Recent Blog Posts

Why Would You Consider a Texas Spendthrift Trust?

 Posted on July 09, 2024 in Estate Planning

TX trust lawyerThe underlying goal of most estate planning trusts is to protect the Grantor’s assets during their lifetime and then continue protecting those assets after death or incapacitation. While assets are protected, they are also used—by the Grantor and their beneficiaries. There are many ways a trust addresses specific situations. For example, a special needs trust allows the parent or guardian of an adult child with special needs to continue receiving government benefits while receiving their inheritance in a very controlled manner.

A Texas spendthrift trust may be a separate trust or a clause in a normal revocable living trust. One example of a spendthrift clause would be when a grandparent wants to leave his youngest grandson a gift of $150,000. The grandson has spent his teens and early twenties in and out of minor brushes with the law, including DUI.

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Does a Disabled Child Have Some Control in a Guardianship?

 Posted on June 11, 2024 in Guardianship

TX estate lawyerThere are various scenarios in which a family might want to put guardianship in place to protect a relative. Whether it is set up for someone suffering from dementia who can no longer make appropriate decisions for themselves, someone who has suffered a stroke and is physically incapacitated, or a disabled adult, a guardian is there to help people who cannot handle daily activities.

There are some times when a person is not fully able to handle everything but still has a lot of capabilities. In such cases, limited guardianship can be a great solution. It appoints a guardian for some aspects but still allows the person to maintain a lot of control over their own life. Since health and mental capacity can change over time, it can be overwhelming to try to figure out what type of arrangement is best. If you are considering the best way to protect your disabled child in the future, speak with a knowledgeable Dallas, TX estate planning attorney to understand all your options.

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Three Types of Advance Medical Directives in Texas Estate Planning

 Posted on May 30, 2024 in Estate Planning

Dallas Estate Planning LawyerEstate planning is not just about distributing your assets; it involves planning for future medical decisions when you might not be able to make those choices yourself. In Texas, several advance medical directives play a crucial role in ensuring that your healthcare wishes are respected. Three key types of advance medical directives include a medical power of attorney, a declaration of mental health treatment, and a living will/directive to physicians. Hiring a lawyer to ensure you understand each of these can help you make informed decisions for your future.

Empowering a Trusted Individual by Designating a Medical Power of Attorney

A medical power of attorney (MPOA) in Texas allows you to designate a trusted person, known as your agent, to make healthcare decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated. This document grants your agent the authority to discuss your medical situation with healthcare providers, access your medical records, and make decisions that align with your healthcare preferences.

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Understanding the Two Different Types of Special Needs Trusts in Texas

 Posted on April 30, 2024 in Estate Planning

Dallas Estate Planning LawyerIf you have a loved one with special needs, you likely want to do everything possible to protect his or her future to the greatest extent possible. When it comes to special needs trusts in Texas, it is important to understand what options are available for your loved one. An option you may consider is creating a special needs trust. With two different options in Texas, special needs trusts serve as important tools for safeguarding the financial future and well-being of those who have disabilities, ensuring they can maintain eligibility for important government benefits while still receiving supplemental support. If this sounds like something you are interested in pursuing for your family member, contact an attorney to get started. 

At Andrew Dunlap Attorneys, PLLC, Attorney Dunlap possesses over 45 years of litigation experience in various areas of law. With nearly five decades of experience, Attorney Dunlap has learned a thing or two about providing competent legal guidance to clients. With a proven track record, let Attorney Dunlap get to work for you today.

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Three Most Important Aspects of a Testamentary Trust in Texas

 Posted on March 13, 2024 in Estate Planning

Dallas, TX estate planning lawyerA testamentary trust is a powerful estate planning tool that allows individuals to control the distribution of their assets after their passing. In Texas, understanding the essential aspects of a testamentary trust is crucial for ensuring that all your wishes are carried out effectively. If you are interested in adding a testamentary trust to your estate plan, contact a lawyer to assist you in the process. At Andrew Dunlap Attorneys, PLLC, Attorney Dunlap is a decorated United States Air Force veteran who possesses the legal skill and psychological discipline required to provide his clients with the strongest, most effective legal representation possible.

Trustee Selection and Duties 

One critical aspect of a testamentary trust in Texas is the selection of a trustee. The trustee is responsible for managing the trust assets, following the terms of the trust document, and acting in the best interests of the beneficiaries. When choosing a trustee, it is essential to consider factors such as trustworthiness, financial understanding, and willingness to fulfill their fiduciary duties. Designating a reliable trustee is key to ensuring the proper administration of the trust and the protection of the beneficiary’s interest.

