The Biggest Estate Planning Mistakes

Everyone knows an estate plan is a good idea, but too few actually follow through on one. Even then, people who think they’ve dotted every “i” and crossed every “t” still make critical errors that will cause headache or hardship for the family down the line. On a national scale, the impact of inadequate estate […]

Things You Should Have in a Secure Location When You Die

Most people hear “end-of-life plan” and imagine a will, perhaps a trust, maybe even healthcare directives and a power of attorney. Certainly, those are all crucial documents that everyone should have in place. But there are smaller, practical considerations too. View image | gettyimages.com When someone dies, his or her family must suddenly assume an […]

How to Choose the Right Agent for Your California Estate Plan

An estate plan is as much of a contingency arrangement as an inheritance mechanism. We all hope to live long lives free of catastrophe or disease, but it would be irresponsible to discount the “what-if”s altogether. View image | gettyimages.com That’s why most wills include contingency provisions and are accompanied by healthcare directives and a […]

Robin Williams and the Importance of Specificity in Trusts

“Even the most mundane items can be fodder for fights.” View image | gettyimages.com That’s the headline in Investment News — a report on Robin Williams’ estate plan and the nasty family feud it’s left behind. The media is abuzz this month over litigation pitting the actor’s wife and children against one another in court. […]

Reasons for Updating an Already-Finished Estate Plan

Long before Jim Carrey went green in Gotham and battled Batman, the world knew a different man as “The Riddler.” He wasn’t a villain or even a fictional character, but rather a widely respected Greek philosopher known as Heraclitus of Ephesus. View image | gettyimages.com Heraclitus earned his reputation as “The Riddler” and “The Obscure” […]

Martin Luther King Jr.’s Children Battle in Court Over His Estate

Nearly forty-seven years have passed since the tragic assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His incredible life and legacy continue to command our attention and admiration all these decades later. This year, his story is remembered anew thanks to the movie Selma and its several Oscar nominations. View image | gettyimages.com The Academy Awards […]

Crazy Estates Get a TV Show with “Strange Inheritance”

Estate law doesn’t always enjoy a reputation as the most exciting topic under the sun. That’s why we’re pleased to hear of a new TV show that shines a light on estates and their sometimes-unpredictable legacies. View image | gettyimages.com As first announced in The Hollywood Reporter, “Strange Inheritance” is a reality show that follows […]

Amy Grant Advocates Estate Planning After Her Dad’s Dementia

Once a pop music icon for Generations X and Y, singer-songwriter Amy Grant is offering a new message for the so-called “Sandwich Generation” today — people who find themselves simultaneously caring for their parents and their children. View image | gettyimages.com The multiplatinum, six-time Grammy winner has spent the last few years on the frontlines […]

What “Downton Abbey” Teaches Us About Financial Planning

“Downton Abbey” is a show all about money — those who have it, those who don’t, and the tensions and expectations it can bring. View image | gettyimages.com It stands to reason, then, that we might glean a lesson or two about financial prudence from the British series’ ever-quotable aristocrats. CNN took up that very […]

Tom Clancy’s Estate Plans: Not as Tight as His Novels

In recent months, we’ve had occasion to tell you about a few late celebrities’ apparently airtight estate plans, Robin Williams and Joan Rivers among them. View image | gettyimages.com Celebrities don’t always leave their affairs in such tidy order, though. The very public probate of Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s estate is one recent example. Now we […]