Wills and Estate Planning: Key Questions Every Couple Should Privately Discuss

Joyce and Sam have been married eight years, have two minor children, and work hard every day to build a strong family and a financial future that offers some hope. They know that they should protect their family against the unthinkable – an untimely death or disability. They have many questions and very few answers.

• Do we really need an estate plan? Won’t a basic will do the job?

• Do we have to use a lawyer? Should we use a lawyer?

• What happens if one of us dies suddenly?

• Do we need life insurance? If so, how much? And what kind?

• What if one of us is a poor money manager?

• What if I die and my spouse remarries?

• What about the kids if we are both gone?

• What trust structure option best fits our kids or our grandkids?

• What about trustees and guardians? What are their roles? How do we pick them?

• What should be our kids’ age of inheritance – when they get their inheritance with no strings attached?

• Should our planning look beyond our immediate family – to outsiders or charity?

• Should we be concerned about death taxes?

• What is probate? Like so many, should we try to avoid it? If so, how?

• Who should run the show if death strikes? How can we make the job easier?

• How can we personalize our plan for kids and grandkids?

• How can we plan for a serious incapacity?

The problem is that Sam and Joyce just don’t know enough to meaningfully discuss these questions. They lack core knowledge.

Core knowledge pays off big in these situations. For those drawn to self-help services, it provides an essential foundation for tackling the planning challenge and compensating for the limitations of their self-help program (they all have them). For individuals who desire quality professional help, it makes it easy to spot the phonies – those professionals who suffer from a blind incompetence that precludes anything better than the self-help stuff.

But most importantly, core knowledge makes it possible for any individual to actively participate in the planning process and to ensure that smart decisions are made and the job is done right. And all along the way, the individual’s knowledge base and confidence will continually grow. So for Sam, Joyce, and most other couples, the threshold challenge is to obtain relevant, quality core knowledge through the most convenient, easy-to-understand means available.

PlainTalk Planning, has released a new website (http://www.wills-estateplanning.com) that offers a plainspoken 64-minute video and easy-to-use educational tools that prepare a couple to privately discuss these key questions and make important decisions to protect their family.

Dwight Drake is an experienced planning lawyer, business owner, and law professor at the University of Washington School of Law. He authors an educational service (http://www.plaintalkplanning.com) and a blog (http://www.drakeplaintalkplanning.com). For details on his program on wills and estate planning, go to http://www.wills-estateplanning.com

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Humanitarian Law

What is international humanitarian law?
The newsletter contains a brief description of the sources, content and scope of international humanitarian law.

this is a set of rules that seek, for humanitarian reasons, to limit the impact of armed conflict. It protects persons who are not or are not participating in hostilities, and limits the means and methods of warfare. This is also known as the law of war or the law of armed conflict.

It is part of international law, which is a set of rules governing relations between states. International law is contained in agreements between States – treaties or conventions – in customary law, which consist of State practice considered by them as legally binding, and general principles.

This law applies to armed conflicts. It does not regulate whether a State may actually use force is governed by an important, but separate, part of international law set forth in the Charter of the United Nations.

Where this law, originate?

This is based on the rules of ancient civilizations and religions warfare has always been subject to certain principles and practices.

Universal codification of This law, began in the nineteenth century. Since then, States have agreed on a number of practical rules, based on bitter experience of modern war. These rules establish a clear balance between humanitarian concerns and military needs of the state. As the international community has grown, an increasing number of States have contributed to the development of these rules. These forms today a universal body of law.

The historical convergence between this law and the laws of war .

For most of the 20th century, international humanitarian law, or the “Geneva Act” differs from “Hague Law” or the laws of war proper. Hague Law “defines the rights and obligations of belligerents in the conduct of operations and limits the choice of means, with the injury.” In particular, it deals with the definition of combatants, establishes rules concerning the means and methods of warfare, but also addresses the issue of military objectives.

The experienced family law attorneys at LawyersArea.com are specialized in divorce cases and capable of serving you much better than an attorney that is involved in general practice. The laws that govern the divorce process can vary from state to state. The Divorce Attorneys that practices in our firm are well educated and well versed with the specific laws and procedures that govern the divorce process in your state.

