Estate Planning In Second Marriages

  We all know someone who is in a second marriage and many of us are in a second marriage.  Second marriages can be exciting and fulfilling while at the same time present special planning challenges. A second marriage may include his children, her children, and sometimes our children.  How will the new spouse be provided for in the estate plan?  Can the assets of each spouse be protected for their respective children while still providing for the new spouse? The competing interests are between the children of the first spouse to pass away and the surviving spouse. Estate planning...Read More

Estate Planning – A Competent Attorney Is Essential

Many people have a misconception about estate planning.  For example, many will avoid doing their estate planning because they believe their assets “aren’t worth much” and think estate planning would be a waste of time and money.  The reality is that estate planning is necessary for everyone — no matter the value of their assets.  Completing your estate planning now with an attorney that regularly practices in the estate planning area to clearly define your intentions is an investment which will likely save your family financial and emotional heartache in the future. While you may want to live forever, there...Read More

What Are The Advantages Of A Revocable Trust?

When people think of how they would like their assets distributed following their death, they usually think of using a Will.  However, depending on your assets, a Will may not be the best testamentary document to use.  Creating a Revocable Trust provides a number of advantages over a Will. 1. When you transfer your assets to your Revocable Trust, your family will not have to go through the probate process.  Probate is a legal process in which the court supervises the administration of your estate.  Probate can be time consuming and costly to your family who will already be dealing...Read More

You May Regret Transferring Assets To Your Children Now

Parents often think about transferring assets to their children outright or as joint-tenants during their life.  They may believe that the transfer will avoid probate and make it easier for the children upon the parent’s death.  Lifetime transfers are sometimes used as an estate planning tool in limited circumstances and may avoid probate; but, for most of the population these transfers could trigger unfavorable consequences. There are several problems associated with an outright gift of an asset to a child or children.  What if you regret your decision or realize later that you need the asset for your daily needs? ...Read More

I Am The Trustee Or Personal Representative Of An Estate – Now What Do I Do?

When someone passes away, you may find yourself in charge of administering the decedent’s estate.  You may have been nominated as successor trustee through a Trust, the personal representative (executor) through a Will, or the court may have appointed you to administer the estate.  As the trustee, or personal representative, one of your responsibilities is to determine what assets are owned by the estate or trust.  When you inventory the decedent’s property, will also need to be aware of how the property is owned.  There are four primary forms of ownership:  Individual, Joint, Trust and Beneficiary Designation. Individual Ownership:  It...Read More
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