Saturday, February 28, 2015

What is Probate? Should Probate be Avoided?

- What is Probate?

- Should I try to avoid Probate with my Estate Plan?

- How can i avoid Probate?

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Advantages of Making a Will Which Can Serve As a Catalyst for Preparing It

Like most legal documents, the importance of a will increases with its acceptance amongst authorities. Making a Will is a complete legal procedure and its advantages are many which make the preparation imperative on the part of the owner. But the legal responsibility for making a Will shouldn't be taken in a negative light and procrastinated about. Instead the very advantages of making a Will could be the single greatest catalyst for the preparation of a Will by the owner of the assets. Below are a few of the major advantages of making a Will that could be the catalyst for the owner to prepare it.

Also we would like to state that people rarely find making a Will to be a pleasant task. Preparing a Will is a metaphor for our own mortality which people don't want to face. But as they say- No one is immortal or escapes death and taxes! Who knows? You could compromise with your own mortal end during the preparation and come out with a better view on life.

The advantages of making a Will are:

No dispute between dependents: There can be no chance of any conflict or dispute between the several dependents of the property if a will is already made. The will perfectly sums up what is left to whom and that itself diffuses any chance of conflict plus the division is also ensured by law of the land. Without a Will, inheritance disputes often run into years and decades which are not a viable option.

Lack of ambiguity: A Will is a legal document that clearly states the division of the property and that in itself clearly puts out the lack of ambiguity.

Property Management: The property can now be easily managed or divided according to the directions given in the Will and that leads to a better sense of property management.

Appointment of Executor/Guardian or Trustee: Will often appoints a responsible person as a Executor or a Trustee who acts as the overseer of the property. This also is important when the beneficiary is a minor or of unsound mind and cannot look after the assets.

Disclosure: All the property hidden or otherwise has to be correctly shown while making a Will. This procedure eliminates the chances of any secretive assets and the process will be highly beneficial to the beneficiaries of the How to make a will. offers easy, legal, affordable and online Will Writing solution - write a Will in just 30 minutes - no calls, no meetings, no advocates, etc..
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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Why Making a Will Is An Important Task for Your Family And You

All our lives we work hard to ensure that our family never has to face a difficult time ever but we promptly forget all about them at the end. We are talking about preparing wills or last testaments that people almost always don't prepare or unnecessarily delay due to a psychological block. The psychological block is our inherent fear of death which is aggravated during the making of a will. The preparation of a will is almost an indication of our own mortality and that is something none of us want to accept.

But whether we accept it or not, our mortality is the only truth and we must keep the responsibility of taking care of our family with us. A will could save our family from a host of troubles out of which some could be huge hassles that will need a lot of time and resources to solve. Say for example, the most common form of trouble that comes from the non preparation of a will is property disputes. Normal property disputes could siphon off huge amounts of time and resources. Plus there is no guarantee that the problem will be solved within a stipulated time. Property disputes are known to stretch for years and some even extend till the death of the supposed beneficiary. This means there are chances that your family might never get to enjoy the property that rightfully belongs to them.

Does that statement depress you? But that's simply the beginning as there will be more and more problems associated with non-existence of a will.

The next problem that could occur is the proper division of the property and in case of common ownership of a property- the lack of a trust fund. These are legal wrangles that could again put pressure on your family or dear one's resources.

Making a will is the best form of property management as the methods of division are expressly mentioned in the will. Without the existence of a will there are chances that the beneficiaries or dependents will have a tough fight in their hands to ensure their right on the property. Then there are properties which have common ownership and for those you need to create a trust fund. But that's again not possible without the presence of a will or testament.

Make a will immediately as this will not only guarantee the peace and security of your loved ones but also give you the strength to accept your own impending mortality.

Making a last will or testament is no easy task but Willjini can help you in doing so. How to make a will.
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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Don't "Lose" Your Living Will - Storage Places to Avoid

Question: I just came back from my attorney with my estate planning documents.  One of my documents is a "living will," but I have no idea where to put it.  How about putting it where it will be safe, like in my bank's safe deposit box?

Answer: Remember that a living will is only useful if it is found!  You should store your living will (also called an "advance healthcare directive") where it will be found when it is truly needed.

If your family has no idea where your living will is, the document is useless.  If it is never found, it is a legal document without any effect.  It will never serve any function.  The purpose of having a living will in the first place is to grant authority to your agent: Through that document your agent is given the legal authority to make essential healthcare decisions on your behalf.  But if your agent cannot find the document, he or she may never be able to make the decisions that you intend.

Where should you never store your living will?  Here are some places to avoid, the first being exactly where you are thinking of putting it:

Your safe deposit box.  Sorry, but think again!  If your agent does not have access to your bank safe deposit box, obviously he or she may never be able to get the living will in time so that it can be used.

Your home safe.  This is like placing your healthcare directives in the bank's vault.  If only you have the combination to the safe, then your agent will probably never find it.

Giving it to someone unknown to your agent.  This is another way to "lose" your directives -- giving the living will to someone other than your agent, without your agent's knowledge.  Again: If your agent has no idea where the living will is, then how can he or she get it?

Giving the original to someone at odds with your agent.  Some of you may have intra-family turmoil.  Obviously, never give your living will with someone who often fights with or is at odds with your designated agent.  Remember: The purpose of the living will is to ensure that your wishes are carried out.  PERIOD.  Your directives are not to be used in a way to be "fair" to another family member, or for any purpose other than ensuring that your wishes are followed.

