Recent Blog Posts

Do I Need to Prepare Before Going to Probate Court?

 Posted on September 15, 2023 in Estate Planning

Facing a probate court appearance can be a daunting experience for anyone. Before going to probate court, it is essential that you prepare for your appearance. The first step anyone should take before going to probate court is to hire a qualified and experienced estate planning lawyer. Before going to court, you and your Texas attorney will prepare thoroughly for your appearance. Once your court date arrives, your lawyer will join you in the courtroom as you work through whatever legal matters you need to. Appearing in probate court without a lawyer increases your chances of an unfavorable case outcome.

Important Considerations as You Prep for Dallas County Probate Court 

Make no mistake, probate court can be extremely complex. This is one of the reasons why arriving at court with a lawyer is so important. However, it is also essential to do some prep of your own before heading to court. Try to familiarize yourself with the legal process before your court appearance. While this certainly will not make you an expert overnight, you will at least be familiarizing yourself with the specific procedures, rules, and requirements that apply to your probate case. This may include understanding the role of the different parties involved and more.

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Understanding the Basics of a Special Needs Trust

 Posted on August 04, 2023 in Estate Planning

TX trust lawyerA special needs trust (SNT) is a crucial legal tool designed to provide for individuals with disabilities while preserving their eligibility for government benefits. It ensures that individuals with special needs receive the financial support they may require in a thoughtful and structured manner. Today, we will explore the fundamentals of a special needs trust, its importance, and some key considerations when establishing one. To see if a special needs trust may be suitable for a loved one, contact an estate planning attorney to learn more about what such trusts entail.

Defining a Special Needs Trust

A special needs trust is a legal arrangement where a trusted individual or entity, known as a trustee, is designated to hold and manage assets on behalf of a person with special needs, known as a beneficiary. The primary objective of an SNT is to supplement the government benefits the individual may receive without jeopardizing their eligibility for programs such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

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I Have Children But Few Assets. Should I Still Create a Will?

 Posted on July 07, 2023 in Estate Planning

TX wills lawyerCreating a will is a common consideration for individuals with assets, but what about those with few assets? You may wonder if there is still a need for a will. The answer is yes, especially if you have children. Today, we will explore the many reasons why having a will is essential, regardless of your asset status. If you are interested in taking this important estate planning step, contact an experienced estate planning lawyer to guide you through the process.

Here is Why Creating a Will, Regardless of Your Wealth, is So Important

The following are reasons why you should still create a will even if you have limited resources:

  • Naming a guardian for your children – One of the most critical reasons to create a will is to appoint a guardian for your children if you pass away. Without a will, such considerations may be left to the courts. By creating a will, you can retain control over this critical decision and ensure your children will be cared for by someone you trust.

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What Are the Benefits of an Irrevocable Trust? 

 Posted on June 05, 2023 in Uncategorized

Irving Estate Planning LawyerWhen we discuss trusts in the context of estate planning, we often focus on revocable trusts. While revocable trusts have many uses and benefits, including the fact that they can be dissolved and modified, there are certain situations in which an irrevocable trust may be more beneficial. In this blog, we will discuss the unique benefits of an irrevocable trust and explain situations in which an irrevocable trust may be the best option for meeting your needs.

Irrevocable Trust Advantages and Disadvantages

An irrevocable trust is a powerful estate planning tool that offers numerous benefits. Many people use an irrevocable trust to protect assets from creditors or lawsuits. With an irrevocable trust, the assets placed into it are no longer owned by the grantor, so they cannot be seized under most circumstances. For example, a doctor or surgeon may use an irrevocable trust to protect their assets from future malpractice claims.

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7 Reasons to Include a Living Trust in Your Estate Plan

 Posted on May 02, 2023 in Estate Planning

Irving Living Trust LawyerEstate planning is crucial for everyone, regardless of their economic circumstances or family relationships. With an estate plan in place, you can make sure your assets will be handled correctly both before and after your death, and you can make provisions to ensure that your loved ones will be cared for properly while also addressing your own needs. While a will is an essential part of any estate plan, it may not be sufficient to protect your assets and ensure that your family's needs will be met. A living trust can be an important addition to your estate plan, and it can offer numerous benefits that other estate planning tools cannot.

Benefits of Living Trusts

A living trust is a legal entity that you can use to hold and manage your assets during your lifetime while providing instructions for how assets will be distributed to different beneficiaries. Assets in a trust are managed by a trustee, and they may be distributed to multiple different beneficiaries. With a living trust, you can name yourself as a beneficiary, ensuring that you can use your assets during your lifetime, and you can change the terms of the trust at any time to distribute assets to beneficiaries either before or after your death.

