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estate and probate litigation Archives

Identifying the key responsibilities of an estate executor

When someone passes away, friends and family members of the deceased often experience heavy emotions. On top of the loss, there are a number of important matters that must be handled. The estate executor, sometimes referred to as the estate administrator, is responsible for making sure these matters are resolved. In some cases, the deceased will name an executor in the last will and testament.  If the deceased did not appoint one, however, the state may appoint someone to carry out those duties.

Getting around a no contest clause

It certainly may be disappointing if, after experiencing the death of a loved one in Seattle whose estate you anticipate being a party to, you discover that you are not included in their will (or at least not the to the degree you might have thought you would be). You wanting to question the validity of the will in such a scenario may be justified (particularly if the decedent had previously indicated you would be, but then ultimately were not). However, if the will contains a no contest clause, you challenging could affect any interest you already may in the estate. Many in this very situation have come to us here at Riach Gese Jacobs PLLC asking what to do. 

If your parents die broke, are you liable for their debts?

It is never easy to watch your parents age, but for many residents of Washington, this is an unavoidable reality they must face at some point or another. While losing a parent can prove immensely difficult simply because of the emotions involved with the loss, you may find that you face additional hurdles after a parent dies if you are also in charge of managing that parent’s estate.

What you should know before challenging a will

At Riach Gese Jacobs, PLLC, in Seattle, Washington, we represent numerous clients involved in various forms of estate litigation. Consequently, we know that one of the most distressful situations that can arise is a will challenge that can tear a family apart. Therefore, before you challenge someone’s will, you need to be sure that you have valid grounds for doing so.

Who gets what if you die without a will?

You might believe that by avoiding stipulating who receives your assets when you die, you instead leave the decision to your heirs. This saves you from being blamed for favoring certain heirs over others. Unfortunately, the administration of the estates of those who die intestate (without a will) ie left to the state to manage. Thus, anyone who you might want to receive assets from your estate whose relationship to you is not addressed in the state's intestate succession laws would not be included amongst your heirs. 

What happens after a trust ends?

There is an old saying familiar to many in Seattle: "nothing lasts forever." While it may seem like a tired cliché to you, it is nevertheless true as it relates to a trust. As the grantor of a trust, not only do you have some say as to how and when the trust comes to an end, you also have a responsibility to determine what happens afterward. 

2019: A fresh year, a fresh estate plan

Residents in Washington State who have established estate plans in place might feel that they have done their work in this area and no longer need to be concerned about this part of their lives. While certainly, it is better to have a plan than to not have one at all, every estate plan is in need of review on occasion. The start of a new calendar year can be a great time to do just this.

Special needs planning considerations

If you have a son or daughter in Washington State with special needs, you know that there can be many additional costs and logistics associated with caring for them than with a child who does not have such needs. While you no doubt put a lot of time and effort into caring for your child today, you should also put time and effort into providing for their care after you die. There are a variety of considerations you should factor in when choosing how to do this.

Do I need to document my online logins?

If you are like many people in Washington State who have created a will or a trust several years ago, you might have focused on traditional elements like who will inherit your home and who will be the executor of your estate or the trustee of your trust. Depending on how long ago you created your estate plan, you may not have given much, if any, thought to online logins and accounts. Now is the time to review and include these elements in your plan.

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Riach Gese Jacobs, PLLC
7331 196th Street, SW
P.O. Box 1067
Lynnwood, WA 98046

Phone: 425-329-7857
Phone: 425-776-3191
Fax: 425-775-0406
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