The music world was shocked when Tom Petty died of a prescription drug overdose in 2017. None took the news harder than the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer’s widow and two daughters from a previous marriage. In the months that followed, there were million-dollar lawsuits and countersuits as the three fought for control of the estate and determining how to create the trust outlined in the estate plan.
The loss of a loved one is rarely easy, particularly if the death was unexpected. Ideally, the decedent worked with a knowledgeable estate law attorney to draft a will, trust or other estate planning tools, but even with this planning, however, the probate process here in Florida can become delayed.
Probate can be an expensive and time-consuming process in Florida by dictating when, where and how to distribute a person's assets after their death. Surviving family members and other interested parties can trigger a probate process over the distribution of the deceased person's estate.
Many people will mourn the loss of a loved one, but they often will take solace if the decedent bequests or gifts money or assets to them. Sometimes, however, these thoughtful gestures are actually more trouble for the prospective beneficiary than if they had never received them. In these circumstances, renunciation of the gift may be the smart course of action. This can be done for any reason but is often done for tax purposes.
Millions of Americans carry debt, and many people will pass away owing at least some money. This could be in the form of a mortgage, credit card debts, personal loans or other types of liabilities.
Serving as the personal representative of an estate is a major responsibility. And despite the fact that it often involves complex legal and financial elements, the people who often serve as a personal representative are not people with legal or financial backgrounds. Instead, they are often loved ones who were close to the decedent and understood his or her wishes.
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.
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.
There is an old saying that you can't choose your family. In the context of estate planning, however, you can choose the family to whom you leave your assets. For some people, this might include choosing to leave someone out of a will so that he or she does not benefit from any gift or inheritance.
If you are like millions of other Americans, you have some debt. You might have credit card debts, student loans to repay or a mortgage and car to pay off. If you have these and other debts when you pass away, they won't just disappear, so it is important to know what happens to debt after a person's death.