News & Analysis as of

Executors

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

Spare Your Heirs the Guitar Man’s Fate: Three Tips for an Estate Plan That Silences Arguments Over Family Heirlooms

When Grateful Dead front man Jerry Garcia died in 1995, he left his custom guitars to the man who made them. But Douglas Irwin, who built the guitars known as Eagle, Wolf, Tiger, Wolf Jr. and Rosebud, ran into opposition...more

Estate Planning Pitfall - You chose your executor too hastily

Haste makes waste. Or, in the case of estate planning, it can lead to other problems and, possibly, financial loss. Notably, if you don’t take enough time to choose the executor for your estate, the “wrong call” can cost your...more

The Wrong Estate Executor Can Make Family Drama Worse, As Jerry Garcia’s Heirs Discovered

When Grateful Dead legend Jerry Garcia died of a heart attack in 1995 at age 53, he left his assets to his third wife, three daughters by two ex-wives, a fourth daughter by a former girlfriend, and a step-daughter, among...more

Insight on Estate Planning - October/November 2017

In This Issue: - Social Security benefits When is the right time to begin receiving payments? - Planning ahead after a divorce - ABLE accounts benefit disabled family members - Estate planning pitfall: You chose...more

What is an Estate Executor’s Role?

Often when a person is appointed to serve as the executor (if there was a will) or administrator (if there was not a will) of a family member or friend’s estate they have not had experience with the role or process. This post...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

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

Would You Take on a Job if the IRS Had Discretion to Decide Whether You Got Paid?

by Charles (Chuck) Rubin on

Raelinn Spiekhout was the personal representative of the estate of Deborah Scott. The estate was subject to claims of over $1.8 million dollars, including IRS claims for $591,406.05. The principal asset of the estate was real...more

Need Another Reason To Avoid Mixing Family & Finances?

by Bryan Cave on

You have a big heart and a little bit of money. You want to help out a cash-strapped family member, and – “because you’re family” – you don’t put down how much you’ll loan or how it’ll be paid back. ...more

Forcing the Production of Information in Probate Litigation When You Have Been Disinherited

by Reminger Co., LPA on

Can a disinherited person force the production of information necessary to substantiate the efforts required to pursue a challenge to a Will, beneficiary designation, or Trust? Isolation and manipulation of a loved one by...more

Courts Hold That Fiduciaries Waived Complaints About Trial Court Orders

by Winstead PC on

In In re Estate of Roach, a trial court removed an executor for multiple grounds, including: (1) Texas Estates Code Section 404.0035(b)(5), which authorizes removal when an independent executor becomes incapable of properly...more

On Its Own Motion

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

While most decisions rendered by the Surrogate’s Court result from an affirmative request for relief, occasionally the court will address an issue on its own motion when justice or the exercise of its inherent or statutory...more

Estate planning during divorce: It’s never too early to start

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

Estate plans prepared for married couples will vary in complexity and detail but generally follow the same theme: The revocable trust or will typically provides that upon the death of the first spouse, the surviving spouse...more

Privacy Perils: The Untimely Death of Digital Data

by Bass, Berry & Sims PLC on

Many people have thoughtfully gathered information on the location of their bank accounts, deeds, lock boxes, safe combination, car title (and keys), investment accounts, check books, and other assets to make handling their...more

Court Enforces Release Agreement Between Trustees/Executors and A Beneficiary

by Winstead PC on

In Harrison v. Harrison Interests, a beneficiary of an estate and multiple trusts had a dispute with the executors and trustees. No. 14-15-00348-CV, 2017 Tex. App. LEXIS 1677 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.] February 28, 2017,...more

The Statute “Says What it Means and Means What it Says"

by Bryan Cave on

Trusts and Estates practitioners often focus solely on the Tax Code found in Title 26 of the United States Code and ignore other parts of the United States Code (U.S.C.). However, it is a mistake to do so as Marci McNicol...more

Fiduciary Imprudence: When the Sale of an Asset Results in a Surcharge

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

Although one of the many duties and responsibilities of an executor is to marshal and appraise estate assets, and, depending upon the dispositive terms of the governing instrument, liquidate them for purposes of distribution,...more

Be Sure to Mind your Manners in Estate Litigation

by Bennett Jones LLP on

Miss Manners may just be worth listening to for those involved in wills and estate litigation. In fact, not doing so may be to your detriment given that poor conduct can cost you with the courts....more

Executor’s Duties Before Receiving Letters

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

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

Forgiveness May Be Available For An Untimely Caveat

by Bryan Cave on

It’s a new year and with it comes many resolutions. Each year, a popular resolution is to be more forgiving or to forgive someone who wronged you. Apparently, trying to get a head start on its resolutions, on December 30, the...more

What Happens to your "Social Media" and other "Digital" Life when you Die?

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

Over the holidays, it’s likely that you or a loved one received some type of computer or device that connects to internet websites, e-mail and applications. Or that pictures were taken and stored on such a device, or that...more

Wealth Management Update - December 2016

by Proskauer Rose LLP on

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

States Pass "Digital Assets" Legislation

by White & Case LLP on

Financial transactions are increasingly occurring online. Many of us pay bills electronically, or have them automatically charged to credit cards or debited from checking accounts. Many of us also receive asset and credit...more

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