News & Analysis as of

Decedent Protection

After a Loved One Passes: Six Important Steps to Know

The days, weeks, and months after the death of a loved one can be emotional and stressful, especially if you are named the executor of your deceased family member or friend’s estate. ...more

Are Your Social Media Accounts in Trusted Hands if You Die or Become Incapacitated?

by Barley Snyder on

All of us increasingly rely on online accounts and electronic devices. Many of us own assets that exist only in electronic book entry form or are stored on an electronic device, including social media accounts, photographs...more

Surrogate’s Court Declines to Order Demise of Fashion Business

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

When you want to sue to dissolve a business in New York on behalf of the estate of a deceased shareholder, to which court should you go: Supreme or Surrogate’s Court? ...more

November Trust and Estates Litigation Advisory

by Goulston & Storrs PC on

Since our last newsletter, there has been one significant development in the Probate and Family Court, and one decision of note. First, effective as of November 20, 2017, the Probate and Family Court issued Standing...more

Indiana Supreme Court Finds Negligent Hiring Claims Are Improper When Employers Admit Employee Was Acting Within Scope Of...

by Reminger Co., LPA on

The Indiana Supreme Court overturned a Court of Appeals decision issued earlier this year when, on October 31, 2017, it found that employers cannot be liable for negligent hiring when they admit that their employees were...more

A Last Will And Testament Can Always Be Changed (Before Death)

It is a fundamental principle of law that a Last Will and Testament duly signed and witnessed is binding on no one until the person who signed the Will dies. That is to say that a person who signs a Will in say January of...more

The Court of Appeals Examines the Promissory Estoppel/Statute of Frauds Relationship

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

In the past, New York Courts have demonstrated a willingness to apply the theory of promissory estoppel, to overcome the legal requirements of the Statute of Frauds. The Restatement (Second) of Contract, Section 139, endorses...more

Undisclosed Foreign Accounts, Part II

by Moskowitz LLP on

The executor of a decedent’s estate has a duty to act in a prudent manner and in accordance with the law. At times, this may result in having to take an unpopular position or action that angers the beneficiaries....more

Undisclosed Foreign Accounts

by Moskowitz LLP on

Serving as Executor can at times be more of a headache than an honor. On top of a pile of paperwork and dealing with a multitude of family issues, you can be sued!...more

Stored Communications Act Does Not Prohibit Disclosure of Deceased’s Yahoo Account

In what appears to be a case of first impression in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) has ruled that Yahoo may disclose the contents of a deceased’s Yahoo email account to his personal...more

Enforcing Nursing Home Arbitration Agreements Post-Kindred

Just five months ago, the U.S. Supreme Court weighed in on a nursing home arbitration dispute in Kindred Nursing Centers v. Clark. It held that the Kentucky supreme court’s rationale for not enforcing the arbitration...more

Alan Thicke Estate Dispute Highlights Pre-litigation Threats

by LeClairRyan on

Actor Alan Thicke – best known for his role on the TV show Growing Pains – passed away at the end of 2016, leaving behind a dispute between two of his sons and his third wife. ...more

Employee Benefits Developments - September 2017

by Hodgson Russ LLP on

Arbitration Clause in Employee Handbook Requires Participant to Arbitrate Fiduciary Breach Claims Against Investment Advisor - Cooper v. Ruane Cunniff & Goldfarb Inc. (S.D.N.Y. 2017) - In a major victory for an...more

What Happens to Monetary Penalties When Convicted Defendant Dies with Pending Appeals?

by Charles (Chuck) Rubin on

This was the question in a recent Second Circuit Court of Appeals case. The defendant was convicted of securities fraud, mail and wire fraud and obstruction of justice, and entered into a negotiated guilty plea to criminal...more

Estate Tax Portability – Not So Fast My Friend

by Dickinson Wright on

Many of you have heard of the new Federal estate tax “portability” rule that allows a surviving spouse to effectively inherit any unused federal estate tax exemption of a predeceased spouse. An individual can only use the...more

Audit of Predeceased Spouse Permitted for Purposes of DSUE Adjustment for Surviving Spouse’s Estate

by Charles (Chuck) Rubin on

A husband died in 2012, and his estate filed a gift tax return to report a deceased spousal unused exclusion (DSUE) and elected portability. The IRS sent a letter to husband’s estate accepting the estate tax return as filed....more

The BOE Death Trap: Avoid Property Tax Penalties on the Death of a Family Member

In many cases California’s property tax rules automatically penalize insufficiently counseled individuals who inherit interests in real estate-owning legal entities from a family member upon their death. To avoid this...more

You’ve Got (E-)Mail! Can Your Survivors Access It After Your Death?

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

E-mail is seemingly omnipresent. Day in and day out, we use it in our business, social, and personal affairs. Yet, the improvements to the technology associated with e-mail have far outpaced the development of the law...more

Appellate Court Notes

by Pullman & Comley, LLC on

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: SC19577 - Estate of Brooks v. Commissioner of Revenue Services - Husband died in Florida in 2000 and left a large amount of securities in two QTIP trusts for the benefit of his...more

IRS Provides Automatic Extension to Make Portability Election (Under Some Circumstances)

by Charles (Chuck) Rubin on

A portability election by the estate of a first spouse to die allows the unused unified credit of the first spouse to be used by the surviving spouse for estate and gift tax purposes. Since Code §2010(c)(5)(A) requires the...more

T&E Litigation Newsletter- June 2017

by Goulston & Storrs PC on

In Roth v. Newpol et al., 91 Mass. App. Ct. 699 (May 31, 2017), the Appeals Court considered whether a residuary clause in a decedent’s last will and testament disposing of "any monies remaining in [her] estate" encompassed...more

People Considering a Will Contest Must Move Quickly

by Reminger Co., LPA on

The loss of a loved one is a devastating event, and can be a chaotic and confusing time for those left mourning. The making of phone calls to family and friends, the preparation of funeral arrangements, and the handling of...more

When Should I Get a Last Will and Testament?

by Reminger Co., LPA on

Lexis Nexis claims that 55% of American adults do not have a last will and testament or some kind of an estate plan. This means that more than half of American estates have their personal assets pass via intestacy - without a...more

Who Can Bring Forth a Challenge

by Moskowitz LLP on

Following Richard Pratt’s death in 2009, Madison Ashton claimed that she had left her profession as a sex worker to become the Australian billionaire’s kept mistress. Pratt had apparently promised the former Penthouse Pet a...more

Til Death Do Us Part – Second Circuit Vacates Deceased Former New York State Senator’s Criminal Fine and Special Assessment under...

In United States v. Libous, 15-3979 (2nd Cir. May 30, 2017) (Katzmann, Winter, Stein), the Second Circuit vacated the jury conviction of former New York State Senator Thomas W. Libous’ and remanded the case to the district...more

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