Putting it where nobody would ever look.  This is a general category.  Never place your living will in a secret place, or in the middle of a "mess."  It should be kept in a place known to your agent, or otherwise where important papers are kept.

So many people go to the expense of preparing a living will, but give little thought as to where it should be kept.  Even more important, they place their living wills in entirely inappropriate places.  Make sure that your agent knows where you have stored your living will.

Disclaimer: The information in this article is not legal advice, and the use of it does not create an attorney-client relationship. Any liability that might arise from your use or reliance on this article or any links from this article is expressly disclaimed. This article is not to be acted upon as if it were legal advice, and is subject to change without notice, or may include obsolete or dated information, or information not relevant to your jurisdiction. If you require legal services, you should consult with an attorney.

As a licensed attorney located in the Los Angeles San Gabriel Valley, Larry Stratton is in a position to coach and advise you, and to help you plan for your future. The Law Offices of Larry D. Stratton [] specializes in estate planning, business formation and appellate practice. Larry Stratton also blogs on estate and financial planning issues at Planner's Thoughts.
Larry Stratton is a graduate of Whittier College School of Law, which is a member school of the ABA and the AALS. He has represented numerous clients in the California Court of Appeal, and is admitted to practice in all California courts, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the U.S. Tax Court, and also the United States Supreme Court. From 1983 to 1984, he was a member of the Whittier Law Review. Larry Stratton is also a Registered Investment Advisor, and currently speaks on estate and financial planning topics in Southern California.
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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Monday, February 23, 2015

Personal Finance Tips - How to Set Up a Financial Power of Attorney To Help Handle Your Affairs

If you have a good deal of money or assets it is probably a good idea that when you are planning your estate that you also consider setting up a financial power of attorney. What this is, is a document that will give another person the legal power or right to handle all of your financial affairs. To do this you don't even have to go to court. You just need to be of sound mind when you set up this type of an arrangement.

You being the principal in this document will then choose someone called the agent who will handle your affairs should there come a time in which for whatever reason, you can't. They can also be asked to handle your affairs if you are going to be gone and won't be able to take care of your affairs while you are away.

When you sit down to figure this out you are going to need to decide upon just how much authority that you are going to allow the agent to have. You may decide to give them general powers to handle all of it or you may just give him power to just take care of certain kinds of transactions like your stocks and bonds. They can even be asked to take care of financial issues while you are away on an extended vacation if need be.

You also need to figure out just how long you want their authority to last. It can be durable or it can be nondurable. A nondurable agent will lose their authority the minute you should become incapacitated in any way. So if you want to have them to continue on should you not be able to take care of things if you were incapacitated then you would want to make sure that you made them a durable agent.

You also need to figure out when the power of attorney will take effect. Understand that it will go into effect immediately as soon as the document is signed unless you set down a date in the document when it will take effect. Some documents with durable agents will not kick in until you might be declared incompetent or incapacitated by a doctor. You will also need to make sure there is a stipulation in the document that dictates when the power of attorney is ended, for instance you might stipulate that once a doctor says you are going to be OK and will be recovering, then the power of the agent will end.

Once you have your document written up you will need to have it signed by all parties involved and most states will require that you have the document notarized in front of two witnesses. If you don't want to do all of this yourself, you can always pay an attorney to write up your document for you.

When you decide to write up this kind of a document, the person that you pick needs to be someone you really believe that you know and trust well enough to honestly take care of your affairs for you whenever you might not be able to. Also remember that anything is possible so you might want to also name a second agent in case something should happen to the first one. Also make sure that if you would like to pay this person for performing their agent duties to state this in your document, otherwise they don't get paid for doing this.

Once you have your document written up and signed you should give a copy of it to your agent, a copy for yourself and you should also make sure that any agencies or businesses you do business with have copies as well and that would be banks, brokers, IRS or SSI.

Note: You can revoke your power of attorney at any time during your arrangement with them as long as you are mentally stable and you make sure that you send them a letter in writing stating you are going to revoke the document.

For more free Personal Finance Information download Amy's Free Personal Finance Information Pack at and join thousands of other people who are taking control of their Personal Finances. For other free information on a variety of issues please visit
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Sunday, February 22, 2015

The Proper Estate Planning Tips in Case of an Emergency!

The proper estate planning documents you need in case of emergency! Nobody likes the thought of an emergency cutting a life short. Especially for families, it's really hard to imagine what might happen if there were some sort of tragic accident, an unforeseen illness, or a catastrophic disaster that resulted in the casualty of a vital family member. Without the necessary legal documents such as a living will or power or attorney, the wellbeing of a family may be threatened and your expressed or even written wishes may not necessarily be honored.

If someone is involved in a serious accident, but is injured to the point they are unable to communicate their wishes, a healthcare power of attorney is given the legitimate right to make major healthcare decisions on the patient's behalf. For example, if you do not wish to be placed on life support for an extended period of time, the only way to make this preference legal is taking the proper steps to create lawfully acceptable paperwork and documentation.

When someone dies without any legally authorized instruction for the delegation of their belongings and investments, all property goes into a very complex court proceeding where assets are given to the spouse, next of kin, or separated between various related parties. In this situation, a third party has full control over how these items and funds are distributed, regardless if the deceased had verbally expressed other wishes. A legalized will is absolutely necessary to ensure that your belongings are properly taken care of after your passing.

Have these legal documents prepared today so that you ensure that your family is taken care of in the event of an emergency.

Prepared Will is a legally enforceable declaration of how a person wishes his or her property to be distributed after death.

