When you create a living trust, you must name a successor trustee to take over for you if you are unable to act due to incapacity or death. It is crucial that this decision be given careful consideration and that the right person be selected for the job.
You just found out that your favorite aunt, Aunt Melba, has died. In the midst of your grief and sadness, you receive a notice from the attorney handling Aunt Melba’s affairs stating that you are a beneficiary. Your best friend advises you to get an attorney. What should you do? Will Aunt Melba’s attorney help you? After all, Aunt Melba’s attorney has been helping your family for years. Since this attorney knows Melba and the family affairs, shouldn’t her attorney be able to help you as well?
Timeshares have come a long way since they first arrived in the real estate market back in the ’70s. In the early days of timeshare ownership, high-pressure sales tactics, exceedingly vague contracts, and inflexible scheduling policies caused many people to quickly regret such purchases. Over time, however, timeshares have become more consumer-friendly with greater transparency in the terms of the contract, more flexibility in scheduling timeshare weeks, more diversity in the location of the vacation properties, and less pressure during the sales experience.
In early 2020, married actors Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson became honorary citizens of Greece. The president of Greece bestowed this honor upon them due in large part to their humanitarian work in the country after a deadly wildfire swept through Athens in 2018. Hanks and Wilson spend considerable time in Greece as it is one of their favorite spots for extended vacations, so when this honor was offered to them, they graciously accepted. Although neither of them gave up their US citizenship, there will nevertheless be important estate planning considerations that Hanks and Wilson must address.
Any US citizen with dual citizenship must be prepared to carefully consider a variety of complex legal issues when planning for death. This is particularly true if the dual citizen owns property in one or both countries.
Misconceptions about who needs an estate plan abound. Most people believe that estate planning is only for extremely wealthy business moguls or celebrities. But that could not be further from the truth. Estate planning is the process of making decisions about what happens to you, your money, and your property when you pass away or can no longer make decisions for yourself. Thus, estate planning should be standard practice for every adult age eighteen or older.
One way to think about estate planning is to compare it to a classic recipe you should have in your cooking repertoire by your twenties. Like that satisfying meal, your estate plan should have the right ingredients—or in this case, people.
The death of an iconic figure can sometimes impact us deeply because it reminds us of our shared humanity. With a celebrity’s passing, we realize that death is an equalizer. It also reminds us of the importance of estate planning to protect a person’s money and property. Estate planning is not reserved for those with large amounts of wealth or larger-than-life personalities. Life’s difficulties challenge all of us regardless of our relative fame or obscurity.
Gone are the days when you can write up a quick will or trust and be assured that everything you own will pass to your heirs or beneficiaries according to the terms of those legal documents. Instead, it has become critically important for families to understand both the laws applicable to wills and trusts and the complex laws governing retirement plans. Failure to understand these laws can exact a heavy price. The following are some of the crucial considerations if you end up inheriting a qualified retirement plan.
The death of a loved one is one of the most difficult times in a person’s life. Nothing can truly prepare a person for such a loss. However, dealing with the financial stress of frozen bank accounts can exacerbate the stress. Without proper planning, your significant other could struggle to gain access to your accounts. The frustration is especially distressing if the frozen account was the primary source for paying joint or household expenses.
It is natural to want to protect our loved ones no matter what. However, you may be finding it difficult to provide a prosperous future for your loved one if that person will be, is, or has been incarcerated. Unfortunately, this event will forever change your loved one’s life, but with the right planning, you may still be able to provide the kind of future you envision for your loved one.
Upon seeing the words medallion signature guarantee (MSG), you may envision some shiny grand medallion, signifying a level of greatness few attain. However, that is far from what this guarantee means. An MSG is a unique tool used to protect the transfer of certain accounts and property from fraudulent transfers and may be required during the transfer of certain stocks and bonds.
It can be hard to get motivated about your estate planning; it sounds about as fun as getting a root canal. However, you also probably want to make sure that your loved ones are protected and receive your hard-earned money and property – regardless of whether you have $10 million or $10,000.
Estate planning attorneys are occasionally asked by clients whether an estate plan can include a right of first refusal (ROFR) (sometimes called a first right of refusal) on certain items or parcels of property. The following example helps to illustrate the way this legal tool is used and why it might be useful in your own situation.
We collect stuff throughout our lives. This “stuff” is known as our personal property. Some items are valuable, like jewelry, baseball cards, and works of art. Other items are sentimental, like grandma’s tea set, old Christmas ornaments, and photographs. Regardless of the value, it is important that these items be distributed the way you want when you die. Consider the following to ensure that your wishes for your personal property are honored.
When planning for death, most people assume they will die before their beneficiaries (e.g., their spouse, children, and grandchildren). While these assumptions are often well-founded, they do not always come…
Although it is rare for anyone to look forward to the passing of a loved one, many people cannot help wondering about a future inheritance. Often when a person dies and leaves money or property to heirs or beneficiaries, the first thing the heirs or beneficiaries want to know is the overall value of the estate.
The unpredictable can occur at any time: fires, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, pandemics—you name it. Because September is National Disaster Preparedness Month, we want you to be prepared for whatever life…
Michigan defines “larceny” as stealing property that belongs to another. The Michigan Penal Code contains several theft and larceny offenses. For example, under MCL 750.356, an individual can be charged…