Special Needs Trust Pays Substantial Legal Fees in Dispute

SEPTEMBER 26, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 36 Questions often arise about what kinds of payments may, or should, be made from a trust. When the trust is a “special needs” trust, the questions sometimes can be even more pointed — the purpose of a special needs trust, after all, is usually to provide for supplemental […]

Public Fiduciary Offices in Arizona

SEPTEMBER 20, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 35 When an individual living in Arizona becomes incapacitated, or needs financial protection because of diminishing capacity, a family member, friend or private professional fiduciary might be appointed to act as guardian (of the person) or conservator (of the estate). But what if there is no one available to […]

When You Might Want to Open an ABLE Act Account

SEPTEMBER 13, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 34 Now that ABLE Act programs have been set up in several states, you might wonder if it’s time for you to set up an account for yourself or a family member with a disability. How can you figure out whether ABLE is right for you? We’ll try to […]

Failure of the Imagination in Seven-Decade-Old Trust

SEPTEMBER 6, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 33 Why involve an attorney in your estate planning? Partly because they know the rules — and not just the rules about how to prepare a valid and comprehensive document, but also the rules about taxes, trust limitations, and all of the related concerns you might not focus on […]

Trustee Has Duty to Monitor His Lawyer’s Behavior

AUGUST 29, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 32 Are you a trustee, or named as successor trustee for a family member or friend? We regularly advise people in your circumstance that they should get good legal advice. Once you’ve done that, however, you are not absolved from any liability if things go wrong. A trustee is […]

Husband’s Interest in Trust Not Divided in Divorce Proceedings

AUGUST 22, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 31 Carl and Debbie (not their real names) were married, and have two children together. After more than a decade together, Carl filed for a divorce in their home state of Massachusetts. In the course of the divorce action, the court was required to divide Carl and Debbie’s assets […]

Can a Copy of a Missing Will be Admitted to Probate?

AUGUST 15, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 30 You’ve signed your will. We’ve given you the original in a fancy envelope, and a copy showing your signatures. What should you do with it? For most people, most of the time, it is sufficient to just keep the original will in a convenient place at home. What […]

Probate Judge’s Unique Guardianship Orders Overturned

AUGUST 1, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 29 At Fleming & Curti, PLC, we handle a lot of guardianship and conservatorship proceedings. We even act as guardian (of the person) and/or conservator (of the estate) in some cases — particularly when family members are unavailable or unable to agree on the best course of action. But […]

Maine Guardianship Violates Uniform Jurisdiction Act

JULY 25, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 28 Before any guardianship or conservatorship action can be filed in a local court, the court must have jurisdiction over the person subjected to the proceeding. For many decades that had meant (more or less) that the person must be physically present in the state, and not much more. […]

Estate Planning With Individual Retirement Account Trusts

JULY 18, 2016 VOLUME 23 NUMBER 27 One of the great things about our area of law practice is that the community of practitioners is just that — a community. Take, for instance, our good friend Amos Goodall from State College, Pennsylvania: he’s one of the leading elder law attorneys in the country. Amos is […]

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