Wills

A Funny Thing Happened at the Deli…

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A young couple sits down at the local deli with their baby asleep in the stroller.  It is an unseasonably warm day outside with birds chirping, a light wind blowing and barely a cloud in the sky.  However, the beauty surrounding them escapes the couple because they cannot decide what to do about their finances.…

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10 Reasons Young Adults Should Consider Estate Planning

10 Reasons Young Adults Should Consider Estate Planning

According to the law of averages, approximately 1 in 500 people in the United States who are aged 25-44 will die this year.  In other words, 499 out of every 500 in this group will be around in 2012. So why on earth do estate planning attorneys, financial planners, insurance salesmen, etc. recommend that anyone…

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What’s In a Will? 10 Common Clauses and Their Functions

By George Wythe [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Today, let’s take a post to broadly work through the clauses that are in a typical will.  Why?  To remove some of the mystery and to show you how such a document is effective and even essential.  Read more...

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Expecting Soon? Estate Planning Issues You Should Consider

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Image via Wikipedia For some reason, I am friendly with lots of women.  Perhaps it is due to the influence of my tough mother and two strong older sisters, or that I followed Benjamin Franklin’s advice to marry someone smarter than me.  However, this does not mean that I fully understand how women function.  Read…

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Latest Simpsons Episode Raises Concerns About Burns’ Estate Plan

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The first three minutes of the latest episode of The Simpsons, “Flaming Moe“, introduced a slew of interesting estate planning themes.  Spoiler alert: I reveal here these three minutes of the plot, which is then relegated to barely an afterthought for the remainder of the episode.  Read more...

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Probate In Real Life III: Rights Against Beneficiaries

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Today, we continue our discussion of probate and the executor’s duties.  In Part I, we discussed what happens if a named executor does not want to serve.  In Part II, we discussed inventories, the executor’s duty to control the estate’s assets, and the potential for the estate representative to suffer personal liability.  In this post,…

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Probate in Real Life I: Named Executors Declining to Serve

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A Fairly Common Scenario Let’s say you live in a townhouse next door to a kindly elderly widower renting the place.  You help him with groceries, getting the newspaper, and make sure he pays his bills on time.  You become his confidant and spend more and more time exchanging life stories and shooting the breeze…

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The Elizabeth Edwards Estate: Will John Truly Be Disinherited?

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Making the rounds in the news lately is the fact that Elizabeth Edwards, who passed away this past December 7, has seemingly disinherited former Presidential candidate and husband John Edwards by not including him in her will.  Inside Edition has released the will, signed six days before Ms. Edwards’ death.  Read more...

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Wills vs. Living Trusts: 6 Items to Consider

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All adults need at least a will.  Without one, state law determines what happens to your assets and minor children, and the results may not work out as you would expect or even like. However, in many situations, it may be more appropriate to have a living trust (aka “revocable trust” or “revocable living trust”)…

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22 Errors Found in a “Create Your Own Will” Software Package

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Last week, I bought a fairly well-known estate planning software package for under $50 to see how well it would do in drafting a will. I assumed that I was part of a married couple living in Anytown, Virginia with a small, non-taxable estate that wanted to disinherit one of our three adult sons.  Read…

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