What Leads to Trust Litigation?

As estate planning tools, trusts have valuable benefits. They enable you to control how and when your property is distributed after you pass, reduce gift and estate taxes, and avoid the delays and costs of probate. The downside is that when a trust contains a significant amount of money and property, it can cause conflict.  You can contest a trust in Florida if you are one of its beneficiaries. Sometimes, doing so Read More

Preventing Misappropriation Of Trust Funds

When you place assets into a trust—commonly called funding—the trust legally owns them. Trusts can be used to avoid probate for this reason. Hypothetically, if everything you own is in one, you don’t technically have any assets. Estate planning attorneys can create specific types of trusts that allow you to access things such as your home while you are alive. However, after you pass away, your designated trustee Read More

When Minors Are Involved In Probate Litigation

As a firm that works closely with clients involved with probate litigation, we have discussed why people contest wills, trustees who fail to uphold their fiduciary duties, and how an attorney can assist you during this process. When people draft wills or create trusts, they choose beneficiaries. Some of them may be minors, and there could even be beneficiaries that have yet to be born. (E.g Imagine a grandparent who Read More

When A Trustee Breaches Their Fiduciary Duty

Let’s define our terms. A trustee manages the assets that have been placed into a trust. In Florida, the person who created the trust is the grantor. It is common for the grantor to be the trustee when they are alive. However, there will come a time when the grantor becomes incapacitated or passes away. When the trust was created, the grantor designated a trustee to oversee and administer the trust per the grantor’s Read More

Contested Guardianships & Determining Incapacity

When someone is believed to be incapacitated, others may file for guardianship over that person. Ultimately, their goal is to receive the legal authority to make decisions on their behalf. There are numerous reasons why someone could contest a guardianship: The family members cannot agree as to who will become the guardian. The person believes they are not incapacitated and is capable of making their own Read More

Challenging A Will In Florida

This comes in a variety of ways. People need to be updating and modifying their estate plans throughout their lives. Consider the person who has children, gets divorced, remarries, and has more children. Those events are reasons to create or modify an estate plan or a will. To be clear, a will is one element that people may include in their estate planning process. Using the scenario above, what happens if that Read More

When & Why To Contact A Probate Attorney

Although any adult with assets should have an estate plan, not everyone decides to create them. Are they required to? No, but failing to do so could be at the expense of their family, friends, and loved ones.  When someone passes away without an estate plan, they have died intestate. Their assets go through probate. An executor uses those assets to pay off outstanding debts. Anything that remains gets distributed Read More

Can I Buy Property that is in Probate?

When someone passes away, their estate often has to go through the probate courts before any inheritance is distributed to the next of kin. Part of this process includes selling any debts that were owed by the estate. If the estate does not have enough cash assets on hand to settle the debts, the probate court will require that assets are sold to cover the expenses. In many cases, this means that a home or other Read More

3 Reasons A Will Can Be Contested

There are many reasons why a person would choose to avoid probate. In addition to being public, it can be costly and time-consuming. If you create a will, it is likely going to pass through probate. In some cases, small estates will not have to pass through probate. Each state sets its own threshold for what constitutes a small estate.  Although you cannot contest a will because you disagree with it, there are Read More

4 Emotions You May Feel During Probate Litigation

Probate court can be a stressful time no matter what the circumstances are. You just lost a loved one, and now you’re spending a huge amount of money and time in a courtroom hearing people who didn’t know them decide what should happen to their home, belongings, and remaining money. No one said it would be easy. Then Probate Litigation enters the picture. All of a sudden, something is wrong with this already Read More