• Find Legal Articles
Expert Witnesses

Oklahoma Legal Articles

Law related articles writen by lawyers
and experts witnesses practicing in Oklahoma



Hemsley Case Underscores Value of Probate Avoidance

When you hear or read about the term "probate avoidance" you may wonder exactly what probate is and why anybody would want to avoid it.

Transferring Assets? The Tax Man Looms

The gift tax exists because of the fact that people logically transfer assets to their future heirs while they are still alive in order to avoid the estate tax at their death

Why You Need a Will or Trust

State law governs the distribution of your estate if you do not have a will or trust in place. Did you know that your spouse may receive only 1/3 of your estate when your pass away? Intestacy is the process governing the distribution of you estate should you pass away without a will or trust. In Oklahoma, the default rule for a family (with no step-children), is that only 1/3 of your estate will pass to your spouse if you unexpectedly pass away; the rest will pass to your children.

Three Estate Planning Instruments You Need Right Now

Depending on your needs, estate planning may be a simple or complex process. We believe that these three instruments are essential to protecting your loved ones and estate, should you become incapacitated or pass away unexpectedly. Regardless of the size of your estate, there are three estate planning instruments you should establish today.

Can Creditors Attack a Family Member's Inheritance?

It is a good idea to think things all the way through when you are engaged in the process of inheritance planning. Getting resources into the hands of your loved ones is of course the goal, but you would do well to consider the personality traits and financial capabilities of the people who will be receiving inheritances.

DIY Legal Documents Objectively Examined

Oklahoma City estate planning attorneys are licensed to provide legal services to their clients. They are bound by professional guidelines. That means you have a high degree of certainty that the documents that are prepared by a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association will stand up under the scrutiny of the probate court.

Achieve Three Objectives With Alaska Trusts

It is nice to be able to achieve multiple objectives through a single action and in many cases this can be done in the financial planning field. For those who are seeking asset protection, income, and estate tax benefits, Alaska trusts may be just one of these very efficient multipurpose tools.

Recent NBER Findings Can Provide Motivation

Sometimes you can be motivated by the difficulties that others have experienced and avoid the pitfalls that led them into unenviable positions. With this in mind we would like to highlight the findings of a study of interest to the elder law community that was recently conducted by experts associated with the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Early Action Leads to Comfortable Retirement

When you are a young adult you have a unique opportunity. You can make the choice to begin saving for retirement early on during your career. If you do you will be very happy about making that decision later on.

Help Relatives Now, Reduce Future Tax Burden

Success is the name of the game, but unfortunately the fruition of your financial goals can present some tax challenges. If your assets exceed a certain amount after you pass away your heirs are potentially subject to the Federal estate tax.

Pending Loss of Estate Tax Portability A Concern

When this year comes to a close we are going to be looking at an entirely different lay of the land when it comes to the estate tax parameters. With this in mind we would like to examine the subject of estate tax exclusion portability. What does portability mean in this context?

Be it Ever so Humble…

As you live in your home over the years, you can become attached because so many memories seem to be ingrained into the very structure itself. You also may feel totally comfortable and have everything arranged according to your tastes. That idea resonates with people of all ages.

Record Your Wishes to Reflect Current Relationships

People who get divorced are not remarrying with the same frequency that they did some years ago according to current census statistics. This of course does not mean that they are not entering into relationships with the same level of frequency.

Identity Thieves, Scam Artists Often Target Elders

There are things that can be done to protect your assets during the latter stages of your life from a legal perspective, and you should discuss your options with a good Oklahoma City elder law attorney. At the same time, each individual must take personal responsibility to protect your assets and yourself. Awareness is key, and one growing problem that seniors must protect themselves against is elder financial abuse.

Debt Reduction Can Lead to Stress-Free Future

One of the things that people look forward to when they envision retirement is the ability to live stress-free. Try as you might, it can be very challenging to keep stress at bay when you are fully engaged in your working years. Putting the tension behind you while you kick back and live simply as a retired individual can certainly be a pleasing prospect.

Tax Hikes Loom

Oklahoma City estate planning attorneys are always reminding their clients to stay in touch because the initial estate plan is like a snapshot whereas estate planning as a whole is an ongoing motion picture of sorts. As things change, the estate plan that you previously constructed may need to be updated – something to keep in mind every step of the way.

Who is Going to Handle Your Final Arrangements

You have to think things all the way through in order to find the motivation that you need to stop procrastinating and finally start making preparations for the future. If you asked a random sampling of individuals about the things that are most important to them, “family” would probably be at the top of the list for the majority of the respondents.

Oklahoma City Trust Administration Basics

When you evaluate the basic anatomy of a revocable living trust you see that there are three principal players. We would like to break it down in a very rudimentary manner for you here.

Your Last Will: The Human Element

When you think about a Last Will, the act of stating your wishes in writing is probably the thing that comes to mind. However, there is more to it than simply letting everyone know how you would like your resources to be distributed after your passing.

Prepare to Address Assisted Living Expenses

Keeping your fingers crossed while hoping for the best is no substitute for intelligent planning when you are considering the eventualities of aging. As the Baby Boomers reach retirement age, studies show that a high percentage of them are unprepared.

Will Your Pets Have a Home?

It is a good idea to work from a checklist when you are trying to make sure that you have all your bases covered when creating an estate plan.

Probate Expenses Can Pack a Wallop

Many people equate the process of estate planning with the act of drawing up a last will. You may go this route if you choose to, but it is important to recognize that the probate court will be involved. While the estate is hung up in probate, interested parties who may have business with the estate will have an opportunity to seek payment.

