Arizona Court of Appeals

Trust Protector amendment

Trust Protector’s Amendment Challenged By Beneficiaries

A recent Arizona appellate case raised a novel question. Can a trust protector’s amendment be challenged by the trust’s beneficiaries? Austin Bates and his family To understand the appellate decision — and the effect it might have on others — it helps to know the family involved. From the reported decision and a quick check …

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Retirement savings

Ex-Husband Must Return Late Wife’s Retirement Savings

Dividing retirement savings in an Arizona divorce proceeding can result in confusion and inequity. Sometimes the problems don’t appear for years — or even decades. A recent Arizona appellate decision illustrates the importance of paying attention to retirement savings plan details. Sandra Brown’s (brief) marriage In 1992, Sandra S. Brown married John M. Brown. That …

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Divorce court custody order

Guardianship Judge May Deviate from Divorce Court Custody Order

In a divorce proceeding, the court determines who should have custody (and decision-making authority) over any minor children. When a child subject to such an order reaches majority, the court order usually expires. But when the now-adult child has a disability, either or both parents may seek appointment as guardian. Does the divorce court custody …

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judicial immunity

Judicial Immunity Does Not Protect GAL or Attorney

Judicial immunity protects judges and court personnel from being sued by unhappy litigants. Does that protection extend to people appointed by the judge under court rules? Sometimes, but not in every instance. Steve Gibson’s murder In 2013,Steve Gibson was brutally murdered in his Peoria, Arizona, home. Police soon determined that Gibson’s wife, son, and daughter …

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IRA beneficiary designation

IRA Beneficiary Designation Controls Distribution at Death

We’ve written about this issue before. Generally, your IRA beneficiary designation will control who receives your account. Your will (or trust) provisions will not override the beneficiary designation. Arizona’s community property rules won’t have much effect — in fact, they will normally have no effect. It’s all about your IRA beneficiary designation. Of course, people …

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