Probate, Estate Planning and Trust Law
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May 2017 Archives

Determining the legal viability of oral trusts

The basic premise of a trust is fairly straightforward: A person (the settlor) asks another (the trustee) to retain and manage an asset for the benefit of yet another (a beneficiary). Given the simplicity of that explanation, one might think that a trust is little more than a promise made between people in Woodland Hills. This may prompt the question of whether or not one can transfer assets through an oral trust.

How can one ensure the duties of a trustee are fulfilled?

Assuming the role of trustee for a trust created by a family member, friend or colleague in Woodland Hills is a huge responsibility, and certainly not a request you should consider fulfilling without first dedicating a significant amount of thought and care to it. By accepting such a responsibility, you assume a number of duties, both to the settlor and to the beneficiaries of the trust. To ensure that that you put forth your best effort in completing your duties as a trustee, interested parties to the trust may require a performance or surety bond.

Heirs see proceeds of sale of figurines 80 years later

Many in Woodland Hills may wonder what sort of assets make up their estates, and how far those properties can go in generating income and other benefits for their beneficiaries. Any tangible (and in some cases, intangible) property can qualify as estate assets. That means that one’s cash accounts, securities, real estate holdings, investment accounts, and precious items may all be made to benefit one’s family, friends, or other parties once he or she is gone.

You don't have to predict the future to plan for it

It is impossible to know what will happen in the future, but there are steps that you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones in the years ahead. In addition to an updated will and complete estate plan, you may also protect your interests by drafting advanced directives for your assets and health care.

Debt allocation after death

Many in Woodland Hills may joke about dying penniless and poor, yet in the case of many local residents, their financial circumstances may actually be worse than that. Recently, statistics seem to show that more and more people are dying in debt. Information shared by Fox Business shows that as many as 73 percent of Americans carry debt at the time of their deaths. The average amounts carried by those who do die in debt is just under $62,000.