Estate Planning Law Articles

Articles written by lawyers and expert witnesses worldwide
explaining the different aspects of Estate Planning.

Inheritance Laws

  By HG.org
Inheritance laws are determined on the state level. These laws come into effect when the person who died left no will or his or her will is...
FIND LEGAL ARTICLES

The Disadvantages of a Living Trust

  By HG.org
Many financial service providers spout the advantages of a trust, promising that trusts can be used as an asset protection tool and can help...

Don’t Neglect these Issues that Could Deplete Your Estate

Individuals need to take the following often-neglected but important issues into consideration when developing an estate plan or they risk...

Are Lawyers Who Draft Wills Negligent for Failing to Verify Ownership of Property?

Let’s look at the Alberta case of Meier v. Rose[1] to see how the Honourable Madam Justice J.H. Goss addressed the issue of whether lawyers who...

Can Unconscionable Behaviour Disentitle a Dependant to Support?

Imagine a woman is so infuriated with her husband for his philandering, gambling and drinking that she disinherits him. Upon her demise, the...

How to Execute a Will in Spain

The Spanish legal system establishes three main forms of wills: holographic wills, open wills and closed wills.

Components of a Good Estate Plan

A thorough estate plan should be designed to avoid probate, save on estate taxes, appoint someone to act for you if you become disabled, and...

What Is the Process of Probate?

  By HG.org
The probate process is the legal process that is undertaken after a person dies. This process helps to identify the individual’s rightful...

Can I Avoid Probate?

  By HG.org
Probate is a process in which a person’s final affairs are wrapped up, debts are paid off and any remaining assets are distributed according to...

In Canada, Depending on where You Live Parents’ Moral Obligations to Children Entitle Them to an Inheritance

British Columbia yes – Ontario maybe. Based on a case called Tataryn, British Columbia courts will, in many circumstances, ensure that...

What Are the Laws of Intestacy?

  By HG.org
The laws of intestacy are the default rules that are followed to dispose of a person’s probate estate after he or she dies. These laws are based...

Holographic Wills: Pros and Cons

  By HG.org
Having a will helps prevent a testator’s estate from passing through the laws of intestacy. However, if the will is not executed properly, these...

Digital Assets in Estate Planning

  By HG.org
Many individuals account for their real estate, securities and tangible property as part of their estate plan. However, much of people’s lives...

Does My Will Have to Be Witnessed?

  By HG.org
Wills allow individuals to avoid the state’s rules about who gets what portion of a decedent’s estate. They also allow individuals to name their...

What is a Statement of Succession

A statement of Succession “Dichiarazione di Successione” is required whether the deceased is intestate or has, through an Italian Will,...

How Do Inheritance Rights Vary Between Legitimate and Illegitimate Children?

  By HG.org
Once, expectant parents were quite concerned about marrying before a child was born in order to protect that child's claims to legitimacy. There...

Contributing to Your Grandchildren's Future

When estate planning, gifting assets to your grandchildren can do more than help your descendants get a good start in life; it can also reduce...

Can Domestic Contracts Prevent Dependant's Relief Claims?

There is interplay between sections of the Family Law Act (“FLA”), and those of the Succession Law Reform Act (“SLRA”), in particular as it...

What is the Legal Relevance of Power of Attorney?

Although you may be familiar with the words “Power of Attorney” you may not have a full understanding of the concept. In order to shed some more...

Who Will Have Custody of Your Children in Ontario, Canada

Is it up to you who will have custody of your children after your death? Not necessarily.

The Duties of a Trustee: How to Choose, How to Prepare

It is not unusual for a family member to be named as trustee for a trust that benefits a number of other family members. However, just because...

Setting up Your Wills and Trusts with an Estate Attorney

If you or someone you love is planning their estate, it can be a difficult and complicated process trying to wade through all the legal rules...

The Cyprus International Trust

The Cyprus International Trust is a powerful asset protection tool because it effectively removes the assets from a less favorable jurisdiction,...

6 Circumstances where a Trust Will Serve You Better than a Will

A will is the cornerstone of a complete Florida estate plan, and may be useful for anyone with assets that they wish to pass along to others, as...

