Will Contests and How to Avoid Them

When country singer Glen Campbell died in 2017, he probably did not foresee the manner in which his family subsequently chose to handle his estate. He did leave a Will. However, three of his eight children were specifically excluded from the Will, which led them to contest the Will’s validity. Now, Mr. Campbell’s estate is being held up in probate court until the matter is decided. Whether a family is famous or not, Read More

Dynasty Trusts: Sharing Your Wealth with Future Generations

Over the years, George and Marla had built a real estate empire. Now, their deepest desire was to make sure their children and future descendants benefitted from their work. While discussing their estate planning goals with their lawyer, they learned about dynasty trusts. If sharing your wealth with future generations is a consideration, you, too, might benefit from a dynasty trust. Building an Enduring Legacy with Read More

Can You Serve as Trustee of Your Own Trust?

You may be thinking of adding a trust to your estate plan. Maybe you have already added a trust to your estate plan. Either way, choosing the trustee of your own trust can be a difficult decision to make. Articles about qualities to look for may help ease your decision making, but what if you want to serve as the trustee of your own trust? Trusts, 101 In general, a trust will consist of the following: A Read More

Understanding the Annual Gift Tax Exclusion

With an eye toward reducing their potential federal estate tax, Malcolm and Helen began reviewing their estate plan. As they discussed options with their estate planning attorney, they learned about the annual gift tax exclusion. The Annual Gift Tax Exclusion According to current IRS guidelines, individuals may make gifts of up to $15,000 per person (as of 2018) every year without incurring any gift tax. This is Read More

4 Signs You Need an Estate Planning Lawyer

Have you ever made a Will? According to a Gallup poll, only about 44% of Americans have done so. That’s unfortunate, because every adult needs an estate plan, now more than ever. And in our everchanging world, you need an estate planning lawyer to help you prepare the best estate plan possible. Though there are many reasons to prepare your estate plan, we will look at four signs you need an estate planning Read More

Digital Currencies as Probate Assets

The personal representative of an estate has an important job. One of the most important parts of that job is locating and gathering probate assets. Finding a decedent’s car and house may not be hard, but what about items that are stored somewhere, such as personal property, cash or bitcoins? The job may be harder when treating digital currencies as probate assets. Planning ahead can make the job easier. What are Read More

What Does Portability Mean?

Portability technically means something that can be easily moved or carried. The term can be used in several contexts. For example, software portability means the software is easy to transfer to another computer. Portability of retirement and pension funds indicates that a worker may transfer retirement funds when taking a new job. In Florida, homeowners may move some or all of their homestead exemption benefit to a Read More

Talk to Your Family About Estate Planning

You’ve already taken the first step: developing an estate plan. Your Will, durable power of attorney, and advanced health care directive have been signed and are stored away. Now it’s time to take the next step. It’s time to talk to your family about estate planning. Your Plan, Your Time Talking about estate planning can be hard. In addition to discussing your mortality or incapacity, family members may be unhappy Read More

Build Asset Protection into Your Estate Plan

A simple estate plan covers the basics: you get to choose who will represent you if you become incapacitated, who will make medical decisions on your behalf, and how your property will be distributed after you are gone. What a simple plan does not cover is how to protect that property before and after your death. That’s why it is so important to build asset protection into your estate plan. Let’s consider Jeremy, Read More

Trusts that Transfer Wealth

If you have built and/or acquired substantial assets over your lifetime, chances are you want to enjoy their fruits before passing them on to loved ones. Gifts are one way to share the wealth.  In addition, trusts that transfer wealth may reduce your taxable estate with some added benefits. Besides transferring wealth, you may be able to make charitable contributions and provide for future generations. Charitable Read More