durable power of attorney Tag

Same-Sex Couples May Need to Review Estate Plans

Obergefell v. Hodges, the historic Supreme Court decision requiring all states to recognize legally valid same-sex marriages, will certainly have rippled effects in the estate planning world. Why? Because couples in the LGBT community need to now review their estate plans to determine whether the language used to transfer assets to their significant other is still legally accurate and valid. Many states, including Virginia, did not recognize same-sex marriage prior to the Obergefell decision, so many LGBT couples opted not to put together estate plans where their significant other received assets for fear that they may not be legally valid upon...

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Blended Families and Estate Planning

If you, or your significant other, have been through a divorce, the impact on how you plan your estate can be significant. The absolute worst thing you can do in this situation is nothing and hope your loved ones just “figure it out.” What if your ex-spouse comes out of nowhere and claims they are entitled to certain benefits? It’s happened before. Check out this article I published a few months ago about a Maryland case that involved such a fast pattern: http://insightlaw.net/current-events/attack-of-the-ex-spouse-maryland-court-allows-former-wife-to-receive-50-percent-of-deceased-ex-spouses-pension-benefits. So what should you do? Well, a good first step is to review all of your current estate...

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Estate Planning Tip: Leave a Personal Touch

Many people experience a common nostalgic scenario – you’re cleaning out your closet or rummaging through the pile of boxes in your attic and stumble upon family photos. Your mind is inundated with a wave of memories and emotion. For some people, they embrace this moment and take a trip down memory lane. Your estate plan should incorporate this type of personal touch with a reflection of the life you’ve lived and loved ones you've left behind. Unfortunately, many estate planning attorneys focus solely on the nitty-gritty of estate planning such as making sure you have a valid will, properly...

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LegalDoom: Cookie Cutter Estate Planning Site LegalZoom Being Sued For Flawed Documents

In 2007, Anthony J. Ferrantino was suffering from a terminal illness, so he sought the assistance of his niece to help him write a Last Will and Testament and Revocable Living Trust. They decided to use a popular web site, LegalZoom. Unfortunately, once the LegalZoom documents were created and signed, Mr. Ferrantino's assets could not be funded into the Revocable Living Trust because the financial institutions that held Mr. Ferrantino’s money would not accept the LegalZoom documents as being valid. LegalZoom provided no assistance to Mr. Ferrantino’s family when they had questions and needed help in getting the trust funded....

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Under 40? Top 5 Tips for Getting a Jump on Estate Planning.

I know what you’re probably thinking – “I’m not even 40. Why do I need to even think about planning my estate? Isn’t that something I do when I get my AARP card?” Answer: It's never too early to start planning your estate, especially if you have a family or close loved ones. None of us have a crystal ball showing the future. You may think you have decades ahead of you, but the truth is you only have the present. It is important to remember estate planning should involve disability planning too, not just planning for death. The sooner...

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