Can Romney Be Trusted?

Is Romney a person who we can trust? The question is what reason do you have to do so? If we look at the history, Mr. Romney has always shown a tendency to change his mind, and go back on the assurances he makes while campaigning.

Romney seems to have a chameleon-like propensity — whether it is his flip-flop on the issue of abortion, or his relation with Ted Kennedy– Mitt’s followers cry foul. Well, people may ask if changing their mind is not good at all. They ask it as if they never spoke ill of John Kerry for his mind-set.

Certainly, people, over time, can have a sudden change-of-heart on many issues, and still say that they are intellectually honest. Such a thing is harder to understand if this person happens to be encouraging the conservative wing of the Republican Party.

It seems that Romney has embraced strictness on matters like immigration, homosexual marriage, and abortion. Why? The answer is quite obvious; the same gentleman, Romney, used to sound very different when he was campaigning in 2002.

Romney was quite comfortable as a crowd of gay Republicans questioned him over breakfast one day in 2002. When he was aspirant for governor of Massachusetts, he was found at a gay bar to court the people of Log Cabin Republicans in Boston.

Mr. Romney affirmed to the group that what he thinks about gay rights had been largely because of his experience in the private sector. People face discrimination in private sector.

Romney assured the gay Republicans’ group that he would not speak on the topic of gay marriage. He would be happy with whatever the state court says on the matter. But then, when Romney was selected, and the Massachusetts Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage, Mitt promptly became untrue to his words. He began asking for a constitutional change that would prohibit the unions.

Such evidences make everyone believe that Romney is not a reliable candidate when it comes to being true to your words. Who knows how much he will be doing what he promises in his campaigns.

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All You might want to Know About Wills And Probate And Why It truly is Crucial

A will can be a person’s final word about the allocation of property and assets they’ve. A will is prepared with the truth in thoughts that death is an inevitable event and everyone will die 1 day. Consequently, an individual who features a large amount of dollars, assets or even if a person has less of every little thing, he or she nevertheless requirements to allocate cash. Cash isn’t the only factor that is definitely included inside the will. A will will be the final word of a person and it carries each of the important words and allocation that an individual wants to complete.

Will and probate solicitors are basically a way of looking at things that an individual owns and at the same time, making positive that the person who had some wishes when he or she was alive are fulfilled according to all of the factors written in the will. A will just isn’t a monetary statement but has to be created in one’s life to ensure that when one leaves there is no tussle amongst the families over money and property of any sort. Nevertheless, at the same time, will demands to become inside a formal document shape and it have to be signed and approved by financial authorities.

At the same time, probate implies looking in detail at the property of the individual who is dying or has died. This is a extended procedure and may well take handful of months to entirely check almost everything and then see that the will with the person has been clearly written. Probate solicitors and wills are actually a way to do all those feasible factors with dignity and efficiency just like the individual who has died has wanted and dreamed. Will and probate solicitors play an critical function.

Even when the will has been adequately made and probate solicitors are incorporated there is nonetheless some space for family from the 1 who has died to panic when they would must spend the tax that is needed to pay on inherited property. The probate solicitor undertakes all of this and he or she would ensure that factors go in accordance with the correct rules and based on the procedures in the government. Considering that it is a extremely disturbing moment for the family, probate solicitor could be a fantastic support in organizing almost everything and making certain the division of assets and income takes spot within the appropriate manner.

Will and probate solicitors are just two ways of creating 1 entire life easy considering that death would be the all-natural outcome of being born and without a proper will and probate solicitor nothing you own can ever be equally given away to your loved ones. Probate solicitor would also be certain that the share that one has written in his or her will basically goes towards the identical persona and not some no cost rider. Due to the fact capital is really a sensitive problem, individuals who are dying or know cannot handle such situations employ a probate solicitor.

 

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Estate Planning With Payable on Death Accounts

Did you know that some bank and investment accounts allow you to specify a person that the account will be paid to at your death? Using a payable on death account allows the account holdings to quickly pass to your beneficiary without having to spend time in court. Settling an estate can take time, and your loved ones may need money to pay estate expenses as well as living costs.

