Monthly Archives:: December 2021

What Happens to Your Social Media Accounts at Your Death?

According to Statista, more than 295 million people in the United States use social media. If you are an avid social media user, have you considered what will happen to your accounts when you die? If you have spent time creating, uploading, and sharing content, it is essential to take a look now at what will happen after you pass away so you can determine your content’s future.

Because the process for each account is different, your loved ones must know what social media accounts you have and what your wishes are for their future after you have passed. By adequately laying out your wishes in your estate plan, you can guide your loved ones and reassurance that your legacy will live on. READ MORE

One of The Greatest Gifts To Your Family Is The Plan For Incapacity

Incapacity can be a temporary event from which you eventually recover, or it can be the start of a lengthy and costly affair that ultimately ends in your death. Indeed, incapacity can drag out over many years, leaving you and your family in an agonizing limbo. This uncertainty is what makes incapacity planning so incredibly important.

The goal of effective estate planning is to keep your family out of court and out of conflict no matter what happens to you. So if you only plan for your death, you’re leaving your family – and yourself – extremely vulnerable to potentially tragic consequences. READ MORE

All Good Things Must Come to an End: Reasons a Trust Might Terminate

The reasons why a trust might terminate can vary. Still, in general, termination occurs because the trust has accomplished its purpose, is no longer economically feasible, has distributed all its property, revoked, or is dissolved by the court because of a dispute or illegality.

A trust is a legal arrangement in which one person (the trustmaker) places their property in a trust and appoints someone (a trustee) to hold title to and manage the trust property for the benefit of one or more people (the beneficiaries). The property placed in a trust can be money, real estate, securities, business interests, insurance policies, and other types of assets. READ MORE

Why Putting Your Family Home In A Trust Is A Smart Move – Part 2

We explained how revocable living and irrevocable trusts work in part one. We discussed the process of transferring the legal title of your home into a trust to ensure it’s adequately funded. Here, in part two, we will outline the key advantages of using a trust to pass your home to your loved ones compared to other estate planning strategies.

One of the primary advantages of using a trust to pass on your home to your heirs is avoiding the court process known as probate. Unlike a will, assets held in trust do not have to go through probate. During probate, the court oversees the will’s administration, ensuring your assets are distributed according to your wishes, with automatic supervision to handle any disputes. READ MORE

Untangling Tangled Titles: Homeownership, Property Deeds, and Estate Planning

Do you own the home you live in?

If you are currently living in a property that you inherited, but the deed has not been transferred into your name, you may be surprised to learn that, under the law, you are technically not the owner. This legal situation is known as “tangled title.” A tangled title negatively impacts a property’s current occupant in several ways. It can also harm generational wealth and even contribute to fraud.

Most of their wealth is tied up in their home for many households. However, until a tangled title is resolved, you cannot take full advantage of your home’s value. Untangling a tangled title is often a complicated legal process that requires attorney assistance. There are costs, but not straightening out a title could be much higher in the long term.

Title and deed are legal terms used in real estate. The person who holds the title to a property is that property’s legal owner. A deed is a legal document used to transfer property ownership to another. Although a deed is an official written document, the title merely refers to the concept of ownership rights. You cannot hold a home’s title in your hands.

Titles can often get tangled in the intrafamily transfer of homeownership. A tangled title most commonly occurs when the person whose name is on the deed passes away and a surviving relative continues living in the home without their name being on the deed. READ MORE

Why Putting Your Family Home In A Trust Is A Smart Move – Part 1

A proper estate planning is as much a part of responsible homeownership as having homeowners insurance or keeping your home’s roof well maintained. When it comes to including your home in your estate plan, you have a variety of different planning vehicles to choose from, but for a variety of other reasons, putting your home in a trust is often the smartest choice. 

Although you should consult with us your Family Lawyer to identify the best estate planning strategies for your particular circumstances, in this two-part series, we’ll discuss how trusts work (both revocable and irrevocable), and then outline the most common advantages of using a trust to pass your home to your loved ones compared to other planning strategies. READ MORE

Decanting: Redoing Your Loved One’s Estate Plan

Decanting is an essential tool that emerged in some states in the last century. This tool is increasingly being used to remedy situations where a now-irrevocable trust needs to be fixed because of changing circumstances that appear to work contrary to the trustmaker’s intent.

Decanting gets its name from the practice of pouring wine from an old bottle into a new container, allowing the undesirable sediment or impurities to remain behind in the original container and the pure wine to be held in a much cleaner container, thereby enhancing the quality of the wine before consumption. Similarly, trust decanting aims to pour the trust property from an outdated or problematic trust into a newly drafted trust with the necessary improvements so that the beneficiaries can enjoy the trust property without the undesirable elements of the old trust. READ MORE

The Basics On NFTs: The Newest Cryptoverse Craze

An NFT is a cryptographic token on a blockchain in the most basic terms. It is used to establish proof of ownership of digital artwork, videos, GIFs, collectibles, and other digital assets. While NFTs use the same blockchain technology that underpins cryptocurrency, NFTs themselves are not a traditional currency, though they can operate similarly to currency. Some people call them JPGs because they are graphic images, but they represent much more than a simple JPG file.

NFTs have been generating a significant buzz in the tech and art sectors for years now. Still, after Christie’s auction house sold a single NFT collage from the digital artist Beeple for a staggering $69.3 million this March, NFTs have begun making mainstream headlines. READ MORE

Are Family Limited Partnerships under Attack?

An FLP is a business entity created under state law to hold and manage the property. It comprises partners that can be either individuals or other entities such as trusts and limited liability companies (LLCs). An FLP must have at least one general partner liable for the partnership’s debts and liabilities. The other partners can all be limited partners, which means they are personally insulated from liabilities arising within the partnership. The partnership is generally protected from liabilities that a limited partner may incur outside the partnership.

In an estate planning context, FLPs are often created when a parent or parents own property such as real estate or business interests that they would like to retain control and management of but at the same time want to begin the process of transferring to their children for transfer tax purposes. The parents can form the FLP with themselves (or another entity such as an LLC they own) as the general partner and name their children (or trusts created for their children’s benefit) as limited partners. READ MORE