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New Uniform Power of Attorney Act Should Reduce Conflicts

Financial Accounting

Powers of attorney have often sparked conflict within families.  However, a new uniform law is designed to help reduce those conflicts, according to Financial Advisor in "A New Uniform Act Guides Clients Dealing With Aging Parents."

The act has only been adopted by four states. There are concerns about the burdens it might place on children, who act as power of attorney for their elderly parents.

The law gets around the potential conflict by requiring agents to provide a financial accounting to other potential heirs.

People who are working full-time, taking care of their kids and assisting their elderly parents are concerned that they do not have the time or expertise to provide a detailed accounting of every last penny.

Despite some concerns, this law will soon go into effect in Texas, Wyoming, New Hampshire and North Carolina.

An elder law attorney can advise people acting under powers of attorney of their responsibilities.

Reference: Financial Advisor (Dec. 1, 2017) "A New Uniform Act Guides Clients Dealing With Aging Parents."

Happy New Year!

 

 

From all of us at Estate Planning and Legacy Law Center…

Happy New Year 2018

Glen Campbell's Estate Faces Possible Challenges

WillsGlen Campbell drafted his will in 2006 and explicitly cut out the three children he had with his second wife, according to the Daily Mail in "Fighting over dad's rhinestones: Major inheritance fight expected after the late country legend Glen Campbell cut three of his eight kids from his will."

Campbell announced in 2011 that he was suffering from Alzheimer's and made the news again in 2015 when two out of his eight children filed a lawsuit seeking permission to visit him. They claimed such visitation was being denied to them by Campbell's fourth wife.

They eventually won that lawsuit.

Campbell has since passed away.  However, the fighting between his family members is not over.

What is not clear is why Campbell cut three of the children out.

Campbell's estate is estimated to be worth $50 million, giving the three excluded children plenty of financial reasons to contest the will.

Campbell may have made some basic estate planning mistakes when he did not say why he was disinheriting the children or use some other method of exclusion and did not include a no-contest clause.

A court hearing is already scheduled on the matter.

Reference: Daily Mail (Nov. 30, 2017) "Fighting over dad's rhinestones: Major inheritance fight expected after the late country legend Glen Campbell cut three of his eight kids from his will."

States Standardize Digital Access

Digital assetsGetting access to digital accounts when someone passes away, has become less complex with the acceptance of the Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, according to Slate in "The Digital Afterlife Is a Mess."

The newly accepted process:

  • If outside of its general terms of service, a website has a specific way to handle access to accounts of deceased users, then that process should be followed.
  • If a website does not have that specific process, then a user can put in a will how the accounts should be handled and by whom.
  • If nothing is mentioned about the accounts in a will, then any language to handle the death of users in the website's general terms of service agreement are used.
  • If none of the above apply, then the Act can be used to gain access in some circumstances.

An estate planning would most likely be helpful is advising families on access to the digital accounts process because assistance is often needed, despite the improvements in the process.

Reference: Slate (Nov. 29, 2017) "The Digital Afterlife Is a Mess."

Where Is Aaron Hernandez’s $9 Million?

New england

 

It appears that Aaron Hernandez, who committed suicide while in prison, might have placed money in an irrevocable trust for the benefit of his daughter.  However, concerns of fraud have come to light, according to Yahoo! Sports in "Report: Aaron Hernandez may have hidden money in trust, before his death."

Hernandez of the New England Patriots suffered from an advanced case of CTE, a debilitating brain injury common in football players.

When he was arrested for the murder of Odin Lloyd, the Patriots paid him $9 million as required under the terms of his contract.

Hernandez was subsequently convicted of the crime and committed suicide in prison. Lloyd's family has been trying to get damages out of Hernandez's estate.

However, there is a problem because the estate is already underwater.

It owes more money than it has in assets.  However, what happened to the $9 million? It has not been accounted for.

Assets placed in an irrevocable trust are usually shielded from creditors, including the Lloyd family. However, if the assets were put in the trust for the specific purpose of defrauding known creditors, then the trust could be dissolved.

That makes it important to know when Hernandez created the trust and what assets were put into it.

Reference: Yahoo! Sports (Nov. 28, 2017) "Report: Aaron Hernandez may have hidden money in trust, before his death."

Check with Attorney before Challenging Estate

LawyerThe outcome of a challenge to an estate isn’t guaranteed and could backfire, according to the Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog in "Take It or Leave It: The Perilous Decision of Whether to Violate a No Contest Clause."

Sometimes when a person challenges a no contest clause and loses the challenge, courts will refuse to enforce the clause. Sometimes when a person challenges a no contest clause and wins the challenge, the court will enforce the clause anyway.

The difference between the two extremes is a matter of individual state law and what exactly is being challenged.

There are different rules in every state.

An estate planning attorney can advise you on wisdom of filing a challenge and the potential outcomes.

Reference: Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog (Nov. 24, 2017) "Take It or Leave It: The Perilous Decision of Whether to Violate a No Contest Clause."

Merry Christmas from EPLLC!

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From all of us at Estate Planning and Legacy Law Center…

May the spirit of Christmas fill your home with peace, joy and love.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

 

Problems Can Be Avoided by Informing Family of Plan

Manson Leaves Estate to Pen Pal

Pen pal

Charles Manson, who died in prison in November, knew he had an estate and he made plans for it to go to his pen pal, according to TMZ in "Charles Manson Will Surfaces Pen Pal Gets Everything."

While Manson was in prison, he developed a friendship with someone who the press is not identifying by name for privacy reasons.

The man and Manson became pen pals. They even talked on the phone and the man visited Manson in prison.

This relationship prompted Manson to write a will in 2002 leaving the man everything Manson owns and specifically disinherits all of Manson's known family members.

There might actually be some value in Manson's estate, since collectors may want some of his personal items and Manson wrote a few songs that he copyrighted.

Reference: TMZ (Nov. 24, 2017) "Charles Manson Will Surfaces Pen Pal Gets Everything."

Manson Leaves Estate to Pen Pal