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Civil Remedies Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning

Read Civil Remedies updates, alerts, news, and legal analysis from leading lawyers and law firms:

Highest Court Affirms Insurance Company’s Interpleader

by Steptoe & Johnson PLLC on

On March 13, 2018, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals held that an insurance company can pay the proceeds of a life insurance policy into the court when there is a dispute as to who is the rightful beneficiary. At...more

Should an Estate or Trust Operate a Decedent’s Family-Owned Business?

by Murtha Cullina on

When a business owner dies, his or her ownership interests often become part of a probate estate or are transferred to one or more trusts in order to continue the operations of the business. But sometimes the decedent’s...more

Trust Beneficiary Permitted to Contest Trust Despite No-Contest Clause

Key Takeaway: In Ginsberg et. al. v. Ginsberg et. al., Judge Leibensperger ruled that a trust beneficiary could assert a trust was procured by fraud despite the presence of a in terrorem or no-contest clause. Judge...more

Court Held That Estate Beneficiary Did Not Have Standing To Assert Forfeiture Or Breach Claim Against Executrix’s Attorneys, That...

by Winstead PC on

In re Nunu, an estate beneficiary sued the executrix to have her removed due to alleged breaches of fiduciary duty and also sought to have the court refuse to pay her attorneys in representing her in a removal action and/or...more

Georgia Superior Court Could Not Sanction Probate Court Conduct

by Bryan Cave on

Probate court practice can be quirky, fraught with procedural peculiarities and appellate traps for those who do not regularly practice there. Appeals from a Georgia county probate court to that county’s superior court – an...more

Watch the Calendar When Considering Claims in Connection With a Family-Owned Business

by Murtha Cullina on

Shareholders of family-owned businesses sometimes assert claims of misconduct against their co-owner relatives. These claims can take the form of oral complaints or written claim letters. ...more

Wrongful Death Claims in North Carolina

by Ward and Smith, P.A. on

Introduction - When someone is injured by the negligence of another, the injured party often has a legal claim against the at-fault party under North Carolina law. Sadly, however, sometimes these incidents result in the...more

A Parsing of the Newly-Minted Uniform Directed Trust Act

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

Charles E. Rounds, Jr., “The Uniform Directed Trust Act: Context, content and critique," Trusts & Estates (December 2017), at p. 24 [Vol. 156 No. 12)] is now accessible on JD SUPRA below....more

[Webinar] Remedies For A Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claim in Texas - February 27th, 10:00am CT

by Winstead PC on

This presentation will discuss the potential remedies that plaintiffs can obtain for breach of fiduciary duty claims with an emphasis on trust disputes, and will cover: 1) pretrial remedies of temporary injunctive relief,...more

Limitations Period Doesn't Apply to Tribal Claim for Mismanagement of Trust Funds - Court of Federal Claims Ruling May Expand...

by Holland & Knight LLP on

• A decision by the Court of Federal Claims has important implications for breach of trust claims involving tribal trust funds. • Most claims for mismanagement of tribal trust resources are limited to the six-year period...more

Court Held That Retirement Benefits Belonged To The Worker’s Sister, Who Was Designated Beneficiary, And Not The Wife

by Winstead PC on

In Estate of Gibson, a man named his sister as the beneficiary of his retirement plan in 1989. No. 06-17-00059-CV, 2017 Tex. App. LEXIS 9963 (Tex. App.—Texarkana October 13, 2017, no pet.)....more

Accountant liability in the trust context

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

As a general rule, an accountant, qua accountant, is not a fiduciary, absent special facts. That having been said, the accountant for a trustee in breach of his trust may be liable to the beneficiaries for any injury to the...more

Missing the trust issue: Litigators beware

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

In 2017, South Carolina’s Supreme Court decided The Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina [the “Disassociated Diocese”] v. The Protestant Episcopal Church of the United States of America [the...more

