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Recent Posts in Inheritance Category

When a CA senior with a joint bank account dies, do the funds belong to the decedent's estate or the co-signer?

California courts have long grappled with this issue -- when a California senior dies with joint bank account, who does the money belong to? Is it the decedent's estate, or the surviving joint ...
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Can my Will leave a gift to someone on the condition that he or she get divorced?

In California, probably not. It's fairly common for a person to want to leave an inheritance to someone, "but not if he or she is still married to that monster." A gift conditioned on ...
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Did Mickey Rooney's widow really contest her late husband's Will?

Yes. According to her attorney, Mickey Rooney's widow just filed a contest of her late husband's Will, in the probate department of the Los Angeles Superior Court. The complete story can be ...
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California Supreme Court determines No-Contest Clause Unenforceable

In its most recent ruling about wills and trusts, the California Supreme Court in Donkin v. Donkin (December 26, 2013) ruled that a challenge to a Trust does not trigger the Trust's ...
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Do your New Year's resolutions include estate planning?

The untimely deaths of some celebrities ( Paul Walker, James Gandolfini and Cory Monteith, to name a few) in 2013 underscore the need to create your estate plan now. So is one of your 2014 resolutions ...
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I'm a Trustee. How may days before I have to send the §16061.7 notice?

In most cases, California Probate Code §16061.7 requires that the Trustee send the Notification by Trustee within 60 days of the triggering event (usually the death of the Trust's Settlor). ...
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What is a §16061.7 notice?

Under Section 16061.7 of the California Probate Code, certain Trustees are required to send a legal notice to the Trust's beneficiaries and other interested parties. In estate planning law, this ...
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"Portability" - what's that got to do with the new 2013 IRS Estate Tax Return?

The IRS recently released its new Form 706, U.S. Estate Tax Return, here: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f706.pdf Thanks to the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA), and its new $5.25 million ...
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Do I need a Living Trust?

We get this question a lot. And the California State Bar Foundation (one of our favorite providers of free, easy-to-read consumer guides on many legal subjects) does a good job providing the answer: ...
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Can the County reassess my property taxes like that?

Can the County Assessor reassess our property taxes, if all we did is change a joint tenancy to a tenancy-in-common? The short answer? Yes (according to at least one California court). The ...
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How long should a California probate case take?

In California, probate court cases last about 1 year. But it's not unusual for it to take longer. Here's why: In most counties, it takes 4 to 8 weeks before the court will hear a Petition for ...
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Probate court costs how much?

You may have heard that Probate Court in California costs a bundle, but is it really that much? The short answer is: probably. Under California Law (CA Probate Code §§10800-10810 to be ...
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Want your heirs to get along? Talk to them.

Do you want your heirs to get along? An estate plan works best when every beneficiary knows in advance who'll inherit what, and why. It's important to tell your heirs, especially your adult ...
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Eureka! California's Unclaimed Property Law

Are you looking for lost money? Believe it or not, you could be one of millions of Californians who is owed money by the State. The California State Controller's Office acquires hundreds of ...
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Major IRS Ruling on Estate Tax and Legal, Same-sex Marriages

WASHINGTON — In response to the June 26 th #SCOTUS decision invalidating a key provision of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, two weeks ago the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal ...
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Free California Statutory Will

Do you need a California Will, but can't afford the legal fees? The California State Bar publishes a FREE, statutory Will that you can complete yourself. It can be found in California Probate Code ...
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Top 3 Reasons Parents Disinherit Children

No joke -- these are the top 3 reasons parents tell us why they are choosing to disinherit a child: He/she never writes or calls. He/she married a monster. He/she never paid back our personal loan. Oh ...
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Agoura Hills estate planning, probate & trust attorneys

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