Health Care Power of Attorney is a legal form that allows an individual to empower another with decisions regarding his or her healthcare and medical treatment.

Living Will Directive is a written statement detailing a person's desires regarding their medical treatment in circumstances in which they are no longer able to express informed consent.

I know the fees associated with the creation of these documents can become incredibly expensive if prepared by a private lawyer. I also know that people are looking to the web for do it yourself forms which can turn into a nightmare if not done correctly. In many states these documents if not done by an attorney can be thrown out and not accepted by a court.

There are affordable solutions so that your documents are prepared by an attorney and reviewed annually for you, your spouse, and covered family members.

When it comes to protecting your family and your wishes, don't waste any more time or put your loved ones at risk any longer.

Have your legal documents prepared today by an attorney so that you ensure that your family is taken care of in the event of an emergency. For information on having an attorney create these documents and help protect your family against all legal issues for a few dollars a week visit
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Saturday, February 21, 2015

What Is Estate Planning and Is It Useful?

Estate planning creates a plan for distribution of your assets after you die. Most of us are familiar with a common product of estate planning: the will. Featured in TV shows and in everyday conversations, sometimes, the discussion surrounding this popular topic is not favorable.

We've seen people contesting wills, challenging their family members, feeling cheated by the administrators of wills and by the law and we've seen them arguing through lawyers about what wills mean how they should be executed. Other forms of estate planning exist to reduce the amount of conflict surrounding decisions.

Health care decisions can be included in estate planning; a health care proxy exists so that a chosen person can act out the desires of an incapacitated person still under medical care.

When it comes to the distribution of their wealth and medical decisions, multiple measures exist to enable the dead and the severely injured a means of executing their own desires. However, even in the case where no formal plans are made, heirs do receive some forethought in terms of the law.

The law of intestacy communicates that even if no measures are taken to distribute assets by a deceased party, those assets will still go to the deceased person's heirs. The law of intestacy has the most staying power in situations where it is least likely to be challenged by those wanting more. For insurance, according to Attorney Sean W. Scott of Virtual Law Office, this law works with a small number of assets and a with a small number of heirs.

In each of these cases, one can imagine there would be less conflict involved. With less to fight over, less fights can ensue. The same is likely true with less beneficiaries; as heirs likely know one another well when smaller in number, less family tension can arise. Less instances of certain heirs feeling more worthy than others to certain possessions may exist. The likelihood that an individual or set of siblings would usurp others' belongings may be reduced. And general confusion arising from miscommunication and a lack of cemented durable relationships may possibly decrease with a smaller set of heirs. None of these suggestions are set in stone, yet corresponding data would be a more than interesting dinner topic.

Scott emphasizes the financial advantages of estate planning, sharing that taking certain precautions can save money for heirs receiving portions of estates. As lawyers stay on the job, working to settle issues between family members or between the state and family members, their tabs continue running. Evaluating the multiple options may familiarize you with the best decisions for your situation, reducing stress and increasing savings for your loved ones after you pass.

Estate planning businesses offer the best in financial services to their target markets through use of digital content. Al Tinas, (C. Catchings), provides high-quality content to estate planning experts as well as other business leaders.
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Friday, February 20, 2015

Top 6 Most Frequently Asked Questions in Expunging Your DUI Conviction Records in California

Like most states in US, California too allows you to expunge your DUI conviction record. Expunging your DUI conviction record will help you get rid of all the problems resulting from your offense and make you to experience the life like before. Regardless of whether your offense is misdemeanor or felony, they can usually be expunged. Following are the FAQ's which are sure to provide you an insight about expunging your DUI records in California:

What is expungement?

Expungement means sealing your DUI conviction record which practically means giving petition to the court to expunge your record and the court replaces your plea as not guilty and then dismisses your case. So when applying for a job or under any other circumstances you need not have to disclose that you have been convicted.

Who Is Eligible For expungement in California?

You are eligible for expungement:

  • if you are a first DUI offender who has only one charge for either a misdemeanor or felony
  • a year has passed since conviction
  • if you have completed probation successfully and not on probation for another offense
  • have no charges pending
  • have paid all the fines ordered by the court
How much does it cost to file for expungement? 
It costs between $50 and $80 to file for expunging your record. 
Will they need my presence at the court? 
No, your expungement lawyer can do it for you. 
What will I benefit from expunging my DUI conviction record? 
There are a lot you will benefit from expunging your record such as employment, licensing etc,. 
What expungement won't do? 
Your expunged case can still be used for increasing your punishment when you again caught up for a DUI or other criminal cases.
The DUI Process manual provides solution related to expunging your DUI record, getting your driver's license back, saving a lot of money on your auto insurance and even saving money throughout your DUI process no matter what state (US) you are located in. Article Source:

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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Uncontested Divorce - Definition, Terms and Conditions

An Uncontested Divorce is a legal procedure in which the spouses mutually agree on certain terms and conditions, in order to adjourn their marriage. An uncontested divorce can be executed successfully if the spouses comply to a shared agreement in the matters related to the property partition, financial matters, any kind of support activities related to their children, and other litigious affairs.

A major benefit of consenting with an uncontested divorce is that unlike contested divorce, it doesn't have to deal with emotional and financial issues, is relatively inexpensive and quick, since most of the times the spouses may not find any need of an attorney or a court case for the divorce, if they are in good terms with each other, and plan to go with proper understanding. This is quite helpful essentially when the couple has much less assets to deal with and no children.

