Did you know that Georgia has an estate plan in place for you even if you do not sign a will? Although this default estate plan may work for some families, problems are very likely for individuals who die without an estate plan in place.
In our previous post we discussed prenuptial and postnuptial agreements and how these contracts can protect assets such as a small business from a divorce property division. Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements may not be a realistic option for some Georgia couples because some people may refuse to sign the agreements, and other people may be uncomfortable with the potential awkwardness of the financial conversation that surrounds these agreements.
An estate plan is a savvy way to protect and distribute your assets after you die and make sure that your end-of-life wishes are clearly communicated and respected. Unfortunately, divorces routinely complicate a couple's financial and estate planning objectives. Divorces are even more complicated for small business owners who may find themselves faced with the prospect of dividing a business that they worked many years to make successful.
A compromise on the estate tax was part of the negotiations surrounding last week's averted government shutdown. President Obama and democrats agreed to spending cuts and compromised on tax issues including the estate tax. The President made it clear that any decisions on the estate tax were temporary and made begrudgingly.
Special needs trusts are a vital tool for families that have handicapped members who are unable to care for themselves. These trusts are a way to provide for special-needs children who will outlive their parents and ensure that these children will continue to have adequate support and housing.
Last week we discussed the protracted litigation over James Brown's estate. Ideally, a person's wishes are respected upon death. The public nature of the probate process and errors in drafting a will can expose an estate to embarrassing publicity and infighting like the controversy that surrounds Brown's estate.
The former record producer of James Brown claims that his children have subverted his final wishes and hijacked his $100 million estate from charity. The New York Post reports that producer Jacque Hollander has started a court battle to see that The Godfather of Soul's estate goes to a trust for needy children.
A postnuptial agreement is an agreement between a couple that has already married. These agreements frequently cover estate planning matters such as the division of property in the event of death and many of the common issues typically addressed in prenuptial agreements, such as what happens to assets in the event of a divorce.
In previous posts, we covered the basics of Georgia probate and the death of Hollywood legend Elizabeth Taylor. The celebrity news website Radar Online reports that the probate process has begun for Elizabeth Taylor's estate, which is estimated to be worth between $600 million and $1 billion.