Litigation: The Power of Process

Dave Burns / June 26, 2017
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Litigation has been glorified — and fictionalized — in movies and on television since those media came into existence: the courtroom drama Perry Mason was the first-ever weekly one-hour series filmed for television. In real life, however, litigation is often criticized as a time-consuming, costly, and unnecessary process. Of course, litigation can be expensive and […]

Millennials vs. Baby-Boomers: Selling an Outdated House in Today’s Real Estate Market

Eric Hopf / August 4, 2016
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The Problem There is a great divide in the current real estate market caused by the large percentage of homes being sold by baby-boomers and older generations or their heirs. Many of these homes are outdated and unappealing to Millennials and Gen Xers, who comprise 61% of all buyers and more than 80% of first-time […]

PROBATE CODE UPDATES

Emma Maddy / June 20, 2016
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Starting August 1, 2016, the amounts available under the Minnesota Probate Code (Minn. Stat. Ch. 524) for a number of issues will be adjusted for the first time in more than 25 years. These issues include the family allowance, collection of personal property by affidavit, and spousal intestate share with children from a previous relationship. […]

Year-End Estate Planning To-Do List

Manish Bhatia / December 5, 2015
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The end of the year is an ideal time to review your current estate plan and confirm that you are taking advantage of all planning opportunities available to you. This includes not only tax planning, but also asset protection, probate avoidance, beneficiary designations and changes in your family and financial situations. On the other hand, […]

10 Things you must do before you die! (Not another bucket list article)

Phillip Christenson / November 4, 2015
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Bucket Lists have grown in popularity in the last few years. While it might seem important that you go skydiving, and swim with the dolphins before you die I would suggest taking a look at the below list and giving these items priority. Many of these items have been discussed in detail in other posts […]

Conversion of an Exempt Asset

Jennifer Santini / October 27, 2015
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As I wrote in my past article, Hands Off, Creditors!, when someone passes away intestate in Minnesota there are several assets that pass to a surviving spouse and/or children free from claims and creditors. As a reminder, those assets are: The homestead (under Minn. Stat. §524.2-402); Exempt property, which includes one vehicle (regardless of value) […]

Nuts and Bolts of Real Estate Filings in Minnesota for Estates and Trusts Professionals

Jeff Miller / October 14, 2015
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As a freelance probate and estate planning legal assistant/paralegal (call me what you like) I work with a lot of real estate documents.  Most commonly I’m involved in preparing and recording… Quit Claim Deeds transferring property into a trust; Deeds of Distribution distributing property out of an estate; Trustee’s Deeds (along with an accompanying Certificate […]

Pros & Cons of Joint Tenancy

Emma Maddy / August 11, 2015
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A comprehensive estate plan deals with multiple types of property; from probate assets that pass through your will, to non-probate assets that pass outside a will via a trust or beneficiary designation, to jointly held assets, which pass automatically at the time of the first death. One of the most common joint assets people hold […]

Painless Probate: Closing Informally

Kassandra Heinrich / March 19, 2015
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I really don’t know how probate got such a bad reputation, but in my experience it isn’t that bad. As other contributors to Epilawg have noted (see for example: Estate Planning Myth #6: I Must Avoid Probate), Probate can be a pretty painless process. Closing an Informal Probate illustrates that point perfectly. In 3 easy […]

Privacy and your estate plan

Maggie Green / January 19, 2015
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The British government announced recently that 4 million historical wills have been digitized and are now available for download by the public. As in the United States, these documents were previously available by traveling to the probate court and searching the available public records. Now anyone with an internet connection and a credit card can […]

Intestate succession for a blended family

Maggie Green / November 18, 2014
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A married couple, of which each spouse has children from previous relationships, faces certain issues with regard to distribution of their estates. The most basic of these issues involves what happens if a spouse dies without a will. When any individual dies without a will, the statutory rules for the intestate succession dictate the distribution of […]