There are many "Do it yourself" forms available at concerned regulatory agencies, which can assist you in going ahead with the uncontested divorce activity yourself, without the need of any outside legal authority or attorney.But, in case of the issues for child support or the partition of community property, one must follow up with attorney related to divorce, before they proceed with signing off any legal documents.

Divorce is a quite tedious and sometimes displeasing procedure.Despite having mutual consent on many of the terms, there still exist loads of matters that need to be taken care of, before ending up the marriage. The couple needs to be capable enough to distinguish these issues and resolve them as soon as they can. To decide whether it is appropriate for a couple to go ahead with an uncontested divorce rather than a contested one, there are certain points that can be used as reference:

1) Are both the spouses agreeing to go for a divorce, or one of them still wants to re-establish the relationship?

2) Are all the financial issues, modes of income and other related assets properly understood by both the spouses, so that they can divide and decide on them accordingly?

3) In case, there are children, are all the issues regarding the child care and support,custody, periodic meetings and visits decided yet?

4) Are all the issues getting settled with mutual consent, and are devoid of any hard feelings?

5) Are both the partners in accord with the honesty or authenticity of the other partner's notions,regarding the resolution of these issues?

If either of the above mentioned questions, has an answer as "yes", then it is appropriate to go for an uncontested divorce.

Uncontested divorce can be carried on easily and without much hassles, but they can be derogatory to certain individuals in case the people involved in the divorce, do not know much about their appropriate rights with respect to the alimony amount, partition of pension, earnings from real estate, and other modes of income.

Hence, it is always advisable to consult an attorney or other legal authorities related to divorce, even while going on with the uncontested divorce, where you and your partner mutually agree to all the terms.
Uncontested Divorce.
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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Jeffrey Volosin Discusses The Difference Between LLC And C Corps for Businesses

As being a part of the business world, it is important to understand different terms. Educating oneself on these terms not only helps with learning and understanding business conversation, but lets people know that the businessman (or woman) is serious and truly knowledgeable in the field. The two terms professionals should be able to know are a limited liability company (LLC) and a C corporation. While they are both structures, they both have their different traits and can allow many businessmen and businesswomen know what is most suitable for a business. Both have an indefinite term of life, but LLCs having plenty of distinguishing traits.

A limited liability company (better known as an LLC) is a specific type of business entity that mixes the personal liability protection of a corporation with the tax benefits of a partnership. It is a structure that offers protection to a company's owner. An LLC is best suited for small businesses with very few shareholders.

A limited liability company's taxation is a single taxation, which means the interests of the profit or loss is passed to members who are in the top 39.6% bracket. An LLC has the option to elect to be taxed as a corporation. Only the members own and manage an LLC. It has limited liability. In other words, the liability is not exceeded by the amount invested by members. Meetings for members are not required, but activities should be recorded.

A C corporation is a complete opposite. It is a specific type of business entity that is taxed separate from its owners. It is used for medium and large-sized corporations and owned by its shareholders; this is different from an LLC since LLCs deal with small businesses with a few shareholders. C corporations are managed by officers while LLCs are managed by the members or managing members themselves.

Another trait of C corporations is that it uses a double taxation in lieu of a single taxation that is seen in LLCs. Income is taxed roughly 34% and shareholders pay taxes on profits distributed. The choice of taxation structures are not allowed with C corporations, they must be taxed at a corporate tax rate. Shareholders are required to attend board meetings whereas stated for LLCs, meetings are not required. While these differences may be broad between the two types of corporate structures, knowing the differences allows professionals to make the right assessments for future businesses.

If you are looking for more information on incorporating your small business, please visit to get find out more.
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Monday, February 16, 2015

LLC Tips - Converting a General Partnership to a Limited Liability Company

You and your business partner have been running your business as general partnership for the past several years. You have been reading about limited liability companies (LLCs) and have decided that your business should really be operated as an LLC. Is it too late? Can you still convert your business from a general partnership to an LLC? Yes, you can!

Why would a business want convert to a limited liability company from a partnership? The reason that a business would want to convert from a general partnership to an LLC is to allow the partners to shield themselves personal liability for obligations of the business. Every partner in a general partnership is liability for all of the debts of the business. A member of an LLC, on the other hand is can generally only lose his contribution to the LLC, nothing more. He is not responsible for the debts of the LLC.

The limitation typically only applies to liabilities arising after the conversion. It is unlikely that a general partner will be released from personal liability to the partnership's creditors for the business's debts existing before the conversion. A member will avoid personal liability for debts incurred by the LLC but will remain personally liable for debts of the general partnership which are transferred to and assumed by the LLC in the conversion.

The procedures for converting a general partnership into an LLC differs from state to state. Originally, most state laws contained no provision allowing one type of business entity to change into an LLC. At that time, if you had a partnership, you had to first dissolve the partnership and distribute its properties and liabilities to all of the partners. At that point, the partners would contribute those assets and liabilities to a newly-formed LLC and become members in the new LLC.

Today, most states have statutory provisions that allow a partnership to be converted into an LLC in one simple step. For example, in Illinois, once the partners approve the conversion, a Statement of Conversion is filed along with Articles of Organization for the new LLC. It is as simple as that.
The conversion is also simple from a tax standpoint. In several private letter rulings the IRS has addressed the conversion of a general partnership into an LLC. The rulings have clarified that neither the partners nor the partnership recognize any gain or loss on the conversion. Also, the partnership continues to exist uninterrupted for tax purposes and, for computing capital gain if he later disposes of his LLC membership interest, the length of time that the partner owned his partnership interest carries over to his LLC interest.

