July 31, 2012   Estate Planning

Save Your Family from a Treasure Hunt

By Daryl Binkley, Esq.
In this article, WealthCounsel member Daryl Binkley, discusses how lost wills can be a problem for many people.  Daryl provides some tips to implement when creating a trust to ensure that you or your loved ones do not encounter the issue of locating lost wills.   Frequently, I receive calls from people who are trying to locate a will or trust of their parent or loved one who just died. They are not able to locate any trust documents or have any information about the attorney who created it. After doing some research for a particular family, I found out that the attorney who created a trust had died before his client – then there as the job of finding where the deceased attorney’s files went. There are numerous cases of “lost wills.” My personal fav...
April 9, 2012   Disability & Illness

Advance Directives/Living Wills are a Critical Component of Estate Planning

March 31, 2012 marked the seventh anniversary of the death of Terri Schiavo, the 41-year-old who succumbed after her feeding tube was removed as part of a very public legal battle between her husband and parents. As you may recall, Terri Schiavo was in a coma for nearly 15 years after she suffered cardiac arrest and sustained a brain injury. Her husband, Michael Schiavo, alleged that his wife would not want to live in her incapacitated state; she had no written instructions in place. Her parents, on the other hand, suspected that Michael had something to do with Terri’s collapse and argued that she valued life and would have chosen to be sustained. As you also recall, the Florida Legislature, then-Gov. Jeb Bush, and then Congress and President George W. Bush all intervened in this...
January 9, 2009   Estate Planning

The Need for a Pour Over Will and the Search for Rich Aunt Mabel

By Bruce G. Kaufmann, J.D.
If  your practice is like mine, some clients will wonder, “Why do I need a Pour Over Will if I have a Revocable Living Trust?” The answer of course is that you may not need the Pour Over Will if you properly fund the Trust. If you transfer all your assets into the trust then the Pour Over Will is not necessary. But often an asset gets left out of the trust either intentionally, accidentally or incidentally. Some recommend that the automobile be intentionally placed in a separate trust or left in the individual’s name if all other assets are in the trust. Since the automobile is often involved in expensive accidents the thought is that if it is left out of the trust then it will be&n...
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