The SafeEstates Blog

November 3, 2018

Substantive Tip: Review of Estate Plans Prepared in Other States

Watching the caravan of refugees on the nightly news, I am reminded of our freedom to move from state to state within our nation. Nashville continues to attract new residents from other states. We are often asked: “Do I need to replace my estate plan prepared when I lived in another state?” My answer: “Please bring it to me and I will review it with you. Everyone should review their estate plan every five years. If your circumstances have changed and your documents are more than 5 years old, you probably will decide to update your estate plan.” Although wills, trusts, powers of attorney and...

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October 15, 2018

Did You Know You Were Born With an Estate Plan?

You may not know it, but you were already born with an estate plan. It just might not be the right one for you, which is why you don't have to be a millionaire in order to need a will. All states have a framework that dictates how your cash and belongings ought to be distributed when you die. These are known as intestacy laws. Generally, under these laws your estate will pass to your closest living relative: your spouse, your kids, your parents and your siblings. These laws also state how assets are divided among your family members in...

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October 1, 2018

The Queen of Soul’s Legacy

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, sold over 75 million records. She was the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She had four sons by four different men. Rolling Stone observed “While Franklin’s formidable legacy and impact is certain, however, the fate of her estate might end up a more contentious matter.” Aretha Franklin reportedly left no will or trust when she died in August with a reported net worth of $89 million. Her four sons filed probate documents shortly after listing themselves as interested parties in her estate. One document reportedly filed with the Oakland County Probate Court in...

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August 1, 2018

Back to School Tip: Planning for Young Adults

When you celebrate your child’s 18 th birthday, several milestones occur. First, your child registers to vote and experiences the privilege of participating in every local and national election. Second, your parental rights end. This second milestone brings several estate planning concerns. You may notice that your child’s college will send you a tuition invoice but will not send you a report card or other academic information. You may encounter similar barriers communicating with your child’s bank or credit card issuer. In our opinion, every college student should sign adurable power of attorney authorizing a parent or other responsible adult to make business and financial decisions for them...

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July 5, 2018

Love our service? Leave us a Google Review!

If you've had a great experience with Safe Estates, we'd be so honored if you would leave us a Google Review. It helps new customers find us and get help planning their wills, estates and trusts. We appreciate your feedback and strive to provide our customers with the best experience. Leaving a review is quick and easy to do. Click here - this will take you to the Google Maps link of Safe Estates. Scroll down on the left and you'll see the option that says "Write a Review" (see above, circled in purple) Select the "stars", write your review, and...

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June 10, 2018

How Can You Mend a Broken Trust?

Some years ago, we helped a family solve a worrisome trust problem. In his will, the father left most of his estate to his wife. He also created a substantial trust for his children and grandchildren. He expected his three children would survive him, each child would produce several grandchildren, and the trust would continue for as long as the law and his funds allowed. As it turned out, soon after the father died two of his three children died. No grandchildren were living or expected. The trust named no other beneficiary. The father was dead, so he could not change the trust. Their questions: Who gets the...

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May 5, 2018

Survivorship Requirements (and Barbara Bush’s Legacy)

On April 17, 2018, our country lost one of its great first ladies, Barbara Bush. She loved her large family well. She was an avid advocate of literacy and helped break social stigmas toward people with AIDS at the beginning of the epidemic. She and her husband, former president George H. W. Bush, were married for seventy-three (73!) years. Just a day after her funeral, George H. W. Bush was hospitalized with a blood infection. At the writing of this article it appears that he is in recovery, but it raises the question, what happens when two closely related people pass away in close...

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April 5, 2018

Trusts for a Lifetime

Ten or more years ago, a widower came to see me about his estate plan. He was concerned that at his death, his only child, a lovable but irresponsible minor son, would squander or lose his inheritance. I suggested a trust for the son with a responsible trustee standing between the son and the money. My client liked the trust idea and we began to discuss specifics. I asked when the trust should end, and the trust funds be distributed to the son. His answer: “Age 65!” I was a little surprised (the usual response is age 25, 30 or 35). We discussed the pros and cons...

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March 5, 2018

Billy Graham’s Estate

Billy Graham died at the age of 99 on February 21, 2018. He was one of our nation’s best-known Christian evangelists and preached for over 60 years. At this time, we don’t know what type of estate plan Billy Graham had, but we do know that he was one of the wealthiest pastors in the United States. His net worth was estimated to be $25 million dollars at the time of his death. He is also associated with two non-profits, Samaritan’s Purse (revenue of $636 million in 2016) and the Billy Graham Evangelical Association (revenue of $101 million in 2010). Billy Graham is a...

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February 5, 2018

Charles Manson’s Legacy

One of America’s most notorious mass murderers, Charles Manson, died November 19, 2017 from heart failure and colon cancer at age 83. He spent his last 46 years in the Corcoran prison in Kings County, California. A legal battle has begun over the disposition of Manson’s remains and control of book and movie rights, commercial rights to his name and image, his song catalog and recordings, and personal items that may earn thousands of dollars from memorabilia collectors. Manson co-wrote songs recorded by the Beach Boys and Guns N’ Roses which continue to generate royalties. All of this is in addition to his...

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