An LLC is by far the most popular choice for new businesses being formed today. If you chose to start your business as a general partnership, the good news is that it is not too late to make the change!

David K. Staub is a business attorney who writes and lectures frequently on various business, legal and tax topics. He is the author of the Limited Liability Company Center, a free resource of information on how to organize an LLC.
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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Grief - Preparing for Loss Through The Living Will

My wife of 31 years, Lynne, lost her life to glioblastoma in 2010 following a battle lasting almost four years against the deadly disease. Glioblastoma is a stage 4 brain tumor, known for its fast-growth and recurring properties. As her family caregiver, I learned about many topics that surface during the care of someone facing a life-threatening illness. This article covers the topic of grief and how preparing a living will helped with my grief. I hope that the lessons I learned will encourage you to create a living will.

Despite all of the good intentions early in life to prepare a living will, neither Lynne nor I had done so. After her initial brain surgery and recovery, we both prepared a living will and health care power of attorney. Preparing the living will to document Lynne's advanced directives enabled us to discuss Lynne's decisions regarding the end of her life. The health care power of attorney allowed me to represent Lynne when she could not make decisions herself. The discussions we had and documenting them for legal purposes helped me significantly during the final week of her life and the weeks following her death. Knowing that the decisions I made on Lynne's behalf were those that she desired lifted a heavy weight from my heart. The doubts that surfaced in my mind following her death eased slightly, as I knew I was following her desires.

The many discussions that Lynne and I shared about death and dying during her illness were paramount to my grief recovery. Family members, who openly communicate about death, tend fare better than families with less open communication (Black, as cited in Carmon, Western, Miller, Pearson, & Fowler, 2010). One reaction to grief is personal growth. This reaction seems most predominant in those that openly communicate about their grief. Other reactions to grief include such things as anger, blame, despair, and panic (Carmon, et al., 2010). The discussions between Lynne and me helped to reduce the uneasiness we held about the dying process. In the final months of her life, I began to sense Lynne's own internal preparation for that day. My selfish nature desired that she live but she showed signs of exhaustion from the three-year battle. As I reflect on those discussions, they are some of my most treasured and valuable memories.

It is impossible to prepare completely or anticipate all of the emotions and other concerns we face during a loss. I believe that preparing and anticipating the loss causes thinking and actions that help to minimize, if only slightly, the grief of the loss. Reminiscing and expressing emotions with family and friends provide effective coping tools after the death. For me and my hope for you is that the hopelessness turns into hope, and the grief turns into joy, as you learn to push forward and reflect on the positive memories and the legacy of the life that was lost.


Carmon, A. F., Western, K. J., Miller, A. N., Pearson, J. C., & Fowler, M. R. (2010). Grieving Those We've Lost: An Examination of Family Communication Patterns and Grief Reactions. Communication Research Reports, 27(3),

Suddenly a Caregiver Sharing a family's experience and lessons learned to help you through the unexpected responsibility of becoming a family caregiver. Available in eBook and Paperback
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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Friday, February 13, 2015

Advance Healthcare Directives - Be Sure to Write Your Living Will

With modern medical technology advancements, it is becoming more and more important to consider writing an advanced healthcare directive. There are several kinds of advanced healthcare directives. A living will is one form of an advanced healthcare directive. It is a document that specifies what you want done medically if you are no longer capable of making decisions for yourself. A medical power of attorney or healthcare proxy is another form that appoints a specific person to make decisions for you if you are incapacitated. It is advised that a person have both documents prepared and in place long before they will ever be needed.

With today's advancement in medical care many people are left confined to nursing homes. Many elderly are in a vegetative state, fed through feeding tubes while their bodies slowly die. The emotional and financial burden the families of these patients experience is overwhelming. Lives are prolonged but there is no real quality of life. An advanced directive can prevent this from happening to those you love.

The living will was first proposed by Luis Kutner in 1969. His purpose was to make sure the living were able to make their wishes known when they were no longer able to speak for themselves. The living will gives direction to medical professionals about what procedures a person wants and doesn't want. It can forbid the use of medical equipment used to sustain life or direct it be discontinued when it only prolongs death. It can be general or specific depending on the wishes of the person writing it.

Advanced directives should be regularly updated to make sure they cover current medical technology. As advancements are made, changes need to be made to reflect that advancement. A living will that is current is more likely to be acknowledged and followed.

It is advised that a living will be combined with a healthcare proxy to assure your wishes are followed. No document can fully cover all the circumstances that might occur. Having a person on the scene making immediate decisions is important. By designating a person in advance to make decisions, you can be reassured that no decisions are made that might conflict with your desires.

The comfort and peace of mind an advanced healthcare directive gives is invaluable. Knowing you will not be a burden to your family allows you to calmly live knowing any necessary medical decisions will be made by someone you trust.

Bryan Sims writes about various topics including health issues and product information for the online audience. Find information about the newest website at which helps people find super saver deals on Peerless TV mounts and more information about various types of wall mounts for televisions.
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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Probate Law 101

Probate law is a legal process that no one ever wants to deal with. When someone who has a valid will passes away an administrative process goes into effect which determines how the individual's property and belongings (termed their estate) will be handled. The process of this is great to know as both the person who is writing the will and the people who will be involved in the process should the unthinkable happen so that everything is understood and further pain is avoided. Estate planning is a lot better than no estate planning at all where motives have historically been influenced by relationships between friends and family and the value of the estate.