What Are the Requirements of a Valid Will?

  By HG.org
In order for a will to be valid, it must comply with certain legal formalities. There are dire consequences of a will not following these...

How Do Inheritance Laws Work?

  By HG.org
Someone has passed away and that person's friends, family, and loved ones are left to sort out what to do with the things that are left behind....

Is Medicaid Planning Necessary?

What American doesn’t fear that they may end up in a nursing home when they become older? This not only means a great loss of personal...

What is the Difference Between a Will-based Plan and a Trust-based Plan?

Explaining the differences between a Will-based plan and a Trust-based plan so you can make an educated decision for your family about what is...

Will my Designated Beneficiary Receive the Proceeds from my Life Insurance Policy?

The answer should be yes, but if you have had major life events in your family, such as births, adoptions, divorce, marriage, or deaths, your...

Inherited IRAs and Creditor Protection

Your IRA is protected from creditors if you have to file bankruptcy, but what happens to that IRA if you die and leave it to a child? Many...

Michigan Court Rules that Biological Relationship Not Necessary to Inherit as a Child

When is a child a child? The Michigan Court of Appeals has ruled that it is not necessary to establish a biological relationship in order to be...

It's the New Year, is Your Estate Plan up to Date?

Now that the ball has dropped and toasts have been made, did you make a New Year’s Resolution? While many people make resolutions, very few make...

New Rules for Estate Recovery in Wisconsin

In 2014, the rules regulating the Wisconsin Estate Recovery program were updated to allow Medicaid and other long-term care insurance programs...

What Are My Rights Under Community Property Distribution?

  By HG.org
While the majority of states require that assets be distributed in an equitable division upon divorce, community property states view all...

Duties and Role of an Executor

Your friend calls you up one day and says that he is writing his will. He asks if you will be willing to serve as executor. What should you say?...

Why Everyone Should Have a Will

Everyone should have a will to ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes. Since the purpose of a will is to make clear...

Last Call for Non Resident Tax in Spain

If you own a property in Spain and you are non resident at tax purposes here, you are obliged to present and pay the Non Resident Tax Return,...

What Is a Power of Attorney and Healthcare Proxy?

  By HG.org
When a person hears the term “estate planning,” he or she often thinks about devising a will and maybe setting up a trust. For the most part,...

What Do You Do if There is a Nil Rate Band Trusts in a British Will?

Nil Rate Band trusts were often included in British Wills made before October 2007. Now they are no longer needed for inheritance tax planning....

What Are the Benefits of a Living Revocable Trust?

  By HG.org
Many individuals choose to use a living revocable trust as part of their estate plan or for other purposes. Such trusts provide distinct...

Family Limited Partnerships and Divorce: Structuring the Division

Family Limited Partnerships can present unique challenges in divorce litigation relative to the division of property and debt. It is vital to...

Inheritance Law in Turkey

The rising number of marriages between Turkish citizens and foreigners brings in issues related to marriages of this type. From a legal point of...

Child Emancipation and Disability in Colorado

Colorado child emancipation and disability cases can be complicated ones. This article addresses the basic issues with respect to state law.

Legal Guide for Purchasing Real Estate in Turkey

Buying property is one of the best ways to make an investment in Turkey whether it is for your personal use or commercial activities, bearing in...

Reverse Mortgages Should be the Last Resort for Senior Citizens

Reverse mortgages may not be as beneficial to seniors as one may think. Learn more about the associated risks before taking out a reverse...

Estate Planning - Is a Trust Right for You?

Determining whether a Trust is right for you and your family can be a difficult decision. There are many factors which come into play and no...

Inheritance Issues- Family Not Cooperating, What Are My Options?

  By HG.org
Inheritances have specific rules that make them different than other kinds of assets. For example, an inheritance is usually treated as separate...

What Is a Durable Power of Attorney?

  By HG.org
A power of attorney is a legal document that gives one person certain rights and responsibilities, the agent, over the person who had the...

Are Prenuptial Agreements Invalid Without ILA in Ontario, Canada

Suppose that prior to the death of your spouse the two of you signed an agreement where you both committed not to sue each other’s estate. Also...

