Probate potpourri

A Probate Potpourri

This week we looked for cases (and stories) illustrating important principles from probate court. We found a surprising batch of cases, and wanted to share them all. Hence this probate potpourri. We have four cases (from California, Louisiana, Maine, and New York) to share with you. California: “right of survivorship” may not mean what it…

Fiduciary fees

Fiduciary Fees — Can You Charge, and How?

When someone acts as fiduciary — as trustee, personal representative, conservator or agent under a durable power of attorney, they might want to charge for their work. How do they set their fiduciary fees, and what are the rules? In this podcast episode, we discuss fiduciary fees, and what you might reasonably expect. Necessarily we…

Nosy questions

Nosy questions

When we meet with a new client, we ask a lot of nosy questions. You can guess why we are so invasive, but we do want to assure you that it is more than just prurience or idle curiosity. We really do need to know about family dynamics, capabilities of your family members (or limitations),…

Do you need a trust?

Do You Need a Trust?

Are living trusts oversold? That is, do you need a trust? This basic estate planning discussion is the one we probably get asked about most often by our clients. There is much mystique about the need for and utility of revocable living trusts. Are there people who should not create one? Are there others who…

Your special needs planning

Your Special Needs Planning

When do you need to do your special needs planning? Do you have a child who receives Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) or Medicaid benefits? If so, you need to get working on your special needs planning. Is there someone in your family (a grandchild, a niece or nephew) receiving such benefits? You need to think…

Placing Restrictions on Your Trustee

Placing Restrictions on Your Trustee

When you sign a trust, you probably have a vision of how the trustee will operate. Will they continue to utilize your trusted advisors? Liquidate all your carefully-selected assets? Understand your intentions regarding distributions to your beneficiaries? You might place restrictions on your trustee to make sure they behave in accordance with your vision. Much…