What is probate?

The term probate can be used in a variety of related ways. However the most common context is known as the process that occurs within the legal system administering your estate after someone has deceased. Each person listed on the will, must apply for a grant of Probate.

What if I have no will?

The Probate Law will only take effect when a valid will has been written by the deceased person. If the deceased does not have a recognized will, then the probate is invalid and an administrator needs to be made official (generally the next of kin). This process can be complicated and takes a lot longer than if a will was written.

What is included in an estate?

The probate lawfully considers an estate to be all assets that are owned fully or partially by the deceased. This includes future pay checks from work before passing, household goods, property and anything else that ownership can be determined by various forms of legal documents. All of the above can be probated by a local Probate Council except for real estate. Probate law for real estate is under the jurisdiction that the property is located. If someone wants to contest the ownership of any part of the estate, they must go through the appropriate legal channels.

Getting the process started?

If someone has deceased, their will is not official until it has been submitted for probate. Therefore when estate planning, you will need to tell someone where they can locate your will if required. Although there are some parts of the probate court procedures that are informal, there are severe penalties if the will is not produced within a certain time, is concealed or destroyed.

Estate planning is not enjoyable to think about. However, by doing so you do make things clearer for those who are mentioned in your will. The probate law may seem like a nuisance given the circumstances that the law is applied however is required though to keep everyone in check. It also simplifies the process as there have been situations where assets of the deceased are fought over for years resulting in ongoing pain for all parties involved. Ultimately, who do you want to go through your underwear draw?
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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

LLC Or Corporation - Which is Best For My Business?

Both the LLC and corporation are legal entities that provide liability protection for their owners. While the corporation has been around longer, the limited liability company was created to offer the same level of protection. However, an LLC is designed specifically to cater toward the small business owner. It offers the same liability protection as a corporation but allows a much more simple operational structure with a lesser number of formalities.

LLC v. Corporation - TAX MATTERS

The limited liability company offers more tax choices than a corporation. Owners of an LLC can elect for profits to be taxed pursuant to a pass through structure (single layer of taxation) or pursuant to a C corporation (double taxation) or S corporation structure (single taxation but with many requirements and ongoing compliance requirements).

The corporation only has the choice of C corporation or S corporation taxation. Small business owners many times prefer the LLC pass through taxation because it allows them to avoid double taxation of profits and in many cases be able to take business losses to reduce taxes from other income WITHOUT having to worry about meeting a laundry list of S corporation requirements.

While the S corporation structure is available to both types of entities, it only allows a certain # of owners, all owners must be persons (so no entities) and US or permanent residents of the United States. There are other requirements as well so check with your accountant for the specific details.

As a business evolves, things change and with an S corporation tax status, you always need to be on top of the latest S corporation requirements. The failure to meet a requirement, even if accidental, can result in disastrous tax liability and penalties.

The S corporation can have some tax benefits over the standard pass through when it comes to self employment. In these cases, you have the option of S corporation taxation with either the LLC or corporation.


An LLC also gives an LLC business much more flexibility when it comes to ownership structure. The LLC laws allow for the company to tailor what each owner gets in terms of voting control and distributions.
 The corporation has a set ownership structure. Ownership is defined by a share of stock and each share of stock provides a set right when it comes to voting and profits rights. The LLC can choose this standard structure but does have the flexibility to customize it if needed without having to create multiple classes of ownership.

Accordingly, an LLC is more attractive when it comes to bringing in investment capital or services partners because it offers more options to address specific business situations.


In addition, a limited liability company can have a very simple single layer of management (known as member-managed) or the management structure can be structured with a central governing body (manager managed).

When it comes to operations, the LLC is not required to meet the same level of formalities and paperwork as a corporation.

The corporation laws generally impose a set management structure for a corporation which requires a Board of Directors as a central body of management. In addition, in most states, there are required meetings and certain governance documents that must be entered into each year.

While it is still recommended that an LLC have some simple governance paperwork to document major business decisions, it is comforting to know that the laws do not require it for the legal entity to qualify as an LLC and get LLC benefits.

In deciding LLC or corporation, the LLC offers the same management structure imposed upon for a standard corporation but also allows for a much simpler one or a more complex one if needed to protect investors or the business.


Given the simplicity and flexibility of the limited liability company, the LLC was designed to offer all the benefits of a corporation but without the disadvantages. As a result, the number of LLC formations each year greatly surpass incorporations when it comes to small businesses.

However, there are some situations where the corporation may be the better entity choice. If you plan on taking your business public with an initial public offering, you should use a corporation. Also, if your business requires professional company investors such as venture capitalists, the venture capitalists will generally require that your business be a corporation.

As noted above, the decision of LLC or corporation depends on your specific situation and the best person to advise you is a competent attorney after having met with you to discuss your particular circumstances.

For a more in-depth discussion about the LLC or Corporation comparison of for a FREE LLC GUIDE, visit The LLC Learning Center at
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Monday, February 9, 2015

Importance of an Advanced Directive

The purpose of a health care advanced directive is to give somebody you know the ability to make your healthcare decisions. It gives a person the authority to make all of your healthcare decisions when you are in a stage of mental incapacity. This document will instruct the person to make all decisions in accordance with the instructions written down. It will give this person the right to access all medical records that are needed for someone to make decisions involving your healthcare and to apply for your benefits.