Distribution of Estate by an Estate Trustee during Litigation, in Ontario, Canada

Is it appropriate for a court order to permit an Estate Trustee During Litigation (“ETDL”) to distribute the Estate? Possibly.

Can Lawyers Immunize Clients Against Estate Litigation in Ontario, Canada?

Careful estate planning can sometimes prevent a will challenge – but nothing is fool proof. The purpose of this short review is to look at one...

Choice of German Inheritance Law for German Real Estate Only Until August 16, 2015

Owners of real estate in Germany, who are not German citizens, may choose German inheritance law for that real estate only up to and including...

Entitlement to Support Despite Prenuptial Agreement – The Butts Case, in Ontario Canada

Challenging a prenuptial agreement in the context of estate litigation happens more often than you think.

Cost-effective Probate Alternatives When a Person Dies Without a Will

If your loved one passed away without a will, Texas law provides several options for settling the affairs of his or her estate. This article...

Setting Aside a Prenuptial Agreement in Ontario, Canada – LeVan v. LeVan

After LeVan v. LeVan(FN1) Lambert v. Lambert(FN2) and Rick v. Brandsema,(FN3) wealthy people who sign domestic contracts should be getting the...

2014 Amendments to the Malta Retirement Programme Rules

Legal Notice 269 of 2014 has amended the Malta Retirement Programme Rules which were originally promulgated in 2012.

Court Ordered Capacity Assessments in Ontario, Canada

Children fighting over control of their parents’ money sometimes go to court to try to force their parents to undergo capacity assessments. Once...

Initial Steps to Take When a Loved One Dies

When a loved one dies, the last thing that you want to do is to think about business. Having a checklist available during this stressful time...

The Lost Heritage: The Problem of Protecting the Rights of Interested Heirs

Last time the world becomes more globalized, people actively move in search of better or more interesting work, look for a more comfortable...

Probate & Estate – Executor’s Rights to Commence Legal Action Before Grant

Hong Kong has a large multi-national community and as a result, there is a huge number of international estates involving beneficiaries overseas...

The Importance of a Will in South Africa

For some reason setting up our last will and testament makes us think about our own mortality, and so we have a tendency to put it off. There...

Trusts, Role of a Trustee and Family Wealth Management in South Africa

There are a number of particularly important decisions which must be made in establishing a family trust (The Trust Property Control Act, 1988...

Newest Legal and Tax Implications When Purchasing Real Estate in Spain

In real estate transactions in Spain it still happens more often than not that acquired objects or extensions have to be dismantled because...

Inheritance Rights of a Foreigner in Turkey

A foreigner is the individual who is not the citizen of the country s/he has been living in. A foreigner may both be an individual or a legal...

Employment Law in Israel

Significant Issues in Employment Law in Israel

If I Have Only a Small Estate, Do I Need More Than a Will to Meet My Estate Planning Needs?

The overall purpose of estate planning involves more than just passing your assets to your heirs at death.

Inheritance for Foreigners in Ukraine

Every year, the borders between cities, countries and even continents cease to be a major obstacle for people who crave actively moving to new...

The Advantages of Making an Italian Will Under Italian Inheritance Rules

It is generally recommended that foreign citizens owning assets in Italy draft an Italian will. This will prevent significant difficulties that...

Common Law Marriage and Legal Protection in Texas

Persons who are married have certain legal rights and protections that they don't even think about. However, there are other couples who have...

Cut Out of the Will, What Can I Do?

  By HG.org
Losing someone you were close to is always difficult. But, it can be all the worse when you find that the lost loved one may have cut you out of...

The Migration of Non Resident Trusts to Italy

Trusts are still alien to the Italian legal system as they are essentially based on concepts in contrast with the Italian general principles on...

Top 5 Things to Consider Adding to an Estate Plan

  By HG.org
For most, estate planning is not an enjoyable experience. For many it is a recognition of their own mortality. For others, it is simply an...

Inheritance of Property in the Dominican Republic

Under Dominican Law, there are two very important aspects which have an impact on the inheritance of assets of a deceased individual: the time...

What is the Statute of Frauds?

