Estate Planning Wills

Estate Planning is a process where individuals prepare or plan for the settlement of their personal affairs in the event of incapacitation or death. Estate plans typically include provisions relating to the... more +
Estate Planning is a process where individuals prepare or plan for the settlement of their personal affairs in the event of incapacitation or death. Estate plans typically include provisions relating to the disposition of assets, guardianship of minor children, and appointment of representatives to make medical and financial decisions. Effective estate planning can decrease tax liability and facilitate the probate process.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Practical Tips Regarding Oral Contracts to Make Wills

This blog post is part 2 of the series on oral contracts to make wills, and this post contains several practical tips for how a person can optimize his chances of winning a claim for breach of an oral contract to make a will....more

Rules of Succession in Dubai

What law governs? The main source of law in the UAE is Sharia in which all laws are formulated and based on. It is considered a public order. The governing law for succession in the country is UAE Federal Law No. 5 of...more

Should You Create Trusts for Your Kids?

If your children are under age eighteen, you should have trusts for them in your Wills, in the event you and your spouse should die before all your children reach age 18. If minors receive assets prior to reaching age...more

UPDATE: Can an Intended (and Disappointed) Beneficiary Still Sue a Will’s Drafter?: The General Assembly of Virginia Enacts a...

Back in the summer I wrote a post discussing the impacts of the Thorsen decision by the Supreme Court of Virginia. In Thorsen, a testator wanted to leave her estate to a charity if her daughter did not survive her. The...more

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

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

When Life Imitates Art

– Will Caveats or “The Family Feud” Part 2 –  The North Carolina Court of Appeals continues to publish opinions in Will Caveat cases that could easily serve as a storyline from a daytime television series. One example...more

Getting Your House in Order: Estate Planning is for Everyone

A recent survey found that nearly 50% of individuals with children do not have a Will and over 40% of individuals over the age of 55 do not have one. Whether a person is 18 or 98 with net assets of $200,000 or $20 million,...more

Jury Trials in Surrogate’s Court Removal Proceedings

As parties prepare for trial before the Surrogate’s Court, a question that oftentimes arises is whether the parties have a right to a trial by jury. The right to a jury trial is anything but universal in Surrogate’s Court...more

Oral Contracts to Make Wills

The vast majority of people have no idea that Virginia law recognizes oral contracts to make a will. As a result, people often miss out on asserting a claim to an inheritance because they didn’t know that they had one to...more

Do You Have a “Day After” Insurance Policy?

Insurance is a form of risk management, designed to minimize the loss associated with certain events like flood, fire, accidents, disability, and even death. Most insurance requires an agent and the payment of premiums. ...more

What is Undue Influence in Will Caveat Cases?

In order to set aside a Will after a person has died, a Caveator (the person attacking the Will) has three courses of action under the law. First, he can assert that the Testator (the person making the Will) was incompetent...more

Estate Planning Pitfall: You’ve videotaped your will

Technology enables a deceased person to express wishes to his or her assembled family from beyond the grave, but states generally require wills to be physical documents that are written, signed and properly witnessed during a...more

Good Advice for Everyone: Ten Steps to Avoid Big Trouble

On both a business and individual level, there are ten easy steps you can take now to avoid big trouble later. If you address just five of these items this month, you will be half way there. Originally published in the...more

T&E Litigation Newsletter - February 2017

Several recent decisions serve as a good reminder that it is not only the Probate and Family Court that addresses important T&E issues in Massachusetts. In the consolidated matters of Hanna et al. v. Williams et al.,...more

Insight on Estate Planning - February/March 2017

In This Issue: - Stretch out estate tax on business interests - Maintaining family harmony: Balance beneficiaries’ needs with a total return unitrust - Is a donor-advised fund right for you? - Estate planning...more

Executor’s Duties Before Receiving Letters

A nominated executor is obliged to secure estate assets even before the issuance of letters testamentary, or preliminary letters testamentary (see Matter of Schultz, 104 AD3d 1146 [4th Dept. 2013]). Courts have recognized...more

Wealth Management Update - February 2017

February Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The February § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs...more

10 Arguments Against Pre-Death (Antemortem) Probate and Will Contests

There are a handful of states that allow a person to probate a will (and challengers to contest the validity of a will) before the testator (the person enacting the will) dies. In recent years, there has been a trend to...more

Lessons to be Learned From the Power of Attorney

Powers of attorney and trust instruments have each been the subject of many an estate plan. They each have also been the subject of multiple estate litigations. In combination, the two have served as fodder for controversies...more

A Guide To: How to Challenge a Will in Michigan

The vast majority of people who pass away leave behind property to their family, friends, and loved ones. Although there are a number of options available to an individual when planning for the disposition of his or her...more

Sharp as a Tack . . . Clear as a Bell

Very often, when the proponent of a will (and sometimes even the attorney-draftsperson or witness) is questioned about the decedent’s mental state and the decedent’s instructions, the reflexive response is that the decedent...more

Top Four Estate Disputes from 2016

With the end of 2016 upon us, now is a fitting time to look back at some of the top estate disputes from this past year. 2016 was a typical year in that, unsurprisingly, people continued to die and families continued to fight...more

iWill or iWon’t

Ever wondered what will happen to your Facebook page when you die? The California Legislature has recently weighed in. Effective as of January 1, 2017, California will have its first law to specifically address the handling...more

Some Not So Obvious Reasons to Have a Will

Many times I have heard the following questions from prospective clients: “If my things will pass to my spouse and children automatically, why do I need a Will?” or “My estate is not large enough to be subject to estate...more

What You Should Know About Determining Capacity in Ohio

One definition of “capacity” refers to the maximum amount/number that something can contain (e.g., a freezer’s capacity is 1.1 cubic feet; the capacity of a public room is 140 people). “Capacity” also describes an ability to...more

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