Disposition of Remains: A Difficult, but Necessary Discussion

Erin Hoolihan / April 30, 2013
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What happens when one dies without a Health Care Directive and has specific wishes regarding the disposition of his or her body? What happens when a dispute occurs amongst remaining loved ones who have differing opinions about the disposition of the deceased’s body? These are important questions to examine when considering whether or not to […]

Pre-Planning for Death: Part 3

Jill Sauber / November 9, 2012
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This is the final post in a three part series on pre-planning for your death. In the first part, terms related to pre-planning for your death were defined. In the second part, exactly what happens to your remains after you die was covered. Now, steps to pre-planning your funeral will be discussed. This series is […]

Pre-Planning for Death: Part 2

Jill Sauber / October 24, 2012
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This is the second in a three part series on pre-planning for your death. In the first part, terms related to pre-planning for your death were defined. In this part, exactly what happens to your remains after you die will be covered. Finally, steps to pre-planning your funeral will be discussed. This series is written […]

Pre-Planning for Death: Part 1

Jill Sauber / October 2, 2012
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This is the first in a three part series on pre-planning for your death. This series is written by Jill Sauber, a current law student and licensed mortician.    People often segue into talking about their own mortality or death by saying, “if something happens to me.” As though stating it in terms of “maybe” […]

QR Codes … for Estate Planning?

Jamie Held / August 3, 2012
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QR codes, those squares made of square dots arranged in a pattern that you scan with your smart phone, are popping up everywhere these days.  Consequently, I was not at all surprised when I saw a story on the local CBS evening news … QR Codes On Headstones: Preserving Personalities Of Those Passed.

Mom, Dad, are your financial affairs in order?

Jamie Held / July 13, 2012
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While speaking to clients regarding their estate plan, the topic of conversation often shifts to … “I wonder if my parents have done any planning?” As we get further into the discussion of expenses – the cost of funerals, burials, cremation, estate administration, etc., I regularly hear … “I am concerned about my parents’ financial […]

What Happens To Debt At Death?

Jayne Sykora / March 1, 2011
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Since I am an estate planning attorney, clients, family, friends, and even strangers, often ask about what happens to any debt they may have at their deaths. Most often, people are concerned about whether loved ones will “inherit” debt. The short answer is that your estate is responsible for paying off the balance of any […]

A Brief Overview of the History of Funerals

Jayne Sykora / January 25, 2011
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Death may be universal, but how it has been handled varies significantly from culture to culture. Below is a very small sampling: Ancient Egypt Funerals, or the rituals surrounding death, were at the heart of public life in ancient Egypt. The pyramids, Valley of the Kings, and King Tut’s tomb are all evidence of the […]

Laid to Rest in a Casket for All of Eternity? Not Necessarily. . .

Jayne Sykora / December 7, 2010
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For those that wish to be buried as opposed to cremated, take note that there are many options available for your burial, at least if you want to be buried in Minnesota. Minnesota statutes do not require an embalming procedure, a casket, or any type of outside burial container. Instead, cemeteries make their own regulations.  So […]

Benefits for Veterans and Servicemembers

Tyler White / November 11, 2010
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People join the military for a variety of reasons. For some, enlisting is a family tradition. Others join out of a strong sense of patriotism. And some folks have just watched too many war movies as a kid. Personally, the benefits were one of the many reasons I joined the military. I knew I wanted […]