In the News – The Estate of James Brown

Jennifer Santini / December 14, 2014
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It will be the 8th anniversary of James Brown’s death on Christmas of this year and yet his estate still has not been administered according to his wishes in his Will. As we have witnessed with other celebrity estates, Mr. Brown’s estate is locked up in disputes between family members contesting the Will, fiduciaries’ decisions, […]

Helping Families Today, Tomorrow & for the Future Generations – Part 1

Anne Denny / December 10, 2014
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As trusted advisors, attorneys and financial advisors, you are uniquely poised to coach individuals and families on the merits of preparing thoughtfully for end-of-life decisions. Most likely, posing questions regarding a client’s financial assets and estate intentions is part of your everyday practice. But ask yourself: Are you comfortable engaging clients in deep, probing conversation […]

Getting Your Second Chance: Expungements

James Gempeler / December 8, 2014
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Effective January 1, 2015, the expungement law is changing dramatically in Minnesota to the benefit of those that continue to be hamstrung by their criminal past. The end result is that more Minnesotans will finally get a meaningful remedy when they successfully petition for an expungement. Expungement Basics An expungement is a court-ordered sealing of […]

Don’t Delay! To-Do List for the End of the Year

Jennifer Santini / December 2, 2014
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It is hard to believe we are at that time of year again when a new year will be upon us in only a matter of days. The countdown is on – only 30 days until 2015. Here are a few reminders of things to do before we say goodbye to 2014. Take Your Required […]

Qualified Small Business Deduction

Jamie Held / November 26, 2014
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The Qualified Small Business Deduction (“QSBD”) under Minn. Stat. § 291.03, provides an additional deduction for Minnesota estate tax purposes for the value of qualified small business property passing to a qualified heir. The statute was originally enacted in 2011 (and has subsequently been updated).

Minnesota Homestead Classification

Jayne Sykora / November 20, 2014
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In Minnesota, many homeowners can qualify their primary residences for homestead status. By classifying a piece of property as a homestead, the property may qualify for a reduced classification rate, a reduced taxable market value, a property tax refund, and/or other special program eligibility. To qualify for homestead status, the following criteria must be met: […]

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 […]

Is Your Estate Plan Too Specific?

Jennifer Santini / November 12, 2014
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Estate planners do encourage clients to be specific with their various bequests within their estate plan. When describing gifts of both real and tangible personal property or defining beneficiaries, we want the assets and individuals to be identifiable. However, it can actually cause problems when clients get too specific and potentially lead to unintended complications […]

Small Business Succession Planning – Things to Consider

Phillip Christenson / November 6, 2014
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What is Succession Planning? Simply put, succession planning is the process of transitioning key people within a business so that the business can continue to operate after the owner or key executives leave. Think of it as planning for the future of the business so that it can outlive the owners. This process involves a […]

Conservatorship Basics: Part II

Jayne Sykora / November 4, 2014
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Last week, in Conservatorship Basics Part I, I discussed what a conservatorship is, who can be a conservator and the process for getting a conservatorship in place. In today’s post, I will cover a conservator’s duties and powers and when and how a conservatorship is terminated. Conservator’s Duties Once a conservator is in place, a […]

Conservatorship Basics: Part 1

Jayne Sykora / October 29, 2014
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Oftentimes, most have heard of and have a basic understanding of a guardianship (whether for a minor child or for an incapacitated adult). A guardianship allows for another to be appointed as guardian over the person of an incapacitated person (the ward). In this role, a guardian is to care for, monitor and speak on […]

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