You should be aware of how you set up your account. If there’s more than one beneficiary you wish to leave account funds to, then making it payable to only one person will leave those other family members out of the money. You can add other beneficiaries, but you should be certain to update your choices each time you review your estate plan.

What if your beneficiary passes away before you do? If you do not update the account recipient before your own death, then the account will face probate to determine which heirs are entitled to the funds and how much they will each receive.

If at any time you wish to move your payable on death account into your trust, you may need to seek the permission of the payable on death beneficiary. This may cause delays and additional costs in probate later if you forget this important step.

What about if you want to leave a different portion of your account to each beneficiary? Well, then this type of account may not be the best choice for your estate plan. Many pay on death accounts automatically give an equal share to each beneficiary.

You should also remember that at a pay on death account does not bear its share of estate taxes unless your estate planning documents say otherwise. So, if you want the burden of estate taxes to be shared equally, you should discuss this with your estate planning attorney before setting up the account.

Although a pay on death account is a very simple way to avoid probate for your financial accounts, it can sometimes cause more of a headache if you are not aware of all of the hazards and do not plan accordingly.

Jack Alpern is a leading provider of expert estate planning guidance in Warren, OH. To learn more about estate planning or other estate planning issues, visit our website.

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Do You Need An Attorney? Follow This Advice

Many people hire lawyers for various reasons. The process is overwhelming to those who have never had to do it. There are many things to consider, such as their fee structure, how to communicate with them, etc. This article has many tips which will assist you.

Review a lawyer’s history before hiring them. Having a license to practice law does not signify that he is good at it. Knowing a lawyer’s record will enable you to determine whether or not he or she can handle your case successfully.

Make sure your lawyer is easy to reach. One of the most common complaints people have about lawyers is being unable to get in touch. This can lead to a lot of issues, not the least of which is the fact that you will wonder if you are getting adequate service or not.

TIP! You shouldn’t just hire the first lawyer you come across. This is one choice you need to get right.

Think about what exactly you want before you look for a lawyer. Are you 100 percent sure that you require the services of an attorney? There are many reasons why you might need one. You may also need a lawyer’s expert advice on a financial matter or a business matter.

Business recommendations can be very effective when retaining a lawyer. You might be able to get a referral for a good lawyer from many companies. If you need a lawyer for your small business, talk to other small business owners who have run into the same issues. Such individuals often deal with lawyers and may have some useful insights to share.

Log all interactions with the lawyer. Jot down what you spoke about, what the date and time was and whatever you discussed about payments or bills. This is a good way to avoid unpleasant surprises such as shockingly large bills that make little sense to you.

Establish ahead of time when and where you will be able to have face-time with your attorney. Do not just assume that your case is their first priority. Getting a schedule put together in the beginning will assist you in the future.

TIP! When meeting with your attorney, always ask questions. A reputable lawyer will tell you exactly what they are doing every step of the way.

Be clear about your budget. It may not be worth it cost wise to file or fight a lawsuit. When trying to select an attorney, take a careful look at their fee schedule. Schedule a meeting with them to discuss what you can afford and your expectations. Know that cost overruns may happen.

Find out as much as you you can about a lawyer’s reputation when you are making a selection. An inquiry into your state’s bar association and online reviews is a great way to see whether or not your lawyer has a built up a good reputation. Doing this will help you avoid wasting your time, your money and your sanity going forward.

Prior to hiring an attorney, contact your state bar association to find out if they have any complaints against them. If they have some, read into them and make your judgments on whether you want to hire them.

Verify that the lawyer you are considering has won cases that are similar to yours before you hire him or her. He may say he specializes in the field, but your case may be unusual. If it not found on the Internet, ask the attorney for this information.

TIP! Figure out what the budget you’ll follow will be. If you are the plaintiff in a civil suit, you need to consider whether suing your target is worth the cost.

You need to communicate with your lawyer on a regular basis. You want to make sure you’re giving your lawyer what he or she needs to further your case. The more you work, the easier your case will be.

Regardless of your reason for needing a lawyer, you’ve got to prepare yourself. Keep the advice above in mind when you are looking for a lawyer. It is good advice to make the process smooth and less stressful.

Wills & Executries Scotland: Providing great and wonderful services to customers

Legal help is very crucial when you are fighting a case. It is important to explore various avenues to get a good option.

