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Read Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning updates, articles, and legal commentary from leading lawyers and law firms:

If You Expect to Work in the Family-Owned Business for Life, Be Sure to Get It in Writing

by Murtha Cullina on

Family-owned businesses often employ multiple family members. Even if there is an expectation that employment will continue indefinitely, the company and the family member employees both usually reserve the right, explicitly...more

How to protect your family-owned business from your child’s spouse

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

For most people, a child’s wedding is one of those great life moments that is filled with months of planning and excitement. However, for people who own a family-owned business, the old myth that 50 percent of marriages end...more

Family Law: Corporate and Trust Challenges to Service of Process and Jurisdiction

by Carlton Fields on

The president of a corporation, manager of a limited liability company, trustee of a family trust, or principal of another business entity receives a summons in a Florida divorce case. One spouse contends the other’s control,...more

Personal Planning Strategies - December 2016

by Proskauer Rose LLP on

2017 Estate, Gift and GST Tax Update: What This Means for Your Current Will, Revocable Trust and Estate Plan - As we previously reported, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act") made the following permanent:...more

For Love or Money: Considering Prenuptial Agreements

The question of prenuptial agreements comes up often in multi-generational family- owned businesses. The question is typically raised by mom or dad, or maybe grandmother or grandfather, and goes something like: “We’re all...more

Recent Cases of Interest to Fiduciaries

by McGuireWoods LLP on

Berlinger v. Wells Fargo, N.A., Case No. 2:11-cv-459-FtM-29CM, 2015 WL 6125529 (M.D. Fla. Oct. 16, 2015) - Discretionary distributions to beneficiary which were used in part to satisfy alimony obligations were not...more

Employing the term "family" in trust instruments and trust-related legislation is asking for trouble

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

Employing the term “family” in trust instruments and trust-related legislation is asking for trouble. In §8.15.6 of Loring and Rounds: A Trustee’s Handbook (2016) the authors explain why the meaning of the term in a given...more

Tax and Estate Planning Newsletter - Winter 2015

by Archer Norris PLC on

Dear Clients and Colleagues: The holiday season brings thoughts of the New Year, with reflections on recent changes and resolutions for the future. During this season of reflection and planning, consider the effect of...more

Succession Planning: “If I get hit by a bus tomorrow…”

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

Let’s face reality. We are all going to pass on someday, so we might as well be prepared and lessen the burden for those following behind us. One of the first steps in effective succession planning is to gather in one place...more

Whether the trust relationship should be fundamentally transmogrified into a juristic entity/person

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

In re Estate of Fournier, 902 A.2d 852 (Me. 2006) illustrates how a fundamental conversion of the trust relationship by legislation or otherwise into a juristic entity/person might well limit the trust’s practical...more

A trust is not an agency

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

The trustee is not an agent of the beneficiary. The trustee's duty not to delegate the administration of the trust could well be implicated if the trustee without authority were to behave as if he were the beneficiary's...more

Why trustees need to know something about will residue clauses

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

The Anglo-American trust is an invention of the judiciary, specifically the English Court of Chancery. The will, a testamentary instrument, on the other hand, is a creature of statute. The testamentary trust is a product of...more

Family Law: Corporate and Trust Challenges to Service of Process and Jurisdiction (Updated)

by Carlton Fields on

The president of a corporation, manager of a limited liability company, trustee of a family trust, or principal of another business entity receives a summons in a Florida divorce case. One spouse contends the other’s control,...more

The Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code: Context, Content, and Critique

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

The law review article "The Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code: Context, Content and Critique," 96 Mass. L. Rev. 27 (2014), co-authored by Courtney J. Maloney and Charles E. Rounds, Jr., contains a detailed discussion of the...more

Is a quiet (silent) trust illusory?

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

Is a quiet or silent trust illusory? The question is intentionally ambiguous. Is the question whether the trust itself is illusory, or just its quietness? A quiet or silent trust has been defined as “an irrevocable trust...more

LLC Preferred Interest Qualifies For Marital Deduction

by Charles (Chuck) Rubin on

In a recent private letter ruling, the question was raised whether an LLC interest that received a preferred return with additional LLC cash flow going to other common interests could qualify for the marital deduction if...more

The charitable corporation: A trust in disguise?

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

The charitable trust can have certain practical advantages over the charitable corporation, at least in some quarters and under certain circumstances. Operational simplicity and low-cost maintenance are some of the pluses....more

Insight on Estate Planning - October/November 2013

In This Issue: - To preserve your wealth, consider a DAPT - Estate planning for same-sex spouses: What the Supreme Court’s DOMA ruling means - Using an FLP or LLC? Beware the step transaction...more

“Fiscal Cliff” Tax Bill: The Highlights

by Ronald Adams on

While the new law is projected to raise taxes by about $600 billion in the next 10 years, it offers some comfort for many taxpayers who may have been preparing for the worst ...more

The trustee is not relieved of the duty to defend the trust just because the beneficiary happens to be getting divorced.

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

The trustee's primary allegiance is to the beneficiary, not to the non-beneficiary spouse or ex-spouse, unless the express terms of the trust provide otherwise. Thus, when there is marital discord, the trustee must suppress...more

The 2010 Tax Relief Act and How it Affects 2012

by Ronald Adams on

In a January 2011 article we addressed the changes to the gift and estate tax provisions contained in the 2010 Tax Relief Act. Everything may change at the end of 2012 so it is more important than ever to take a look at...more

Estate Planning & Probate Q&A; Business Formation Q&A

Q&A on Estate Planning, Probate, and Business Formations...more

Succession: Is Keeping the Business in the Family Necessarily the Best Course?

by Ronald Adams on

Whether you should transfer ownership of the family business to your offspring may depend on your needs and the ability of your company, after the transfer, to support two families...more

Business Succession: Who Will Run Your Business After You're Gone

by Ronald Adams on

Many entrenepreneurs have spent decades building their business right alongside raising their family. But for as much calculating thought as they have put into running a profitable company, they probably have devoted mush...more

DPA Summer Newsletter 2011

by Peter Nicholas on

Our Summer Newsletter. Our website has loads of resourceful material that may be of interest, take a look at our resource center and fact sheets. In this issue we have articles on Wills, Trusts, Transferable Nil Rate Bands,...more

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