Should You Contest a Will?

Should You Contest a Will?

Estate Planning
When a loved one passes away, you might have a good idea of how they chose to distribute their property in a will. In rare situations, however, the will is read, and certain beneficiaries are shocked at the choices of their loved one. Perhaps most of the estate went to an unexpected individual, or they disinherited someone who was close to them. In this case, you might think about bringing a will contest in court. Will contests are complex matters, and they are not appropriate if you are simply upset about the contents of a will. However, if you believe the will - or certain provisions - should be rendered invalid, you should speak with an estate planning litigation lawyer in Pleasanton right away. Reasons for Will Contests There are…
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Do You Need to Update Your Estate Plan?

Do You Need to Update Your Estate Plan?

Estate Planning
When you make an estate plan, it is easy to feel secure that your affairs are in order and will be properly handled should you become incapacitated or pass away. However, many circumstances can change throughout your life, and a common mistake is failing to revisit your estate plan regularly to determine whether any changes and updates are in order. Life Events Did you get married or divorced? Did you have a new child? These are all reasons why you should review your estate plan. While state laws have some provisions addressing spousal inheritance, it is best to specifically set out your wishes and bequests for your spouse and children. In addition, you can name your spouse as your power of attorney if you wish, or remove that spouse if…
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Defending a Will in Probate

Defending a Will in Probate

Estate Planning
When someone contests the validity of a will or certain provisions, it can cause many complications and delays in the probate process. If you are named as the executor of an estate, part of your duties include defending the will against attacks by actual or potential beneficiaries. If a will contest arises, you need the help of an experienced probate lawyer in Pleasanton right away. The right law firm can assist in the following ways, among others. Contacting the Original Lawyer It is important that we contact the lawyer who assisted the decedent in drafting and/or amending the will. This attorney will be a critical witness who can attest to the circumstances under which the will was drafted and signed. This includes testifying to the decedent’s mental capacity at the…
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The Importance of Business Succession Planning

The Importance of Business Succession Planning

Estate Planning
Many people in California earn a living from their own businesses or business interests. While you might be focused on the success of your current operations, it is also important to consider what will happen to your business if you retire, pass away, or become incapacitated. Having a carefully thought-out and drafted business succession plan is essential. You should always discuss your many options for succession with an experienced business and estate planning lawyer in Pleasanton. Some steps of creating a succession plan include: Choosing a successor - Often, this can be a business partner, adult child, or another family member who wants to take over the company. In other situations, selling your interests to a co-owner or selling the entire enterprise may be the best option. Valuating the business…
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Does an Executor Need Legal Representation During Probate?

Does an Executor Need Legal Representation During Probate?

Estate Planning
If someone named you as the executor of their will, it is common to wonder whether you need legal assistance after the testator passes away. You will need to locate the will and submit it to the probate court, after which the legal process will vary depending on the circumstances of the situation. If you have concerns or questions, never hesitate to call a probate lawyer in Pleasanton. Understanding Your Duties An executor has a fiduciary duty to the beneficiaries of the will. This means you must always act in the best interests of the beneficiaries and make prudent decisions that are never biased or self-serving. This can be more challenging than you may think. This fiduciary duty applies during all stages of probate, which might involve the following responsibilities…
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Estate Planning FAQ

Estate Planning FAQ

Estate Planning
No one enjoys pondering the possibility of a serious illness, injury, or death. However, in order to best protect your family and what you have worked for during your life, you should always consider speaking with an experienced estate planning lawyer in Pleasanton. Here are only some of the common questions we can answer for you. What estate planning documents do I need? While a will is the foundation of an estate plan, there are many additional documents that can benefit you and your family. We evaluate the individual circumstances of each client, and we can help the following and more: Last will and testamentLiving trustSpecial needs trustPower of attorney Healthcare agency and directives These legal tools each have their own purpose and benefits, and we can advise you what…
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