Do a Husband and Wife Need Separate Wills?

Many couples do all their financial and estate planning together. It seems expedient and keeps both of them completely informed. But is this always a good idea? Are there times when a husband and wife need separate Wills? His and Hers Estate Planning A joint Will is a single legal document that typically says the surviving spouse receives the entire estate. One big disadvantage to using a joint Will is that both Read More

Standalone Retirement Trusts and Your IRA

Trusts generally consist of a grantor or settlor, a trustee, and at least one beneficiary. Every trust also has another characteristic – a purpose. Trusts may be established to save taxes, protect assets, provide for someone with special needs, or distribute wealth to current and future generations. For Standalone Retirement Trusts, the purpose is to serve as beneficiary for qualified retirement funds, including Read More

Disadvantages of Irrevocable Trusts

Dave and Marge H. were interested in establishing an irrevocable trust. They had heard it might be a good estate planning option for them. However, they never considered the disadvantages of irrevocable trusts. Basic Trusts Trusts consist of at least one grantor, one trustee, and one beneficiary. After the grantor creates the trust, it must be ‘funded.’ The trust is just an empty vessel unless assets are Read More

What Is Probate?

Some of us have been involved in probate at some point in our lives. If probate is so common, why do we struggle to answer the question, “What is probate?” Read on to learn more about this common court proceeding. What Is Probate? It’s a Court Proceeding But there are many court proceedings: civil lawsuits, guardianships, criminal cases, and divorces just to name a few. What makes probate different? Probate is the Read More

Should I Use a Revocable Trust or an Irrevocable Trust?

Perhaps you are new to estate planning. Or you prepared a plan years ago and need to revise it. Estate plans typically include a Will, a durable power of attorney, and a medical power of attorney. Many people also include a trust, a revocable trust and/or an irrevocable trust. If you are wondering, “should I use a revocable trust or an irrevocable trust,” think about the following questions: Do I want to remain in Read More

Important Elements of a Will

When you’re dealing with a legal document, it’s important to get it right. For example, a Will that is written incorrectly or leaves out important elements of a Will may spell big trouble for your heirs. Fortunately, Florida law lays out the elements needed to make a valid Will under Florida law. The Testator One of the most important elements of a Will is actually a person – the testator. This is the person who Read More

Hiring a Probate Lawyer in Stuart

Lawyer advertisements are everywhere, from the local newspaper to billboards out on I-95 to the Internet. The sheer number of attorneys seeking to represent you can be overwhelming, especially when dealing with a probate matter. How will you choose the attorney who is the best fit for you? There are some compelling reasons why you should learn more about hiring a probate lawyer in Stuart. You Live in or Near Martin Read More

Do I Need a Florida Gun Trust?

Joe had very clear ideas about where his property should go after he passed away. Fortunately, he put together an estate plan that stated his wishes. However, he was concerned about how his firearms would be transferred to his son. In addition to a Will, general durable power of attorney, and medical power of attorney, Joe also established a gun trust. If you are wondering, “Do I need a Florida gun trust?” you may Read More

Florida Elective Share Fundamentals

Dividing estate assets can be a thorny problem. In addition to a deceased person’s Will – assuming they prepared one – personal representatives and heirs may tackle family allowance eligibility, homestead laws, unusual Wills, and beneficiary designations that have not been updated for years. Add the following to that list of issues: the Florida Elective Share. What Is the Florida Elective Share? The surviving Read More

Reasons to Hire a Port St. Lucie Probate Lawyer

Probate cases hit close to home. Often, close family members are involved, and it can be a stressful time. Hiring a local attorney to handle your probate case may reduce the stress of estate administration. That’s just one of the reasons hiring a Port St. Lucie probate lawyer is a good idea if you are dealing with a probate matter in Port St. Lucie or surrounding communities. Reason #1: Proximity Probate cases are Read More