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probate Archives

The advantages of joint tenancy with right of survivorship

There may be several advantages for some people in California who want to use joint tenancy with right of survivorship to pass on property although certain conditions must be observed as well. This approach can allow property to pass without going through the probate process.

Singleton's lack of will may lead to family dispute

The death of high-profile movie director John Singleton has thrown the need for estate planning into sharp relief. Singleton, who passed away in Los Angeles in April 2019 at the age of 51 after a sudden stroke, left behind only a long-outdated will. As a result of this lack of planning, family members and potential heirs could be locked in a long-running dispute over the distribution of the estate, and a far smaller portion of Singleton's assets than intended may wind up being shared among his heirs.

The advantages and disadvantages of e-wills

California residents may be interested in the potential benefits that come from creating electronic wills. The Uniform Electronic Wills Act is allowing individuals in some states to create and sign wills online. Before an individual decides if an electronic will is the right option for them, there are some things they need to know.

Family members and others are interested parties in probate

During a California will contest, it is not always clear which persons qualify as interested parties. There may be a number of people who are interested parties despite not being listed in the relevant last will and testament. Generally speaking, all people who are members of the decedent's family qualify as interested parties, or they will be actual parties in a will contest. This is true whether or not they are named in the last will and testament.

Addressing spouse omissions from estate instruments

Many of the clients that have come to see us here at The Law Office of Matthew C. Yu in the past are worried due to their loved ones not having updated their wills following their divorces. If you share the same concern, it likely comes from the assumption that if your now-deceased spouse did not specifically disinherit their ex, then the ex-spouse still stands to inherit their assets. You do not need to worry about this particular issue. Once your spouse's divorce was finalized, any provisions in their will pertaining to their ex-spouse were invalidated. 

Selecting a probate homestead

One of the main reasons why the estate planning process is so important is ensuring that loved ones are cared for once a decedent is gone. Part of that care includes having a roof over one’s head. If, after the death of one on whom you relied for support, the issue of where in Los Angeles you will call home comes up, know you are not alone in such a struggle; many have come to us here at The Law Office of Matthew C Yu with the same concerns. Fortunately, state law has made it possible for you to retain your homestead even after your loved one’s death.

What should be included in a living will?

Living wills are an essential part of an estate plan. While they don't provide instructions on your assets, they do afford vital information to your medical team should you be incapacitated by illness or injury. Not only does this ensure your end-of-life medical care wishes are honored, it also prevents the burden from being thrust upon your family when the time comes. The Mayo Clinic explains a few of the decisions that can be addressed within a living will. 

Replacing a personal representative

When you are an interested party to the estate of a family member or friend in Los Angeles, you know how important the role of the personal representative is in the administration process. It should come as little surprise, then, to see proceedings come to a dramatic halt if said office is vacated. A personal representative can be removed from their role for any number of reasons: they might become physically or emotionally unable to handle the duties that it entails, or they may be removed for breaching their fiduciary duty. Whatever the reason, many of those dealing with such a situation have come to us here at The Law Office of Matthew C. Yu with the same question: now what? 

Approaching probate after a loved one passes away

We have covered a lot of different topics that frequently arise for those who are in the middle of the probate process, from reasons behind disputes to other complications that are not uncommon. For some families, however, simply approaching the probate process, in general, can feel overwhelming, especially for those who are having difficulty recovering from the loss of someone they love. This can be a time of great uncertainty and stress, not to mention sadness. However, it is critical to take the right steps to ensure that things move forward smoothly.

Add trusts to your estate plan

Many people believe that having a last will and testament is the only document you need for California estate planning. While it is generally considered the centerpiece, other tools exist that can help distribute, manage and protect your assets.

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