There have been many disputes in the past that are related to numerous claims on the property. It is a well known fact that real estate is one of the safest investment options in recent times because they have seen an unprecedented growth due to huge demand. People who have bought properties in the past have witnessed that they are worth millions of dollars in recent times. If you want to find Wills & Executries Scotland lawyers you should avail the services of an individual who should be a legal expert on heredity claims. A family consists of many members and if a property belongs to them then each member would get an equal amount of wealth. You must be very clear in your will because if there is any discrepancy it would become a source of conflict after your death. To rectify this situation you can use the services of Wills & Executries Scotland legal professionals so that you can get the maximum benefits. If you have a huge business and you are not able to take a decision you can assign the power of attorney to the next person so that work is not hindered. Power of attorney document is considered to be very complex and you would need legal help so that you are able get the job done in a quick and easy manner. There are other aspects which need to be taken care of by the experts and one of them, is confirmation which is an integral part of the overall process.

Unclaimed wealth:

• There can be various shares and undeclared assets that can be claimed by family members on production of appropriate documents and evidences. Lawyers would help you to get confirmation if the total worth is more than a certain amount of money. It is imperative for you to get is done as quickly as possible because after sometime it is added to the government coffers.

• A good lawyer can help you in designing the will which is impartial and is according to the specifications and requirements of the clients. Intestate succession is a very important law that your expert must know before proceeding for the claim. It is mandatory fort a person to get the will written but if it is absent then the law of land takes its course. Real estate is provided to the spouse which comprise of a house or other components that can be sold fort significant amount of money. Children of the deceased can claim to about 30% of the total net worth of property. It is important to discuss the implications with your legal expert before writing the will.

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Author Bio: – John Smith is the author of this article and writes about legal news. For further details about Wills & Executries Scotland please visit the http://www.wilsonandfish.co.uk/

Last Will and Testament – An Integral Part of Estate Planning

Executing a Last Will and Testament is the greatest gift you can give your loved ones. When people do not take time to write out their will it creates additional grief for the family. Instead of having a say-so in how your assets are distributed, a judge will decide.
 
The Last Will and Testament is used to appoint an estate administrator, designate beneficiaries to receive assets and personal belongings, express burial preferences, and establish guardianship for minor children.
 
Overall, the last will is the package that ties up loose ends of your life. Without it, others will be left in charge of handling your affairs. Dying intestate (without a Will) creates a terrible burden for your loved ones. If you died today, would anyone know what to do? If not, it is time to create a will.
 
Many options exist for establishing a last will. Several websites offer downloadable forms that can be filled out and notarized. Office supply stores sell preformatted forms which only require filling in the blanks.
 
Most credit unions, banks, and investment brokers offer estate planning services to their customers. Estate planning can range from executing a simple last will and testament to establishing revocable or irrevocable trusts. Fees range from under $ 100 to several thousand. Much depends on the value of the estate and services rendered.
 
When individuals own businesses, real estate and valuable assets they should consider using the protection of trusts. The Will is placed inside the trust; keeping assets out of probate and exempt from inheritance tax.
 
Wills must undergo the probate process when not protected through a trust. This process involves validating the will, court confirmation of the estate administrator, paying creditor debts, inventory and appraisal of assets, filing a final tax return, and distributing assets to heirs and beneficiaries.
 
Trusts are generally reserved for estates valued over $ 100,000. Smaller estates can utilize techniques to keep assets out of probate. These include establishing beneficiaries on bank accounts, life insurance policies and investment accounts.
 
The average probated estate takes six to nine months to process. Complex estates can take years to settle. Much depends on the court caseload, estate value, and how well family members get along.
 
The probate process provides a platform where heirs can air grievances. If they feel slighted or were disinherited, they can contest the will. This act rarely accomplishes anything more than bankrupting the estate by overinflating legal expenses.
 
Estate planning experts recommend hiring a probate lawyer to administer estates where family dysfunction exists. Family strife is less likely to occur when a lawyer or professional estate planner is involved.

