Finding Fiduciaries: The Attorney as Fiduciary, Part 3

James McNary / December 7, 2018
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Occasionally a client will ask her attorney to serve as trustee (or trust protector). Any attorney considering acceptance of a fiduciary appointment must be mindful of several practical and ethical considerations. First, the attorney should determine whether her professional liability insurance covers acting as a fiduciary. The attorney should then consider the following ethical obligations […]

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Finding Fiduciaries: Using Trust Protectors and Directed Trustees, Part 2

James McNary / December 3, 2018
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The Minnesota Trust Code introduced several new fiduciary or quasi-fiduciary positions into Minnesota trust law. Minnesota Statute section 501C.0808 creates the offices of “trust protector”, “directing party” and “directed trustee.”  The estate planning attorney should be familiar with the “directed trust” concept and understand how these new positions may be used to enhance an estate […]

Decanting– Friend or Foe?

Maya Missaghi / October 5, 2018
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I recently went to a CLE conference on trusts and heard the word “decanting” thrown around. Naturally, my ears perked up because, well, I thought of wine or tea for that matter. But no. Turns out, irrevocable trusts can be decanted. Who knew? The definition of “decant” is: “gradually pour from one container into another, […]

Finding Fiduciaries: General Considerations, Part 1

James McNary / September 21, 2018
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Fiduciary selection is often given insufficient consideration in estate planning engagements. Too often the process of choosing a fiduciary is limited to the consideration of which family members are disqualified from acting as trustee; with little or no consideration of the skills required of a trustee. An attorney must help her client understand the fiduciary’s […]

Estate Planning for the Newly Divorced

Courtney Sebo / September 13, 2018
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  Divorce is a time of massive change.  Change in schedule, change in routine, change in living situation, change in dynamic, change in budget – you name it, it changes after a divorce.  Many divorcing couples do not understand, however, that divorce should also be accompanied by a change in estate plans.  (An estate plan […]

Millenials Need an Estate Plan, Too

Alexus Anderson / July 25, 2018
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I’m twenty-four.  I don’t have a home, a family I support, or any of the assets I typically see in an estate plan.  On top of that, I’m young and plan to live at least into my sixties, so what is the point in investing in an estate plan?  Over the past year learning more […]

Tidbit #57 on Life Insurance

Bob Cohen / July 12, 2018
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I read a lot. I much prefer non-fiction over fiction though the other day, the (very) fictitious article entitled, “Whole Life Insurance vs. 529 College Savings Plans…Who Wins?”, got my interest as no other piece of fiction that I can recall. The author’s position (which I deduced from the title alone), is that whole life […]

Succession – Episode 2

Jennifer Santini / June 29, 2018
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Spoiler Alert: This post contains spoilers from the second episode. Given how Episode 1 ended, I presumed the show would have to address the issue of health care agents and access to one’s medical records. Episode 2 begins with the Roy family gathered at the hospital dealing with the recent collapse of Logan. Early in […]

Succession – Episode 1

Jennifer Santini / June 11, 2018
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Spoiler Alert: This post contains spoilers from the first episode. HBO has begun airing a show called Succession, which, through some dark humor, provides examples of the importance of a proper estate plan. The first episode introduces us to the Roy family – led by patriarch Logan Roy, who is a media tycoon and about […]

MOM AND DAD, WE DON’T WANT TO CLEAN OUT YOUR HOUSE!!

George Byron (Geordie) Griffiths / June 8, 2018
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Top 5 tips for helping our aging parents (and clients) declutter A House Full of “Stuff” If you’re an adult with aging parents, chances are you’re probably going to be dealing with a house full of “stuff” in the near future. My dad still lives in the same house that he and my mom bought […]