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When Does an Elderly Person Need a Medical Power of Attorney?

 Posted on April 11, 2023 in Elder Law

Dallas Medical Power of Attorney LawyerAs people age, their medical needs become more complex. It is important for a person and their loved ones to plan for the future in case they become unable to make decisions for themselves. In such situations, a Medical Power of Attorney (MPOA) can be a crucial tool that provides a trusted family member or friend with the legal authority to make medical decisions on a person's behalf. Elderly people and their loved ones will want to understand the situations where having an MPOA may be necessary, and they will also want to be aware of what specific issues a Medical Power of Attorney may address.

Understanding the Benefits of an MPOA

A Medical Power of Attorney will allow a person to designate someone they trust to make decisions about their medical care in the event of an emergency or if they are no longer able to do so. If a senior citizen has dementia, is in a coma, or is incapacitated in any other way, a medical power of attorney will go into effect, and their health care agent (the person named in the MPOA) will be able to make decisions on their behalf.

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Probate Vs. Non-Probate Assets: What You Need to Know

 Posted on March 03, 2023 in Estate Planning

Irving Estate Planning Attorney

When it comes to estate planning, there are a variety of issues to consider. A person or family that creates an estate plan will need to make decisions about what will happen after someone's death, although issues related to medical care, personal care, and financial concerns while they are still alive may also be an important consideration. When determining how to distribute different assets to a person's heirs after their death, it is important to understand the difference between probate and non-probate assets. In a nutshell, probate assets are those that must be considered during the probate process, which must take place before title transfers can be performed. Non-probate assets, on the other hand, will not be considered during the probate process. By understanding how different types of assets will be transferred to beneficiaries, a person can rest assured that their affairs will be handled correctly after they are gone.

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First-Party and Third-Party Special Needs Trusts: What Is the Difference?

 Posted on February 02, 2023 in Estate Planning

Dallas Special Needs Trusts Attorney

When you are creating an estate plan, it is important to understand all the options available. Some of the most important considerations you may face may be related to how you can provide for a person with special needs. However, different issues may need to be addressed depending on whether a person has resources available to them or whether you are putting solutions in place to provide assistance to a loved one with a disability. While special needs trusts can be beneficial in these situations, it is important to understand the differences between first-party and third-party special needs trusts.

The primary benefit of a special needs trust (SNT) is that it provides assistance for a beneficiary who has a disability or other special needs without impacting their eligibility for government benefits. Since assets placed into a trust are not owned by the beneficiary and are not considered to be among their available resources, these assets will not affect their ability to apply for or receive benefits such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Medicaid. A third party known as a trustee will manage the assets in the trust and ensure that they are used for approved purposes. This can help the person meet their ongoing needs and provide them with resources they can use in their daily lives.

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What Is the Difference Between a Will and a Living Will?

 Posted on January 24, 2023 in Estate Planning

Dallas Estate Planning AttorneyCreating an estate plan is an important step in ensuring that your wishes are known and respected, no matter what may happen in the future. An estate plan may contain multiple different types of documents, including a will and a living will. Both documents play an important role in making sure that your wishes are carried out correctly. However, there are key differences between them that must be taken into account when planning for the future.

What Is a Will?

A last will and testament is a legally binding document that states who will inherit your assets after you pass away. It will also name an executor who will be responsible for carrying out your wishes, and if necessary, you may appoint a guardian for your minor children. Your executor will also be responsible for settling your debts and any other monetary obligations. While your will can be amended at any time while you are alive, it will only take effect upon your death.

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Is Limited Guardianship Available for Adults in Texas?

 Posted on December 18, 2022 in Guardianship

dallas guardianship lawyerThere are many situations where elderly or disabled people may need help during their daily lives, and a family may believe that guardianship is appropriate. However, a person may be concerned about giving up control over their life, and they may want to be able to continue to make certain decisions for themselves. In these situations, a family may want to consider whether a limited guardianship will be appropriate or whether other options will be available. By working with an elder law attorney, a family can determine their best options and put solutions in place to ensure that an elderly or disabled family member's needs will be met.

What Is Limited Guardianship?

In a limited guardianship, the court will appoint someone to make decisions about specific aspects of the ward's life, such as their finances or healthcare. Notably, Texas law states that when a guardian will have limited authority over a ward, the guardianship should be designed in a way that will encourage the ward to develop or maintain self-reliance as much as possible so that they can independently meet their own needs. Unless there is reason to believe otherwise, it is presumed that a person will retain the capacity to make decisions about where they will live.

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