Author and real estate investor, Simon Volkov, has written numerous articles regarding estate planning, drafting a last will and testament, probate and inheritance. Simon specializes in buying probate estates and provides cash for inheritance. Simon is particularly interested in purchasing estates with real estate holdings. Discover available options by visiting http://www.SimonVolkov.com.

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Working with Your Bankruptcy Lawyer

If you’ve decided to go through the legal system to absolve your debts or get them under control, then most likely you are considering hiring a bankruptcy lawyer to help you through the process. This is almost always a good idea. What’s also a good idea, though, is to take the time to choose your representation wisely, and to stay involved in the process every step of the way.

Choosing Your Lawyer

You don’t want to just choose a bankruptcy lawyer randomly out of the phone book. What you’re doing is much too important. If you know anyone who has filed a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, ask them if they were happy with their representation, and if they were, ask for the number of their attorney. If any of the attorneys in your area look like good prospects, be sure to check their references and credentials before talking to them. Your next step is to call one or two potential attorneys, and ask questions, such as how much they charge, if they offer financing, and what they will do for you during the filing process.

What You’ll Need

Your bankruptcy lawyer is going to need some information from you, some of which he or she can get verbally, and some that needs to be documented. Ask about what is needed as early as possible, in case you need time to get some documentation together. This will include things like tax statements and returns, bills from creditors, and bank statements. Keep the originals if that’s possible, and give copies to your attorney. If the attorney needs any original documents, be sure that you have copies before you hand them over. Most of the time you’ll get them back when the process is over, but you want to be on the safe side.

Working Through the Process

As you go through the process with your bankruptcy lawyer, be sure that he or she explains to you what is going on every step of the way. Your input is needed in order for you to get the best outcome, so don’t be afraid to ask questions and insist that you are always kept informed. A good attorney will welcome this.

With a good bankruptcy lawyer, you’ll get through the procedure with as little emotional stress as possible. Just be sure to do your part in choosing your representation wisely, and in staying involved in the process, and you should be happy with the outcome.

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7 Celebrities You Didn't Know Filed For Bankruptcy

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Bankruptcy for Small Businesses

The entrepreneurial spirit is one of the touchstones of American culture that has made our country so strong. The willingness of driven individuals to step out and risk their financial stability for the sake of a business they believe in has been a catalyst of our country’s growth. However, a recent study by the University of Nevada shows that one in seven bankruptcies are filed by individuals tying to cope with the failure of a small business. While corporations or partnerships cannot file for bankruptcy, Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 are often used by entrepreneurs who are trying to deal with personal and business debt. Since small businesses are unincorporated, they don’t have the same restrictions as larger corporations, which means that any business and personal debts are the responsibility of the business owner. So when a small business owner gets in over their head, the business doesn’t file for bankruptcy, rather the individual files. For small business owners who file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there are several protections which make it an attractive choice. If you are a sole proprietor, you operate your business by yourself so your business debts are also your personal debts, so they can be dismissed in a bankruptcy case. There are several benefits for small business owners to file for bankruptcy. First of all, there is uniform protection in the United States on future assets, which offers a fresh start to the debtor. So, if you are a business owner who files for bankruptcy, you can start a new business or a new job without worrying about having future earnings seized to pay pre-bankruptcy debt. Another important benefit for small business owners filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy is exemptions. Exemptions vary from state to state and are set values above which debtors must surrender property. States with higher exemptions are more attractive to debtors because it protects more of their property. It is important to note that for small businesses filing for bankruptcy, the filer must also list all assets, both business and personal, which makes the exemption value of the state an important detail to know before filing. It can make the difference between keeping a home or having it liquidated. If you are a small business owner who is seriously considering bankruptcy and you live in Los Angeles, you need to consult with an attorney who understands California bankruptcy laws. Not all bankruptcy attorneys are the same. While the process appears complicated, a Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney will be able to help you understand your options and avoid making bad decisions. You get one chance to file bankruptcy right the first time. The attorneys at Borowitz & Clark know what they’re doing, because bankruptcy is all they do. Unlike many firms, they never leave a paralegal or secretary in charge of a case. That’s why their cases succeed at such a high rate—even higher than many other bankruptcy firms. For a free consultation, contact a qualified Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney from BLC Law toll-free at 800-509-3200, or visit www.blclaw.com.

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