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Minnesota Probate and Estate Planning Blog

Where should you keep estate planning documents?

It is never too early to create an estate plan. These documents need to include durable powers of attorney along with healthcare directives. You also need to make sure you update your will regularly as your life changes. 

Once you have an estate plan ready to go, you need to make sure you keep it in the right place so it is readily accessible. These documents will not do much if no one can find them, and the best course of action is to have multiple copies kept at several locations.

My parent died, do I need a probate attorney?

As the adult child of elderly parents, you had likely been aware for some time that one or both of your parents are nearing the end of their lives. However, the impact of a parent's death is never something that one can fully be ready for or expect, regardless of how much pre-planning takes place. 

When a parent dies, the process of distributing his or her assets begins. Even if your parent had a will indicating wishes regarding assets, the process is not as simple as it may seem. You may be wondering whether you need an attorney to assist you, especially if there is family conflict. 

Whom can you trust with your estate

When most people think about estate planning, they spend a long time considering how they want to leave their assets. However, if you do not put the same amount of thought into choosing the personal representative who will administer the estate, you may be putting your envisioned dispositions at risk.

A personal representative, also commonly called an executor, fulfills several serious responsibilities in making sure probate goes smoothly and your assets are distributed according to your wishes. He or she can - and should - have the assistance of a qualified attorney; ultimately, however, he or she should possess the characteristics to do the job properly.

Can I Stop My Kids From Fighting After I Die?

kids fight.jpgYou may already be aware that the death of a relative can bring out raw emotions in most people. Some may withdraw or prefer to remember their loved ones in solitude. Others might let negative emotions take hold, including anger or entitlement. You and other Minnesota residents may want to keep your loved ones from fighting over your estate after your death.

Probate court is part of the normal process of a will. However, probate also comes into play if family members disagree over the terms of a will. Someone may have been disinherited or feel like he or she was slighted. A relative who cared for you in your final years may feel like he or she deserves more than an equal share of the assets. Your children and grandchildren may be confused over which heirlooms they were meant to have or might disagree over who gets what.

How intestate succession can affect an estate

Death is not always an easy topic to discuss. Though an estate plan can be beneficial to virtually anyone, some parties do not see the full value in it.

If you are considering an estate plan, it is important to understand the important aspects of it, such as the will. Without a proper will in place, intestate succession will generally apply to the estate, which has its own unique applications.

Should I Rip Up My TRUST?

Woman ripping up Trust

If you have a family Trust, it may be serving your family and your finances well.

On the other hand, the Trust may be needlessly costing your family a large amount of money now or in the future.

In that case, you should consider dissolving the Trust.

Typical Debts That Are Paid in Probate Proceedings


You may feel relieved to know that your adult children will probably not inherit your debts when you die unless they have co-signed on a loan or credit line. However, this is not to say that your debt will not affect them.

During probate proceedings, one of the duties of the personal representative (also known as the executor) of your estate is to pay off your debts using the assets you have left behind. But which debts will be a drain on your children's inheritance?

Photo by Flickr


canstockphoto23961718.jpg"That woman was only married to Dad for six months before he passed away. Why should she get anything?" That is a question we have heard a number of times in probate cases. It is a difficult subject for many families when the parent has children from a prior marriage, marries a second time and then passes away without a will.

Estate Plan Should Include Nursing Home Option

Can Stock PhotoNo one likes to think about having to enter a nursing home. The idea can seem especially unfathomable when you are in good health, no matter your age. However, the odds that you will never have to go into a nursing home are not something you want to gamble with. Why?

For one thing - and most importantly for quite a few people - a lack of planning could lead to you selling your house and other assets rather than leaving them to your children or other heirs, as you would prefer. In fact, you could have nothing left to probate. It is important to understand that planning for a nursing home does not mean absolutely having to go live in one. It only means being ready for that eventuality financially and legally should the need arise, as it does for many people.


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