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Three Misconceptions About Transfer on Death Deeds in Texas 

 Posted on February 12, 2024 in Estate Planning

Blog ImageTransfer on Death Deeds (TODD) have gained popularity as an efficient method for transferring property in Texas. However, several misconceptions surrounding TODD can lead to confusion and misunderstanding. If you are interested in learning more about whether a TODD could benefit your estate plan, consult with an experienced Texas estate planning attorney. They will ensure you are afforded the knowledge necessary to make the most informed estate planning decision possible

Misconception #1 – TODDs are Irrevocable 

One common misconception is that once a TODD is executed, it cannot be revoked or changed. However, TODDs are entirely revocable in Texas during the property owner’s lifetime. The property owner can modify or rescind the TODD at any time as long as they have the legal capacity to do so. This allows property owners to adapt to changing circumstances or relationships without being locked into a permanent decision.

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Three Misconceptions Regarding Advance Medical Directives 

 Posted on January 18, 2024 in Elder Law

Blog ImageAdvance medical directives (AMDs) are legal documents that allow individuals to express their healthcare preferences in advance, ensuring their wishes are respected, regardless of whether they are unable to communicate them later. Despite their importance, several misconceptions surrounding AMDs can lead to confusion and potential legal issues. If you want to make an AMD part of your estate plan, an experienced lawyer can make this possible.

Misconception #1 – I Am Too Young to Create an Advance Medical Directive

Many people believe that advance medical directives are only necessary for the elderly or those with serious health conditions that may be nearing the end of their lives. However, accidents and unexpected medical emergencies can happen to anyone at any age. By creating an AMD early on, you can ensure that your healthcare preferences are known and respected, regardless of age or current health status. It is always better to be prepared and document all your wishes, giving you and your loved ones more peace of mind

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Understanding What Muniment of Title Means in Texas

 Posted on December 20, 2023 in Estate Planning


Blog ImageIn the realm of estate planning, the term "muniment of title" holds significant importance, especially in Texas. Muniment of title refers to a legal document that serves as evidence of ownership and transfers property rights without the need for probate. Contact a distinguished lawyer to learn more about the muniment of title and see if it is relevant to your estate plan. 

Definition and Purpose

In Texas, a muniment of title is a document, typically a will, admitted to probate court to establish ownership and transfer property rights. It is evidence of a valid property transfer without needing full probate administration. Muniments of title are commonly used when a property owner passes away, and the property is transferred to heirs or beneficiaries as specified in the will.

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What is a Transfer on Death Deed in Texas?

 Posted on November 16, 2023 in Estate Planning

Dallas Estate Planning LawyerIn Texas, a Transfer on Death Deed (TODD) is a legal document that allows property owners to transfer their real estate to designated beneficiaries upon their death without the need for probate. This relatively new estate planning tool provides flexibility and control over the distribution of property while avoiding the complexities and costs associated with the probate process. If you are interested in pursuing this estate planning tool, contact a qualified lawyer to make your goal a reality. 

Definition and Purpose of a TODD

A Transfer on Death Deed, also known as a beneficiary deed, is a legal instrument that allows property owners to designate one or more beneficiaries who will automatically inherit the property upon the owner’s death. The primary purpose of a TODD is to facilitate the transfer of real estate outside of the probate process, thereby saving time and money for both the property owner and the beneficiaries. 

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Do-Not-Resuscitate Orders and Advance Medical Directives

 Posted on October 18, 2023 in Estate Planning

Texas Estate Planning LawyerDo-not-resuscitate (DNR) orders and advanced medical directives (AMDs) are legal documents in Texas that allow individuals to make decisions regarding their medical care in advance. If you want to sign an advanced medical directive such as a do-not-resuscitate order, contact an experienced estate planning lawyer to start the process today. Your lawyer will be able to explain their purpose, legal implications, and how they help ensure a person’s medical wishes are respected, even if they are unable to communicate them during a medical emergency. 

Do-Not-Resuscitate Orders (DNR)

A DNR is a medical directive that instructs healthcare professionals not to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or other life-saving measures in the event of cardiac or respiratory arrest. A physician typically writes DNR orders based on a patient’s informed consent. These orders are especially relevant for people with terminal illnesses or those who have made a conscious decision to avoid aggressive medical interventions. DNR orders must comply with state laws and are typically recorded in a patient’s medical records to ensure they are honored during emergencies. 

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