified domestic relations orders and assisting small businesses with IRS compliance issues related to their employer sponsored retirement plans.   


Prior to joining the firm, Cathy was an associate at a local law firm where she worked with high-net-worth clients in preparing their estate plans with the overall goal of minimizing federal and state income and estate taxes. Due to her proficiency in tax law, Cathy also supported the Employee Benefits/ERISA Practice Group where she worked closely with small business owners, actuaries, and accountants to design and implement qualified retirement plans

Cathy’s strong foundation in estate planning began in law school, where she focused her studies on estate planning, estate administration, and federal tax law. She was awarded the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for achieving the top grade in her Estate Planning course and graduated as a member of her law school’s estate planning curricular program.  During her last semester of law school, Cathy worked as a full-time extern at the Surrogate’s Court in Manhattan assisting pro se locals with probate and estate administration matters.

Originally from northern Virginia, Catherine graduated from Virginia Tech with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. After graduation, she interned with U.S. Congressman Gerry Connolly while volunteering at a local mental health facility and the local Department of Community Services, providing social services to residents affected by or at-risk of developmental delays and disabilities and mental health illnesses.

Cathy currently resides in Syracuse with her fiancé. She enjoys spending time with friends and family, traveling, reading, spending time in nature, and practicing yoga.

Acknowledgements & Affiliations

  • New York Bar Association
  • Onondaga County Bar Association
  • Tompkins County Bar Association
  • Estate Planning Council of Tompkins County
  • Volunteer Lawyers Project – Pro Bono Champion, 2022

Community Involvement

  • Volunteer Lawyers Project – Surrogate’s Court Clinic
  • Syracuse University College of Law – Guest Lecturer
  • Finger Lakes Women’s Bar Association – Secretary of the Board, 2022-2024


J.D., Syracuse University College of Law, 2018
B.S., Virginia Tech, 2014


New York

Catherine A. Ray

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