Court Denies Request For Mandamus Relief Regarding Court Order Requiring Spouse of Deceased Trustee To Prepare An Accounting

by Winstead PC on

In In re Ng, after a jury found that a deceased trustee did not breach fiduciary duties, a trial court nonetheless ordered the deceased trustee’s spouse to prepare an accounting of the trust. No. 09-17-00386-CV, 2017 Tex....more

Life After Death: Ohio Mortgage Creditors' Rights After a Borrower's Death

For a loan secured by real estate, a borrower typically signs a promissory note or a line of credit agreement, and a mortgage securing real property owned by the borrower. In Ohio, a creditor generally has multiple remedies...more

Court Held That Statutory Probate Court Had Subject Matter Jurisdiction Over Trust Dispute

by Winstead PC on

In Barcroft v. Walton, a statutory probate court entered sanctions, struck a defendant’s pleadings, and entered a default judgment against a defendant in a trust case. No. 02-16-00110-CV, 2017 Tex. App. LEXIS 8541 (Tex....more

Could seeking judicial enforcement of a trust's no-contest clause implicate the state's anti-SLAPP statute?

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

On January 1, 2013, I posted on JDSUPRA some content entitled "Trial lawyers beware of the in terrorem trust clause: A nasty trap that can keep on springing," which is still accessible. The focus of the piece is the lawyer...more

Court Refuses To Enforce Arbitration Clause By Financial Advisor

by Winstead PC on

In Steer Wealth Mgmt., LLC v. Denson, Denson, in her individual capacity and as executor of her husband’s estate, sued Steer Wealth Management, LLC, for causes of action including breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract...more

Texas Supreme Court Will Hear Oral Argument On Whether Texas Recognizes A Claim For Tortious Interference With Inheritance Rights

by Winstead PC on

On October 11, 2017, the Texas Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Anderson v. Archer, No. 03-13-00790-CV, 2016 Tex. App. LEXIS 2165 (Tex. App.—Austin March 2, 2016, pet. filed). In Anderson, the trial court’s judgment...more

Ferri v. Powell-Ferri: A trust decanting decision that is less than meets the eye (Part II)

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

The Supreme Court of Connecticut (SCC) certified three trust-decanting questions of law to the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts (SJC) incident to a divorce proceeding. On March 20, 2017, the SJC rendered its answers to...more

Court Affirms Judgment For Estate Representative Due To A Statute-Of-Limitations Tolling Statute

by Winstead PC on

In Kaptchinskie v. Estate of Kirchner, the purchasers of property sued an estate to establish that the estate’s claim under a note was extinguished by the statute of limitations. No. 14-15-01080-CV, 2017 Tex. App. LEXIS 7012...more

Court Affirms Summary Judgment In Will Contest Where There Was No Evidence Of Undue Influence

by Winstead PC on

In Estate of Frye, parties filed an application to set aside an order probating a will due to an allegation of undue influence. No. 07-16-00398-CV, 2017 Tex. App. LEXIS 6992 (Tex. App.—Amarillo July 26, 2017, no pet....more

Does a removed trustee have a duty to see to it that the fiduciary reins are assumed by a qualified successor?

by Charles E. Rounds, Jr. on

A removed trustee retains myriad residual fiduciary duties and liabilities. The most obvious is the duty not to betray the confidences of the entrustment going forward. Less self-evident is the removed trustee’s residual...more

If It’s Not In The Will, Does It Matter What The Testator Wants?

by Bryan Cave on

If you want someone to get your money or property when you die, why don’t you just say so? The case reporters are thick with stories of testators who left money or property to one person with the supposed ‘understanding’ or...more

Cash Value of Life Insurance Policy Exempt From Garnishment

by Dickinson Wright on

DC Mex Holdings LLC v Affordable Land LLC and Dale Fuller, ___ Mich. App. ___ (July 25, 2017), Case no. 332439 - Michigan’s Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion interpreting a statutory provision exempting insurance...more

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