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July 2015 Archives

How can assets from smaller estates avoid probate?

Most in San Fernando Valley will probably hear that they should try to avoid probate at all costs. While the standard way to avoid probate that most are familiar with is to put assets into a living trust, are you aware that smaller estates may also be able to bypass the probate court?   According to the website for The Judicial Branch of California, you can attempt to gain access to any personal property that you’re entitled to through a written affidavit.

Examining the exemptions to Medi-Cal estate recovery claims

Most Woodland Hills residents share one thing: Debt. Repaying debts is often something that many will not be able to fully accomplish during their lifetimes. In fact, according to, nearly 18 percent of all Americans will die with unpaid debts. Oftentimes, too little thought is given to those estate heirs and beneficiaries left to deal with these liabilities.

Why should you try and avoid probate?

If you are like most in Woodland Hills, your knowledge of estate planning is limited. You may often hear people say that you want to avoid having your estate go to probate at all costs. Yet then you may hear reports like that from the Judicial Council of California that state that there were 41,419 filings in probate court in the state in 2014. If so many cases do eventually go to probate court, can the process really be all that bad?

Detailing your fiduciary duties as a trustee

Often, we here at the Law Offices of Alice A. Salvo are asked by Woodland Hills residents to explain what's expected of them as a trustee. If you have been named as such by a family member or friend, it's important that you gain the same understanding. The trust beneficiaries as well as the courts will expect you to know your responsibilities as trustee. Not only that, but you're also expected to carry them out within the confines set by the law. A failure to do so could leave you open to claims of breach of fiduciary duty and the potential for civil action.

An overview of revocable living trusts

From irrevocable trusts to a testamentary trust or inter vivos trust, people have a number of options when it comes to putting together a trust. In Woodland Hills, California, some people who want to ensure the proper distribution of assets opt for a revocable living trust. While revocable living trusts are quite popular, it is important for people to understand the details of this arrangement and how it will fit into their estate plan.

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Woodland Hills, CA 91364

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