  By HG.org
When dealing with a contract dispute, particularly in the case of an oral contract, one may hear the term “statute of frauds” used. This does...

Families Behind Revlon and Hudson Media Fight Bitter Legal Battle Over Enormous Inheritance

  By HG.org
Samantha Perelman is a 23-year-old student at Columbia University, working on a masters of business administration and as a summer production...

What Happens to Property if There is No Will?

  By HG.org
If you have lost a loved one, there are many things on your mind, not the least of which may be what to do with the belongings that have been...

German Inheritance Tax

This article provides a brief introduction to the German inheritance tax.

Why Is It Important to Have a Will?

  By HG.org
It is important that each person have a will that directs their family members and loved ones on how they want their final wishes to be carried...

International Probate Law: Which Law Apply German Courts in Case of the Death of a German Citizen?

If a person domiciled in the U.S. dies leaving assets in Germany, the question arises which law German Courts apply with respect to succession....

The German Forced Share

If German law applies, some privileged persons may claim the forced share (“Pflichteil”). The article outlines the basic principles of the...

The Administration of a U.S. Domiciled Decedent’s German Assets

As globalization flattens the world, practitioners and individuals are increasingly confronted with estates that include assets in multiple...

German Certificate of Inheritance and German Certificate of Executorship

Generally, German banks, land registries and other institutions do not recognize U.S. probate orders including U.S. Letters of Administration....

Making of Enduring Power of Attorney

Most people will make a will to make arrangements in the event of death. However, medical advancements are making it more possible to stay alive...

Estate Planning with an Existing Disability

Experts frequently advise adults to create an estate plan early on in order to have their life and financial plans arranged in the event that...

Estate Planning for the Elderly

Estate planning is a complex process that requires strict attention to detail.

Estate Planning Wills & Trust Probate It Is Written

Ever since the age of the Babylonian Empire when the first substantial collection of laws were written on tablets of stone, the declaration “It...

Estate Planning for the Modern Family

In a time when the traditional nuclear family has shifted to a more complex structure with multiple marriages, step-children, half-children,...

Who Can Start a Private Foundation?

When you are evaluating your financial position as you plan your estate you may well find that you have the means to set aside resources for the...

CPA Real Estate Loss

There are laws in place to protect investors from unscrupulous brokers at companies looking to take their money and make high commissions with...

Inheritance Tax Trap

Why it is Essential to include comprehensive information when you fill in Inheritance Tax forms IHT 400 and IHT 421

Italian Inheritance Rights Depending on Your Marital Status

It is always a difficult topic to address when one talks about the death of a spouse: this article aims to clarify some of the issues people...

How to Ensure That Your Wishes Are Followed When You Die

For some people, the details of their burial and funeral are unimportant. For others, however, a funeral service and burial is their final...

Do-It-Yourself Estate Planning Should be Avoided for 3 Reasons

Don’t fall victim to the concept of do-it-yourself (DIY) estate planning. Sure, the idea of saving money that would be spent having an attorney...

Keep or Toss? A Guide for Retaining Financial Records

Are you worried about an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax audit? Does that worry make you keep records too long and clutter your living...

Vehicles of Asset Transfer: Choose the Optimal Solutions

You have options when you are arranging for the transfer of assets to your loved ones. In this instance we are not talking about the choice of...

Understanding the Probate Notice to File a Claim

The reality of the world of estate planning is that it is filled with legal terms of art; in fact, of all the legal fields, this one seems to...

Brace Yourself for Future Nursing Home Expenses

Elder law attorneys often see rather shocked looks cross the faces of their clients when they start to explain the extent of nursing home costs.

Retirement Planning for Military Service Veterans

When you speak with any retirement planning attorney he or she is going to advise you to do everything possible to facilitate a retirement...

Give Yourself an Easier Time of Making a Will

Beginning the estate planning process can be a task that seems overwhelming. If you’re having trouble getting started, one of the easiest ways...

Deceased Family Members, Debts, and Creditors: 3 Common Questions

Question 1: What happens to a deceased person’s debts? There are several possibilities. Once a person dies someone will have to manage the...


Find a Lawyer

Find a Local Lawyer