Dealing With Bad Landlords

What Type of Probate Help Do You Need?

Posted by on August 5, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What Type of Probate Help Do You Need?

If you have been named as the personal representative, administrator, or the executor of an estate that has to go through probate, you may find yourself in need of a probate attorney. While this is not required by law, it is often a good investment of time and financial resources to ensure that things are done right. The type of help you need will help to dictate the skill set of the attorney you are looking for. While most probate attorneys are trained to handle all aspects of the job, there is a difference between ligation and transactional lawyers. Understanding the probate process and what could go wrong is the first step in ensuring you hire the right person. What Is Involved in Probate? Probate is simply the process of gathering together all of the assets that belong to a deceased person and ensuring that they are distributed as they need to be. If there are liabilities or debt left behind, some of the assets may need to be used to settle that, but what remains will need to be distributed to those that the deceased has designed to be the beneficiaries. The process of probate can range from being relatively simple, which is normally the case in small estates, or in states that have adopted the Uniform Probate Code (UPC), whose primary purpose was to standardize and streamline the process surrounding estate planning and probate. There are sixteen states that have fully adopted this code, although many others have adopted some portions of it.  In your role as a personal representative, you will be expected to first file an application with the court to be named as the administrator, executor, or personal representative of the estate. This may be outlined in the person’s will, or may be expected due to the relationship you have with the deceased, such as that of the spouse, or other immediate family member.  Once your application is approved giving you this official capacity to act on behalf of the estate, your basic duties will involve the following: Notify heirs, beneficiaries, as well as any creditors that the estate is in probate. Publish and keep proof of a written notice in the local newspaper to notify any creditors you may not know about. Create a detailed inventory of the estate’s assets. Keep the estate property safe and secure during the process. Ensure the proper distribution of the property.  If everything goes smoothly, you will then be able to provide a final accounting of the estate to the court, and the estate will be able to be closed. But when things do not go smoothly, or you are dealing with a very large estate, you will probably need the services of a probate attorney. These services can be broken down into two main categories: transactional and litigation services. What Is Involved in Transactional Services? Especially with large estates, or those that involved numerous financial products such as stocks, bonds, or real estate holdings, there can be numerous transactions that must take place prior to the estate being settled. During this process, you will want to ensure that you have the best advice on how to legally proceed. This will keep you in good standing with the IRS, as well as the beneficiaries, and even creditors...

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When Might Foster-To-Adoption Be The Right Choice For Your Family?

Posted by on October 9, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on When Might Foster-To-Adoption Be The Right Choice For Your Family?

If you’ve always dreamed of having a larger family but have found that biology doesn’t always allow these dreams to come true, you may be wondering about your next steps. Both in vitro fertilization and international adoption can be expensive, and you may worry that you’ll still be left with empty arms despite spending tens of thousands of dollars. However, one less expensive alternative may offer you the chance to make a difference in the lives of multiple children while opening your home to the child who could legally become your own. Read on to learn more about the foster-to-adoption process to determine whether this is a good option for you and your partner. What is the foster-to-adoption process? Some foster parents don’t intend to keep any children long term, but instead wish to serve as a safe place for children or teens whose families are unable or unwilling to provide stable care. These foster parents may rotate through children frequently, returning them to the biological parents once the issue has resolved (or to a more permanent foster placement), or they can keep children for longer periods of time, but never with the intent to make it a permanent arrangement. However, other foster parents may long for a permanent placement that eventually turns into a legal adoption. This process can be a great way to ensure that a child is a good fit for your family before finalizing a legal adoption. Generally, to go through the foster-to-adoption process, you’ll need to become a state-certified foster parent and then make yourself available for long-term placements. Local social workers will work with you to identify children who fit your desired description (age, gender, race, and the presence or absence of certain handicaps) and whose parents are headed down the path toward having their legal rights terminated. Once these parental rights are severed, you’ll often be able to step in as a legally adoptive parent, just as if you had adopted this child from birth.  On the other hand, if the placement doesn’t work out, you’ll be able to return the child to another foster home that may be a better fit. This isn’t an option when going through a traditional adoption — in fact, one mother who sent her child unaccompanied on a plane back to Russia found herself at the center of an international adoption controversy and was even ordered to pay child support. What are some potential hurdles to adopting through the foster system? While the adoption process can be lengthy and often frustrating, the process of becoming a foster parent can sometimes be more rigorous than going through the adoption process (depending upon the country from which you’re adopting). Often, when doing a foster-to-adoption, you’ll need to repeat a portion of the home checks and other documentation before your foster-to-adoption is finalized by the courts. For example, during the home check for a foster care license, most states will require that all medication and weapons in the home be secured in an inaccessible place, like a biometric safe. Other states may even require you to purchase a lock for your liquor cabinet before clearing your application. Your family and friends may be interviewed about your temperament, your experience with children, and any potential red flags that may arise.  Another...

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