You need to get this document signed as soon as possible, because you never know when you will end up in an incapacitated state. A person is presumed to be capable of making health care decisions, unless determined to be incapacitated. The physician assigned to care for you decides whether or not you are incapacitated, and will ask for documents signed by you when deemed necessary.

Your advanced directive is the most important document for your attending physician to have from you. If you don't have it, there will be too many problems for the doctor when it comes time to decide whether or not you need surgery or serious medical treatment. The doctor will also have problems dealing with your family or friends who haven't been designated as your surrogate, and won't know the proper person to contact. Your health care advanced directive also helps to distinguish between your asset protection and your healthcare needs, and won't allow anyone to interfere with your Durable Power of Attorney or Last Will and Testament.

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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Advance Directives: A Special Insurance Policy That Everybody Needs

What is insurance? A thing providing protection against a possible eventuality.

Given the advances in medical technology, there are many possible circumstances in which my body may be kept alive even if my mind may have ceased to function. This could result from accident or disease. It could occur in the near or distant future. Under these circumstances, I have very specific desires of things that I want to be done and others that I want to stop or prevent from occurring. Can I take out an insurance policy that will protect me against institutions or people taking actions that are against my wishes? Yes, it's called an Advance Directive.

This form of insurance can be acquired without an agent or attorney. To get this coverage you must invest some time and energy to get your state's forms and fill them out. This is usually a two-part form with the first section designating who can make health care decisions for you in the event that you are not capable. This is usually called a Medical Power of Attorney designation. The second part, sometimes referred to as a living will, is where you are able to give physicians and family specific instructions regarding your care. The forms can be downloaded on-line from several different sources or can be picked up from any hospital in your area.

The mechanics of the process can be a little difficult and uncomfortable. This small discomfort allows for procrastination to jump in and convince you that this is a good idea and you really should do it someday, but not today. Maybe you'll do it next week or next month. One way to help you get over the hurdle of procrastination is to really look at some of the many benefits that you get from completing this task.

Three benefits of Advance Directives:

  • Peace of mind from knowing that you have insurance in place.
  • A huge gift will be given to your family and loved ones. In the event that it is needed, they will be greatly helped and assured that you are guiding their decisions.
  • Protection of your estate and financial assets. Medical institutions are allowed to utilize their technology to prolong life even when the outcome may be futile. This process can drain your financial resources and possibly impoverish your family.

When you discipline yourself to create an advance directive, set aside adequate time to consider specific details. The more specific you make your wishes, the better the quality of your policy. After completing the process you will enjoy a deep sense of satisfaction. So set a deadline to help you guide the process and make it happen.

Mark has gained elder care [] and health care expertise through many years of experience and extensive research. If you are interested in elder care issues, please check out []
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Saturday, February 7, 2015

Durable Powers of Attorney in Wills and Estate Planning

Planning how your estate shall be divided, distributed and disposed of doesn't only mean creating a last will and testament or putting up a trust for someone. Estate planning also means preparing for the unexpected, such as falling ill to an incurable disease or becoming incapacitated later in life. In this regard, you'll need the help of someone you completely trust to put your affairs in order even when you're no longer able to make those important decisions or even communicate your wishes. Drafting durable powers of attorney gives this person you appointed the legal means to sign documents, make decisions, and represent you in court.

The Medical Power of Attorney and The Living Will

Actually, the functions of a medical power of attorney play in tandem to the directives of a living will. They're both health care directives, but the durable power of attorney for health care focuses solely on assigning someone the legal duty to make decisions related to your illness or health condition. It needs a living will, which contains your instructions and wishes, including end-of-life decisions. Once you've lost the capacity to think or act on your own, such as when you've fallen into a coma, this durable power of attorney takes effect and hands over the responsibility for your personal health and well-being to your agent or attorney-in-fact.

You'll have tighter control over managing your living will, estate planning, and health care directives when you specify that these shall only take effect after a physician has confirmed that you lacked the mental and physical capacity. In this case, you have a springing durable power attorney in hand. The term capacity here legally pertains to a person's lack of understanding of the nature of his medical condition, the health care options open to him, and the possible consequences from making these choices. In addition, that person also loses the ability to speak out or make hand gestures to relay his personal preferences for medical care. This is where a health care declaration becomes an invaluable document in your estate planning.

The Financial Power of Attorney

Through a durable financial power attorney, you give another person - someone you fully trust to act in your best interests - the legal authority to act on your behalf. However, this power attorney for finances doesn't hand over absolute authority to your proxy. You may limit or extend your agent's legal access to your financial accounts. Generally, your financial surrogate can file and pay your taxes, manage your business, handle financial transactions in your name, access your bank accounts, claim an inheritance, collect Social Security and other benefits, and make use of your assets and properties to pay off debts and provide for your family's daily expenses.

These two powers of attorney must be specified as durable when filed. Otherwise, they won't take effect once you were found lacking capacity to think and act for your well-being. A divorce ends both documents when the agent is also the spouse. The court may revoke an agent's authority under a power of attorney for health care when it finds that the agent has acted improperly. A second person named in the document takes over as an alternate agent.

Toby King is a legal consultant and associate, working for a prestigious law firm in Sydney. He provides expert advice on family law, de facto relationships, and financial agreements. Find out more info on wills estate planning at ClinchLongLetherbarrow online.
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Friday, February 6, 2015

Uncontested Divorce - The Basics

If you and your husband or wife have decided that you want to get divorced, you want the legal process of dissolving your marriage to be as simple as possible. If that is the case you will want to know more about uncontested divorces, which have a number of benefits for both of you. Here are some basic ideas and suggestions, as well as information about uncontested divorce that will help you move forward.

