The Team Approach to Probate

When Kevin passed away, he left an estate worth $3 million, property he owned separately, property owned jointly with his second wife, and both minor and adult children. He had not consulted with an estate planning attorney for many years, so his estate plan was not as current or up-to-date as it should have been. As his family and business associates squabbled over his estate, it became clear they needed to take a 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

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

What Is a Probate Estate Asset?

Gary served as executor of his dad’s estate. Molly prepared a complete estate plan, which she updated every year. James was concerned that the executor of his mother’s estate was not doing a good job. All three of these people at some point probably asked themselves, “What is a probate estate asset?” Frankly, it is not as cut and dried as it may seem. Probate Estate Asset or Not? When someone dies, they leave Read More

What Is Probate?

You have probably heard of probate. In fact, you may have read about celebrity estates gone bad or tips for avoiding probate altogether. Still, it is a good idea to understand exactly what it entails. Someday, you may be involved in probate for a loved one. Your loved ones may be involved in probating your estate also. Probate Defined Florida law defines probate of Will to mean “all steps necessary to establish the Read More

Will Creditor Claims on Property Upset My Estate Plans?

Dan D. owned several businesses, including some with high potential liability. For example, his roller skating rink had been sued several times. His boat tours of the coast were enjoyable, but there was always the possibility of property damage, injury or even death. Some of his other business concerns carried fairly high levels of debt. In fact, any time someone owns property or a business, there is the potential Read More

Estate Planning for the Single Adult

Esther shrugged as she read the headline, 4 Common Estate Planning Errors and How to Avoid Them. She didn’t bother to read the article. Esther thinks because she is young, single with no kids and a modest bank balance that she does not need an estate plan. Esther is wrong. Even single adults – young or not-so-young – need to do their estate planning. A Simple Will. Most adults own something – a car, furniture and Read More

Probate in Florida: Summary or Formal Administration

Probate is a procedure where assets owned by a deceased person (the decedent) are distributed to heirs. In addition, debts owed by the decedent are paid by the estate, if possible. Florida probate proceedings generally proceed in one of two forms: summary administration and formal administration. First, What Are Probate Assets? Property that the decedent owned at the time of death may be considered probate assets. Read More

Qualities to Look for in a Personal Representative

Choosing the right personal representative for your estate is an extremely important decision. Personal representatives take on responsibilities and duties that will affect loved ones. This is not a decision to be taken lightly, so you may want to consider some of the following qualities when looking for your ideal personal representative. Willing and Able Most of a personal representative’s duties begin as soon as Read More

How to Handle Unusual Estate Assets

Whether a deceased person leaves a valid Florida Will or not, their possessions must go somewhere, usually through probate. During a probate proceeding, a personal representative will be appointed to settle the decedent’s affairs and dispose of their estate assets. That sounds simple on paper, but the personal representative often has a huge job ahead of them. This is especially true when the estate includes unusual Read More