In my last blog post, I discussed what to do immediately upon a loved one dying. In this article, I am going to discuss what to do later, after the funeral.
Locate Will or Trust Agreement. The Will or … Read more
My mother died recently, so I know what to do when a loved one dies. But she was 92 years old and had been in a nursing home for more than a year. Two weeks before her death, she was … Read more
In the last month, two clients have received letters regarding sweepstake winnings – and each showed signs of a well-conceived scam. One for $850,000 and the other for $600,000. Both clients are in their mid 80’s; both deny being elderly.… Read more
What is probate?
Probate is the court supervised procedure for transferring ownership of an individual’s assets after death.
Why not go through probate?
First of all, it is slow (1 to 3 years). Second of all, it is costly – … Read more
On January 13, 2016, several Iowa State Bar Association (ISBA) leaders met with State Representatives to discuss upcoming bills for the new legislative year. One bill, SF 376/HSB 37, proposes to limit the property used to calculate court costs during … Read more
For 2016, the estate and gift tax exemption is $5.45 million per individual, up from $5.43 million in 2015. That means an individual can leave $5.45 million to heirs and pay no federal estate or gift tax.… Read more
More than five years ago, I set up a revocable trust for one of my clients who I will call “Carol” (because that’s her name). She transferred her condo to the trust. That was the only asset in her trust.… Read more
Continually I have clients ask me “What happened to my inheritance?” Here are a few answers to that question:
There is a Will, but the assets do not pass under the Will. My client’s mother died last month and, before … Read more
As stated in a new Iowa Supreme Court case, under Iowa law, you have no rights whatsoever as to what happens to your bodily remains. So even if you go to the funeral home and make arrangements, and even … Read more
Section 633.198 sets the ceiling for probate fees in the state of Iowa. The maximum fee is as follows:
For the first one thousand dollars, six percent;
For the overplus between one and five thousand dollars, four percent;
For all … Read more
Reversing a lower court, Massachusetts’ highest court ruled that two Medicaid applicants’ trusts were not available assets even though the applicants retained the right to use the houses that were put into the trusts. Daley v. Secretary of the Executive … Read moreRead More
Every adult is assumed to be capable of making his or her own decisions unless a court determines otherwise. If an adult becomes incapable of making responsible decisions due to a mental disability, the court will appoint a substitute decision … Read moreRead More