CHALLENGES WITH SETTING UP FIRST WILL

People who are crafting their first will at a relatively advanced age sometimes struggle with the specific provisions that are commonly included in such estate administration documents. They worry that their children will not receive their full inheritance if the younger generations get divorced. They also fret over whether their children will turn out to be good people; should the child still receive the inheritance Read More

HEIRESS BESTS WILL EXECUTOR IN TYCOON’S ESTATE CASE

A contentious and long-debated estate litigation case related to businessman Wilson Lucom's will has finally been settled, according to federal documents. The man had left most of his $50 million fortune to a charitable foundation designed to assist poor Panamanian children. The executor of the estate had filed claims against the man's widow in relation to the estate distribution decision. Even though he had Read More

SUPREME COURT: NO BENEFITS FOR KIDS CONCEIVED AFTER DAD’S DEATH

As newer ways of conceiving children have been developed, many family and probate laws have had to change. Babies are born from surrogates, donors and in vitro fertilization, which can easily complicate probate and family law issues. One woman found out that her estate administration plans were not in order when she attempted to retrieve Social Security benefits for her children, who were born 18 months after their Read More

ADMINISTERING AN ART TRUST

Man Ray was an influential artist during the Jazz Age. But how did almost the entirety of his art collection end up in the hands of a car repair shop owner? The story is almost as surreal as the man's art itself, and it involves a series of trust administration decisions that will likely provide a financial boon for a humble family. The original art trust was formed by the artist's wife. Since she passed away, Read More

SMALL-BUSINESS OWNERS: MAKE A BUSINESS TRANSITION PLAN

You've spent your whole life working to build your small business to your liking. You have invested money, time and effort into the venture, working tirelessly to ensure that it succeeds. But do you know what would happen to your business if you suddenly died? That's an important consideration for all small-business owners to ponder. Estate planning experts say that many small-business owners just assume that Read More

ANNA NICOLE’S ESTATE OWES $300K IN BACK TAXES

The estate of the deceased "Playboy" playmate Anna Nicole Smith is facing serious tax trouble, after the Internal Revenue Service declared this week that it won't wait any longer for overdue payments. Poor estate administration in the years after the model's death may be to blame for the mix-up. The IRS claims that Smith's estate owes more than $300,000 in back taxes that have been pending for nearly 10 years. The Read More

FLORIDA BANKS HOP ON THE WEALTH MANAGEMENT BANDWAGON

The recent economic downturn has created a buyer's market for wealth management services. Banks throughout the nation, including South Florida, are offering a variety of incentives for people who need wealth management advice, courting clients with a wide range of perks. Banks have begun to host wealth management seminars for special populations, including women and other target groups. These events allow the firm Read More

MAN ACCUSED OF ASSAULTING ELDERLY UNCLE AFTER PROBATE HEARING

Elderly Florida residents are no doubt aware of the challenges that estate planning can present when deciding who gets what. Tempers have been known to flare amongst jealous relatives, but it's important that everyone act calmly. A man has been accused of assaulting his elderly uncle after a contentious custody and probate hearing. The incident occurred when the two men were leaving a hearing was related to the Read More

ARE LIVING TRUSTS A CURE-ALL FOR PROBATE FEES?

Living trusts are sometimes pitched to Florida seniors in high-pressure environments, with salespeople contending that probate fees will be lower if a trust is in place. These people often convince older citizens to create trusts where they may not be needed. Experts advise that those interested in proper trust administration first consult a lawyer and financial adviser before listening to salespeople. A living Read More

COCA-COLA FIGHTS ANTIQUE STOCK CLAIM

Sometimes big gifts come in unlikely packages -- at least that's what one family is contending after discovering an unlikely fortune in an antique stock certificate. The family is suing Coca-Cola over an estate valuation issue, after one man purchased an inexpensive certificate at a garage sale. The certificate, they say, entitles the holder to 1.8 million shares of company stock, which would amount to $130 million Read More