Estate Tax Exposure

A lot of people call the federal estate tax the "death tax, “and many consider it a sarcastic term. Some probably do use it in this spirit, but the reality is that there is literal truth in this description.The assets that you accumulated throughout your life after paying taxes are sitting safely in the bank or otherwise invested.

Many Benefit From Charitable Remainder Unitrusts

When you are exposed to the estate tax you have to make a serious commitment to gain estate tax efficiency. There are a number of ways you may achieve this, and the best strategy will vary depending on the nature of your assets and what exactly you are trying to achieve. This is one of the reasons why it is a good idea to retain the services of a savvy estate planning attorney.

Avoiding Will Challenges

One of the things you should take into consideration when planning your estate is how your family members, or former family members, may feel about your wishes. Of course you have every right to leave your assets in any manner you see fit. But to make sure that the rightful heirs to your estate don't run into problems after your death you need to do what is necessary to avoid challenges.

Estate Planning: Don't Be Among the Unprepared Masses

Your would probably be surprised if you heard that someone died without leaving behind a last will or some other type of estate planning document directing distribution of his or her assets. Many people view estate planning as a simple, basic responsibility that everyone has to engage in for the well-being of their family members. So for many it comes as a surprise to learn that not everyone understands how important it is to have an estate plan in place.

Reducing the Taxable Value of Your Home

When you are inventorying your assets in anticipation of distributing them to your loved ones after your death you may find that your home is your single most valuable asset.

Seniors on Social Security to See Increase in 2012

Living on a fixed income can be difficult, and this is one of the reasons why it is so very important to engage in retirement planning.

Estate Tax Relief to Expire in 2013

If we said 2010 was an interesting year in the field of estate planning it would be a gross understatement.

Massive Numbers of Baby Boomers Retiring Unprepared

There are those who hear retirement planning attorneys say that it is important to make preparations for retirement but let this advice go in one ear and out the other.

Cost of Long-Term Care Should Not Be Underestimated

When you are looking over the horizon toward your active retirement years and beyond you have to make estimates regarding your anticipated expenses.

Estate Tax & the Gift Tax Exemption

The most significant source of asset erosion you have to be prepared for when planning your estate is the estate tax. If you have never looked into the subject, you may be surprised to hear just how high the rate of this tax actually is.

Ignore Your Retirement at Your Own Risk

There are those who are under the impression that they will somehow automatically retire when they reach their mid-60s. They think that they will enjoy their golden years and all of the free time they will have on their hands.

Estate Planning is a Reactive, Dynamic Process

It is not uncommon for people to procrastinate before they put an estate plan in place, and they do this for a variety of different reasons. Perhaps the most common one is the simple fact that they feel as though they have plenty of time before the matter is truly relevant. While it is true that the average life expectancy in the United States as of this writing is 78.4 years, it is probably not a good idea to wait until you are 75 to begin to plan your estate.

Response To Estate Tax Educational Gifts

You may have heard that the estate tax exclusion was raised to $5 million with a maximum tax rate of 35% as a result of the passage of the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010.

Gift Giving, Medicaid, and the Estate Tax

A lot is said about the complexities of estate planning, but in the end it is a relatively simple matter.

The Elderly and Dangerous Medication Mishaps

When it comes to medication and the elderly, it is not uncommon for dangerous mishaps to occur.

Three Reasons to Avoid Probate

Most people are aware of the fact that the last will is the most commonly utilized vehicle of asset transfer in the field of estate planning.

Why You Need the Services of a Personal Injury Lawyer

Accidents are inevitable and will always happen. Motorists are always involved in collisions leaving the parties gravely injured. Accidents do not only happen on the road; they can take place anywhere. The best way to protect yourself in the event of an accident is to know what legal remedies are available for you. There are steps in order to seek compensation when an accident takes place leaving you severe injuries.

Estate Planning Strategy for Small Business Succession

When you are in a small business partnership with others you must approach estate planning differently than those who don't have assets tied up in a business.

Comprehensive Planning Includes Advanced Health Care Directives

Estate planning centers around the preparation of assets for distribution to your loved ones after your passing. However, if you want to be comprehensively prepared for any and all contingencies that may arise there are some other things to take into consideration as well. One of these is the possibility of falling into an incapacitated state that renders you incapable of making medical decisions for yourself.

Gift Tax Exemptions

There are gifts that you can give to people, other than your spouse, that are not subject to the Federal Gift Tax

Should Your Child Inherit Money While They Are Young?

Once your child reaches 18 years of age, they are legally considered to be an adult

Choosing a Guardian for Your Minor Children

For parents of young children, the most important element of the estate plan is choosing a guardian for them

Powers of Attorney & Incapacitation

Many people think about estate planning as being a purely financial matter, but if you are serious about planning for the future it is important to consider all of the legal ramifications of aging.

Addressing Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums

One of the elder law issues that is very challenging for many people is the cost of long-term care.

Estate Planning for Parents of Young Children

Nobody knows what tomorrow will bring and parents of young children should especially be cognizant of that fact.

Things to Keep in Mind before Filing Your Bankruptcy Petition

Before you declare bankruptcy, you'll want to make sure you have everything you need in order. What will you need to file, and what Chapter works for you? In this article are just some of the commonly asked questions about bankruptcy.

Tragic Truck Accident Effects Change in Oklahoma

Currently, the posted maximum speed on the Will Rogers Turnpike is 75 mph. If passed, Garrison’s bill would reduce the maximum legal speed for commercial drivers from 75 mph to 65 mph.

Modification of Custody Orders

Why Modify a Custody Order



Find a Local Lawyer