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Whether a Will or a Revocable Living Trust is best for you depends on your goals and situation.
An estate planning lawyer can help you review the pros and cons of each based on your needs and desires.
A Revocable Living Trust is more flexible than a Will, and may help married persons avoid Minnesota’s estate tax. However, a Revocable Living Trust is more expensive to set up, and requires you to proactively assign various assets to your Trust for your Trust to work properly. » Read more..
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Pre-nuptial agreements are most commonly used, and probably make the most sense, when the persons contemplating marriage have children from a previous marriage and desire to protect the children’s inheritance. Pre-nups may also have merit when the net worth of the two parties are vastly different, or when one party has business interests that need protecting so that a later divorce doesn’t create havoc for the party’s business partners.
However, for most first marriages, a pre-nup may cause more harm than good. » Read more..
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Under Minnesota law, an agent given power of attorney (POA) authority cannot change the beneficiary designations made by the power grantor.
Minnesota’s statutory so-called “short form” power of attorney document may authorize the agent to act regarding beneficiary transactions, but there is no specific authority to select or modify beneficiary designations made by the power grantor. As an example of a transaction, the power grantor’s agent (officially called an attorney-in-fact) may accept or disclaim assets for which the power grantor was named as a beneficiary of someone else’s assets. » Read more..
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Whether Mom intended the cash that she gave to your brother to be a loan or a gift can be a contentious issue when it’s time to divvy up Mom’s estate after Mom’s death.
Mom may have wanted everything she owns divided equally among her three children. But what about that money that Mom gave to your brother before her death? Was it an outright gift? Was it a loan which was to be repaid? Was it an advance against brother’s share of Mom’s estate? Will brother end up with more than his one-third share in the end? » Read more..
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If you want maximum control over your assets, a pre-nuptial agreement is a good idea.
Without a pre-nup, Minnesota law determines who gets what in the event of a divorce or your death. With a pre-nup, your pre-nup contract determines what happens. However, a Minnesota pre-nup must be “procedurally and “substantively fair”. » Read more..
Writing your own obituary has several advantages, doesn’t it?
By writing your own obituary, you spare your grieving family the burden of trying to write one within the few days between your death and funeral or memorial service. And, you also influence what you want people to remember about you.
Obituaries are perhaps the one newspaper item that tends to be kept through the ages. Obituaries are sometimes pasted inside the cover of the family Bible, or kept in a family scrapbook. They are a much beloved resource for persons doing genealogy research. » Read more..
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Most of us are familiar with income taxes and property taxes, but death triggers the discussion of a jungle of other taxes: estate taxes, inheritance taxes, capital gains taxes and gift taxes. What’s the difference? » Read more..
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Definitions of a “good death” vary by person, but most people want some control so that they can end life as they desire. While there’s no way to control all aspects of your death, a Minnesota legal document called a Health Care Directive gives you some choices and control when you can’t speak for yourself. A Health Care Directive incorporates what Minnesotans used to call a “living will”.
» Read more..