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Boca Raton Estate Planning, Probate & Real Estate Blog

A guardianship can grant legal decision-making power

There are many positive things that come with age. Unfortunately, everyone eventually hits a point where faculties begin to fail and things get harder. This comes in many forms: for some it is in response to a medical procedure or treatment for disease, for others it may be a condition such as dementia or Alzheimer’s.

When a parent or loved one can no longer take care of themselves, it’s necessary for others to step in and help. To prevent fraud and abuse of vulnerable adults, the law is clear that only certain people can help with medical, legal or financial matters. If you want to help a loved one who needs it, you will need to explore your legal options first.

Ensuring others R.E.S.P.E.C.T. your wishes with an estate plan

Recently, legendary singer Aretha Franklin passed away. And almost as quickly as news of her death spread, reports that she died without a will or trust spread as well. 

While it seems strange that someone with such a massive fortune did not create an estate plan, unfortunately, this is not unusual. Many adults pass away without having any type of estate planning documents in place. When this happens, a person's wishes will have little or no bearing on the management of their estate.

4 key phrases you'll likely hear during probate proceedings

After a loved one passes away, the probate process begins. This can be a highly complicated and emotionally-wrought experience, especially when people are still coping with grief and loss, so it is important to have a basic understanding of what to expect.

Understanding some of the terminology used during probate can help you get a better handle on the Florida probate process. Below, we explain some of the more common terms people encounter during probate.

What is an escalation clause?

If you fall in love with a home and want to buy it, it is important to know that you could run into some competition from other potential buyers. As such, you want to make your offer as attractive as possible.

This could mean including an escalation clause, which is a clause that increases your offer by specific increments if the seller receives a higher offer.

What should I know about powers of attorney?

When people think about an estate plan, they typically think about wills and trusts. However, there are numerous other elements of a comprehensive estate plan, including powers of attorney.

Giving someone power of attorney means that you are giving them the authority to act on your behalf. Depending on the type of power of attorney, this means that someone else can make medical, financial or even business-related decisions if you cannot do so yourself. If powers of attorney are part of your estate plan -- and for most people, they should be -- then you should know some basic facts about how to do this.

Thinking about an unconventional will? Why you should think again

There are countless ways to connect and communicate with people today. We can send emails and texts, direct message someone on Facebook, send a letter through the mail or just pick up the phone and make a call.

While these are all effective ways to get a message to someone, they are not exactly sounds when it comes to sharing legal information. For instance, if you want to create a will or make end-of-life decisions, the way to do that is in a traditional legal document. If you opt for another route, you may not have the legal protection you think you have.

What happens during probate when a person didn't have a will?

On this blog, we have talked about what happens during probate when a person passes away with a will in place. However, not everyone has a will.

Under these circumstances, the probate process will follow state laws for distributing assets, appointing representatives and assigning guardians. Below, we look at what these laws say and what it means for family members.

Use caution when signing commercial leases with these provisions

Operating a business is demanding. Owners often have numerous responsibilities to juggle and goals to prioritize, and the fact is that few can do it alone. For instance, if you are looking for commercial property, you are likely focused on finding the space your business needs to be successful. You may not know the ins and outs of commercial leases or the terms of such agreements.

As such, it can be possible to overlook or misunderstand elements of your lease that could ultimately work against you, including those we discuss below.

How to avoid family drama with your estate plan

Family dynamics can be complicated. Perhaps you divorced and remarried, and you and your current spouse have children from former marriages. Or maybe you do not have children, and you plan to leave your estate to extended family. Even if you and your spouse have only been married to each other, relationships among siblings can be complex.

Naming heirs in your estate plans may leave some family members feeling slighted, and this could lead to complications after you pass on. If you do not want your estate to end up in court with your family fighting over it, you should consider doing these things when creating your estate plan.

Types of guardianships in Florida

When you're looking into guardianships in Florida, one thing you should know is that there are two different primary types: a voluntary guardianship as well as an involuntary guardianship. Voluntary guardianship is allowed for adults who are mentally competent but who may not be able to manage their own estates. These individuals can petition for the appointment of a guardian.

Involuntary guardianships are exactly what they sound like. The court will appoint a guardian to a person who is unable to make sound decisions or who is impaired to the point that the court believes guardianship is the best option for the person's safety and well-being.

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Peter J. Snyder, P.A. 21301 Powerline Rd #106 Boca Raton, FL 33433 Phone: 561-544-7324 Fax: 561-367-7322 Boca Raton Law Office Map

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