Trust Planning

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Modifying or Terminating a Trust
You can modify or end some types of trusts anytime, but other types may never be changed. ... Read more

A Special Needs Trust Can Help You Qualify for Other Benefits
Government programs such as Medicaid and Social Security help low-income disabled persons access essential medical and caregiver services. Ownership of even modest amounts of property or income can disqualify you from such programs. To address this problem, you can set up a special trust to preserve ... Read more

Charitable Trusts Are Generally Irrevocable
If you want your estate plan to include some of your favorite charities, there are generally two types of charitable trusts to consider. Each type of charitable trust has unique characteristics and, depending on which one you choose, you may even see some immediate tax savings. Most Charitable Trusts ... Read more

Managing Trust Taxes
Depending on how trust documents are drafted, trust income can be taxable to beneficiaries, to you, to the trust, or to a combination of all three. Maybe you want to pay the tax so your beneficiaries don't have to. Maybe you prefer that the trust pay them separately. When creating your trust, you have ... Read more

When Is a Revocable Trust a Good Idea?
One type of trust that is commonly used by estate planning lawyers is the revocable living trust, which allows you to retain control over your personal assets. However, revocable living trusts aren't for everyone. In some cases, the disadvantages can outweigh the benefits. A Revocable Living Trust Gives ... Read more

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Trusts And Estates Questions

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This is actually a complicated legal issue, which will be governed in large part by the terms of the trust.  When you say "New York Trust", I am not sure what you mean.  Do you mean it was p ...Read more

There might be some outstanding lien against the property that needs to be resolved.  If not, you should demand to have the monies the lawyer is holding released.  Call and find out the reas ...Read more

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The 8 Stages of California Estate & Trust Litigation: Investigation (Part 1

Litigation is a process requiring continual legal analysis — the application of facts to the law. Thorough investigation of the facts, and legal research to determine the applicable law, are the ... Read more

The 8 Stages of California Estate & Trust Litigation (Full guide)

This series describes the eight stages of litigation clients can expect in civil or probate litigation. Although the procedures and timetables vary somewhat among Contra Costa, Alameda, San Francisco, ... Read more

Arbitration Clauses in California Trusts

Under the right circumstances, binding arbitration can be a welcome alternative to court litigation. Arbitration can save the litigants time and money, and provide a forum designed specifically to add ... Read more

The High Cost of Litigation in Contra Costa County

Lamenting the effects of recent budget cuts on the California court system, a Contra Costa County judge said recently that “there is no civil justice system left in California.” While he m ... Read more

Guidance for Estate and Trust Litigants, Part VI: Get Advice Before You Say

Although in most cases litigants are not required to hire an attorney, if you have read the previous posts in this series, you will not be surprised that we counsel against “doing it yourself.&# ... Read more

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