Dale M. Maas, Attorney at Law
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Wills and Trusts Archives

Estate plans and conflict between siblings

We have covered estate planning from different perspectives, and we understand the many different factors that should be considered when creating an estate plan as well as some of the sources of contention with respect to the administration of an estate after someone passes away. In some families, the estate planning process can be particularly complex due to multiple factors. For example, siblings may have an ongoing rivalry or they may find themselves in the middle of a tough dispute over disagreements regarding the administration of an estate.

Divorce, special needs and trusts

There are many challenges for those who work through the divorce process, especially if kids are involved. Moreover, those who have a child with special needs may face even more uncertainty during the divorce process. Not only do some parents have questions and concerns regarding child custody, child support and other divorce-related topics, but some are worried about their child’s future and want to do everything they can to ensure that their child will have the resources they need in the years to come. Sometimes, a special needs trust is a great way to gain peace of mind knowing that these issues have been addressed.

Naming beneficiaries and family disputes

Estate planning can present a number of challenges, but there are times when this process can be especially complicated. For example, those who are unsure of how to divide their assets among those they love may have a lot of stress and be unsure of which decisions to make with regard to naming beneficiaries. Moreover, the choices that are made during the estate planning process could have a significant impact on an entire family in the years to come. In some cases, the decisions that are made while setting up a trust or a will can lead to disputes within a family.

Estate planning and domestic animals

When many people set up an estate plan, they consider how their will or trust will help those they love after they have passed on. This may include a spouse, children, grandchildren and other loved ones, such as a family pet. Many people love their pets as if they were their own children and it is important to take this issue into consideration when creating (or making changes to) your estate plan. In this post, we will examine some issues related to estate planning and domestic animals.

Simplifying the estate planning process

Setting up an estate plan may seem like a daunting task to some people, especially if they are facing other hardships in their lives (such as health problems or a demanding job). There are many options to choose from and people may have a hard time making difficult decisions, such as the best way to divide their assets among those they love. Our law office is sympathetic to people who are in this position, and we believe it is essential for those interested in creating a will or a trust to do everything they can to make the process easier.

Understanding estate tax portability

As people in Baton Rouge begin the process of creating a will, they may think that they must earmark a portion of their assets to go towards paying estate taxes. This no doubt comes from the assumption that all estates are subject to tax (either federal or state). Yet before they resign themselves to the notion that some of what they had hoped to leave their beneficiaries will inevitably be eaten up by taxes, they should know that Louisiana does not levy an estate tax, and few estates actually are required to pay any federal tax. 

Ownership dispute over Farrah Fawcett painting resolved

The purpose of a will is to declare the intended succession of ownership of one's property. If questions exist over whether one actually owns a certain property, that issue must be resolved prior to the asset being included in an estate's administration proceedings. The question of ownership may often be resolved by a brief review of one's property records (which is why people are encouraged to maintain certificates of ownership for their more valuable properties). Yet if such records do not exist (and if a testator is no longer alive to consult with), then officials may be left to rely upon whose claim over the property appears to be the most legitimate. 

Workplace problems and estate planning

Whether someone is having a hard time with regard to naming beneficiaries and figuring out how to split up their assets or they cannot decide which type of trust will suit their needs best, there are many different estate planning challenges that people may have to work through. Sometimes, people may be going through other difficulties in life, which can also get in the way of estate planning. For example, a tough divorce or problems in the workplace can also make estate planning complicated. Whether you are under a great deal of pressure at work or you recently found out that you will lose your job, it is important to prevent these issues from interfering with your approach to estate planning.

What are some perks of special needs trusts?

If you have decided to create a trust or a will, there are definitely a number of options on the table. It is critical for you to figure out which estate plan will suit your needs best, and help your loved ones in the years ahead. If you have a family member with special needs, a special needs trust could be the way to go. However, you may have questions about this option and it is essential to review the ins and outs of special needs trusts before moving forward. This option can provide a variety of benefits for those who create these trusts and their loved ones.

Getting remarried? Don't forget your estate plan

Over the past several decades, many social barriers have been broken down and people are now more open to different types of relationships and family situations. One of these situations is when a couple gets married after one or both partners have been married before. This may happen after the death of a spouse or after a divorce. In either situation, the new marriage can be a source of joy and the start of a positive future. 

Dale M. Maas, Attorney at Law
11777 Justice Avenue
Baton Rouge, LA 70816

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