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Category Archives: Estate Planning

Coronavirus2

What the Coronavirus Economic Panic Means for Your Estate Plan

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Even if you are an expert at avoiding media hype, you can’t avoid noticing that the novel coronavirus, COVID-19 has almost everyone worried, even though only a few cases have been reported in the United States. In crowded places like malls and Metro stations, you probably see more people wearing surgical masks than you… Read More »

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ElderCouple

When Your Children Don’t Want to Inherit Your Personal Items: An Estate Planning Guide to Decluttering

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

In the field of estate planning law, there is much talk of reducing the value of your probate assets, and therefore reducing the estate taxes, by giving your heirs part of their inheritance while you are alive. Ways to do this include transferring assets to a trust, transferring the title of a house to… Read More »

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Planning

Communicate Openly with Your Spouse About Your Estate Plan, Even If You Keep Your Finances Separate

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

In some ways, a second marriage later in life can be refreshingly drama-free. You have gained enough wisdom not to fall victim to the insecurities that can lead you to have major battles with your spouse about minor slights. You can be each other’s confidante and emotional support when co-parenting your children with your… Read More »

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EstPlan9

Difficult Decisions: Estate Planning to Provide for Troubled Relatives

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

You know you are officially an adult when you look at your pay stub and, instead of daydreaming about using what is left after your bills to splurge on purchases for yourself, you imagine saving it for your children, even if you do not have children yet. One of the happiest moments in a… Read More »

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Paterakis Estate Dispute Highlights the Difference Between Probate and Non-Probate Assets

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

When a person dies, their estate goes through a judicial review process called probate, but the estate may not include everything the deceased person owned when they are alive. The main purpose of probate is to carry out the instructions in the deceased person’s will; if the person did not leave a will, then… Read More »

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Widow of Maryland Novelist Sues Executor of Husband’s Will Over Estate Taxes

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

The type of dispute over the estate of a deceased person that attracts the most media attention is the disputes between a wealthy man’s widow and his children from a previous marriage. The tabloid press and its successor, clickbait journalism, often play up the drama of the acrimonious relationship between a stepmother and stepchildren… Read More »

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Planning2

Estate Planning for the Recently Divorced

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

If you made an estate plan in which you provided generously for your spouse, or one in which you and your spouse mutually agreed to leave more assets to your children from previous marriages than to each other, the news that your spouse wants a divorce probably upends your world even more than it… Read More »

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EstatePlanning2

Incentive Trusts: Proceed with Caution

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

You love your children, but they are terrible at managing money. When they were little, you dreamed of the day when they would be financially independent, but now that you are thinking about estate planning, you are starting to realize that the money you planned to leave to your children will be gone in… Read More »

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Challenging a Will Because of a Testator’s Loss of Mental Faculties

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

It is hard to talk to your parents about their inevitable illness and death, even while they are healthy, even when you are just speaking in terms of hypothetical ways that their final years might play out. It is even more difficult when their health is already fragile or they are already suffering from… Read More »

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EstPlan18

Should You Open a Payable on Death Bank Account?

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

A payable on death (POD) bank account is one that is earmarked, from the beginning, to stay out of probate. “Payable on death” means that, immediately upon the death of the original owner, the beneficiary becomes the new owner of the account and all the money in it. Does it sound too good to… Read More »

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