First of all you should be aware that an uncontested divorce doesn't necessarily mean you agree on the reasons for the divorce. It is not the same as a 'no fault' divorce. What it means is that you and your 'soon to be ex' have agreed that you want to get through it in a civilised way. It means that you have agreed that the property acquired during the marriage is being divided fairly along with any savings, pensions or debts. You should also both feel that the separation of assets pays attention to the needs of each of you. You may want to get a lawyer to check over the finer points if your finances are complicated but if not, you can get uncontested divorce forms online. If you can negotiate the terms between you it is far less traumatic and much cheaper.

One key point is that you should take your time. You should never rush the process, having an uncontested divorce usually speeds up the process dramatically, even when you take time to negotiate. You can usually sort things out in a few weeks whereas some contested divorces can go on for months with bitter arguments causing upset, especially to any children involved.

There are many advantages to an uncontested divorce, one of which is, undoubtedly, the cost. An 'uncontested divorce' means that both of you agree to all the terms of divorce, which means you don't have to pay for additional court fees or even pay an attorney for the extra time they would have to spend on sorting out the division of y our assets. This can be very helpful if money is tight as you don't have to spend large sums of money going to court. You could perhaps save it towards your living expenses after the divorce or for your children, or some of the larger expenses that you may not foresee when you are first on your own.

If you do decide to opt for a lawyer, you need to remember that your family lawyer cannot act for both of you, even if the divorce is uncontested and fairly amicable. One of the things you should decide early on is which of you will use the family lawyer, unless you both decide to go elsewhere or to do it yourself. Your lawyer will meet with you to sort out all the documents that are involved in getting a divorce. You will the opportunity to see what is in the documents before they go to your spouse and then to the court. The more you can sort out beforehand, the better it will be. There may be times when both of you will have to meet with your respective lawyers to go over the terms of your divorce, even if you have agreed the terms if there are complicated matters to sort out.

The key thing is to keep open the lines of communication so that your divorce can be as simple as possible.

Divorce is a traumatic time, even if it is mutually agreed. Sall Greays has experience in helping people deal with difficult situations in many different relationship areas, making it less painful for all concerned. You can read more at Online Divorce Papers [] where she discusses the best ways to deal with all aspects of uncontested divorce []
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Thursday, February 5, 2015

What is a Living Will and Medical Power of Attorney?

A living will is designed to do much more than divide your personal belongings amongst your closest friends and relatives. It is a way to make sure everyone knows what you want or do not want in terms of medical care in the event you are one day unable to speak up for yourself.

A living will is very similar to a medical power of attorney (POA), which is chosen by you personally ahead of time.

If you have ever had to make a critical medical decision for yourself you know that they are very hard to decide on. When someone is in a life threatening situation, it is even harder for family members to agree on what is best for the person. There is often tense disagreement and frustration when a decision cannot be mutually reached.

A living will allows you to clear up the disagreement by giving definite word on what you want for yourself. You may not be able to speak up for yourself and say what you do or do not want in the event you become extremely ill or get injured, but if there is a will already in place then there will be no mistaking exactly what you want done.

A couple things that are typically clarified in this type of document include a determination on whether you want CPR if your heart stops beating and whether you should be placed on life support or not if it is required. Both of these things are excruciating for family members to decide, but it becomes easier when they have your direct statement and know they are carrying out your wishes.

The selection of a medical power of attorney like a financial power of attorney is usually done along with the will. You select this person yourself and give them the right to speak on your behalf in medical situations, given you are unable to do so for yourself. Their word will be taken as your own.

The internet is very helpful researching the living will or medical power of attorney. You can even find free from that offer everything from the financial power of attorney to standard wills.
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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

What is a Durable Financial Power of Attorney?

A durable financial power of attorney (POA) is a document that grants authority to someone of your choosing to handle your financial matters. This can include paying your bills, accessing your bank accounts and even selling or buying assets and negotiating real estate deals.

A regular Durable POA allows the named agent to step in at any time and doesn't require a disability to be active. For example, your wife could sign a financial document for you while you are out town.

A "springing" Durable Power of Attorney on the other hand, only gives your financial agent access to your finances when a doctor has diagnosed you as mentally or physically unable to handle your own affairs. In the case of a "springing" durable POA, you will be in full control of your own financial matters while you are of sound mind and body.

If your family depends upon you for financial security, a POA can allow them to continue using your assets if you should become disabled. If you do not name a power of attorney your spouse or family will have to get a court order to handle your finances. This will require a judge to declare you "incompetent" and could delay paying bills and paying for any medical care you may need.

Your Durable Financial POA is only valid while you are still alive. Upon your death, control of your financial assets will pass to your estate executor or your trustee if you have named one.

In addition, a Durable Financial POA will also terminate automatically if you cancel it, a court deems it invalid, your spouse was the agent and you divorce, or if the named agent is not available. Considering this last case, it is a good idea to name a back-up financial agent.

Paul Kraft is co-founder and administrative principal of Frank & Kraft, P.C., one of the leading law firms in Indiana in the area of estate planning as well as business, tax and financial planning. For more information on financial power of attorney and some other estate planning services, visit our website.
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Sunday, February 1, 2015

What Happens During Probate

Probate is the court process that determines whether your will is legally valid. The probate court is also where your estate is officially distributed to your creditors and the beneficiaries under your will. Depending on the value and complexity of your estate, the probate process can take several months .... or it may be eligible for a simplified process.