What Happens if You Die Intestate?

When you die, it is a good idea to have an estate plan in place. An estate plan includes a will or trust and outlines how assets are to be distributed in the event of your death. However, many people fail to have an estate plan in place at the time of their death. In […]

Are Holographic Wills Valid?

When it comes to estate planning, many of us try to take the easy route. For example, you may be thinking, “Why do I need a lawyer to draft a will for me when I can just write my own?”

Estate Planning After Divorce

There are many reasons why you should update your estate plan after a divorce. During a marriage, your spouse is given certain legal rights that are included in the estate plan. Since your relationship has changed, your estate plan should change as well.

Estate Planning for the Pet Parent

Many people plan their estates for the benefit of their children and other human heirs. But what do you do if your only family is a house full of cats or a bunch of dogs? As you get older, you may be concerned that your pets will outlive you. What happens if they do? Is […]

Estate Planning Tips for Single People

Spouses, children, and extended family play a central role for many people when estate planning, but the interests and goals of single individuals are quite different. Though they still enjoy rich, loving relationships that carry all the positive qualities of being family, state intestacy laws do not recognize these bonds if you die without a […]

Duties of a Successor Trustee After the Grantor’s Death

A trust is a legal entity that a person creates to achieve various estate planning goals, such as managing assets, providing legal protections for property, and avoiding probate. There are multiple roles involved with the trust, so it is important to understand how they work. Key definitions include the grantor who creates the trust, the […]

Important Takeaways From Battle Over Aretha Franklin’s Wills

Almost five years after Aretha Franklin’s death in 2018, a court in Michigan has finally assessed the validity of the multiple wills that she left behind. The Washington Post reported that two versions were in dispute, one created in 2010 and another in 2014. Both were handwritten and similar in the sense that the Queen […]

The Art of Gifting in Your Estate Plan 

When you think of your estate planning options, your mind turns to creating a will, living trust, powers of attorney, and advance directives. You probably do not consider how gifting to others would offer benefits, but it may be a useful strategy in appropriate situations. The underlying reason is estate tax rules established by the […]

When is a Revocable Living Trust a Suitable Solution for Your Estate Plan?

With all the options available to create your personalized estate plan, it can be overwhelming to figure out which documents are the most important for your situation. A will is the cornerstone of estate planning, and powers of attorney are useful for incapacity, so these will certainly be on your list. However, some people may […]

What is a Self-Proving Affidavit in a Will? 

Most people are aware that a last will and testament is a way to dictate your final affairs at death, but they are not as informed about the specific purposes. The key functions of a will are to communicate your intentions about who will act as your executor, how to distribute assets to beneficiaries, and […]