Caution: Writing Your Own Deed to Avoid Probate Can Lead to Unintended Consequences

One way to avoid probate of real estate after the owner dies is to hold the title to the property in joint names with rights of survivorship with children or other beneficiaries. This may be accomplished by adding the names of the children and certain legal terms to a new deed for the property and then recording it in the applicable public land records.
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How Will the 2015 Supreme Court Decisions Affect You and Your Family?

While approximately 10,000 cases are appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court each year, only 75 to 80 make it to oral argument. Of those cases, only a handful grab the media’s attention. Below is a summary of three landmark decisions handed down in 2015 that could affect how you are taxed, pay for healthcare, and plan your estate. Continue reading

Contesting Life Insurance Beneficiaries

Most of us have been advised to have life insurance to provide for our families in the event of tragedy, and thankfully, many people have heeded this admonition. Unfortunately, situations arise in which an insured person forgets to update beneficiaries, or in which an insured is coerced or tricked into changing beneficiaries. In such cases, the people who believe they are entitled to the proceeds of the insurance policy must contest the named beneficiary on the policy. Continue reading

Estate Planning for Disabled or Special Needs Children

A nearly universal concern for parents of children with disabilities or special needs is how their children will be cared for when they’re no longer able to do so. To a large extent, the quality of care received often depends on the amount of funds available to pay for it, and many parents save diligently throughout their lives in the hopes of providing the very best for their children after they’re gone. Continue reading