Taylor Kaspar Law

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Do I Need A New Will If I Move To Another State?
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: August 2, 2021

Most states will accept a will that was executed properly under another state’s laws. However, there could be differences in the new state’s laws that make certain provisions in your will invalid. Here are a couple things you should review in your will when moving: Your personal representative: Consider whether or not the personal representative you’ve chosen will be able to serve in that role in your new location. Every state will allow an out-of-state personal representative to serve, but some states have special requirements for personal representatives, such as requiring them to post a bond. Other states require non-resident personal representatives to appoint an agent who lives within the state to accept legal documents on behalf of the estate. Marital property: If you are married, consider how your new…Read More

Sending Your Kids Off To College Right
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: July 29, 2021

Does anyone having a kid taking that step? If so, you might be wondering, what estate planning documents should my son or daughter, who just turned 18 and is planning to attend college in the fall, have in place? Here’s what you should know. At age 18, your child is now an adult in the eyes of the law. This means you no longer have the authority to make decisions regarding their medical care, nor will you have access to their finances if something happens to them. Since you are no longer in charge, your child’s greatest liability from a planning perspective is what would happen if they were incapacitated by illness or injury and become unable to make decisions on their own behalf. To prepare for this scenario, you…Read More

Consider This Before You Create A Will Online
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: July 27, 2021

A last will and testament is the most commonly thought-of document when it comes to an estate plan. But really it is only a very small part of an integrated plan that ensures your family stays out of court and out of conflict if and when something happens to you. Do not think you can just write your own will and that will help your family. You have probably seen ads from services that tout the idea that you can write your own will quickly – maybe even while you are in the security line at the airport (seriously, we have seen those ads in our own Facebook feeds). Instead, consider the reality that trying to do so could actually create far more trouble for your loved ones down the…Read More

The Key Differences Between Wills and Trusts
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: August 20, 2020

When discussing estate planning, a will is what most people think of first. Indeed, wills have been the most popular method for passing on assets to heirs for hundreds of years. But wills aren’t your only option. And if you rely on a will alone to pass on what matters, you’re guaranteeing your family has to go to court when you die. In contrast, other estate planning vehicles, such as trusts, which used to be available only to the uber wealthy, are now being used by those of all income levels and asset values to keep their loved ones out of the court process. But determining whether a will or a trust is best for you depends entirely on your personal circumstances. And the fact that estate planning has changed…Read More

Before Agreeing to Serve as Trustee, Carefully Consider the Duties and Obligations Involved—Part 2
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: August 17, 2020

Last week, we shared the first part of this series explaining the powers and duties that come with serving as trustee. Here in part two, we discuss the rest of a trustee’s core responsibilities. Being asked to serve as trustee can be a huge honor—but it's also a major responsibility. Indeed, the job entails a wide array of complex duties, and trustees are both ethically and legally required to effectively execute those functions or face significant liability. To this end, you should thoroughly understand exactly what your role as trustee requires before agreeing to accept the position. Last week, we highlighted three of a trustee's primary functions, and here we continue with that list, starting with one of the most labor-intensive of all duties—managing and accounting for a trust's assets.…Read More

Before Agreeing to Serve as Trustee, Carefully Consider the Duties and Obligations Involved—Part 1
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: August 12, 2020

If a friend or family member has asked you to serve as trustee for their trust upon their death, you should feel honored—this means they consider you among the most honest, reliable, and responsible people they know. However, being a trustee is not only a great honor, it’s also a major responsibility. The job can entail a wide array of complex duties, and you’re both ethically and legally required to effectively execute those functions or face significant liability. Given this, agreeing to serve as trustee is a decision that shouldn’t be made lightly, and you should thoroughly understand exactly what the role requires before giving your answer. Of course, a trustee’s responsibility can vary enormously depending on the size of the estate, the type of trust involved, and the trust’s…Read More

False Security: Is Your Will Legally Valid?
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: August 4, 2020

A last will and testament can ensure your wishes are respected when you die. But if your will isn’t legally valid, those wishes might not actually be carried out, and instead the laws of “intestate succession” would apply, meaning that the state decides who gets your stuff, and it’s very likely not to be who you would choose. If you’ve created a will online, we congratulate you for doing SOMETHING, but we strongly recommend that you have it reviewed and make sure it does what you want, and is actually legally valid. We’ve seen it far too many times: someone THINKS they’ve created a will, because they did something, but the SOMETHING was the WRONG THING, and their family is left to deal with the fallout, confusion and complications that…Read More

7 Events That Necessitate a Review of Your Estate Plan
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: July 29, 2020

Even if you put a totally solid estate plan in place, it can end up proving worthless if it’s not properly updated. Estate planning is not a one-and-done type of deal: It should continuously evolve along with your life circumstances. No matter who you are, your life will inevitably change: families change, laws change, assets change, and goals change. In the absence of any major life events, we recommend reviewing your plan every 2-3 years to make sure its terms are up to date. Yet there are several common life events that require you to immediately update your plan—that is, if you want it to actually work and keep your loved ones out of court and out of conflict. To this end, if any of the following seven events occur,…Read More

Estate Planning Essentials for Parents
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: July 27, 2020

A comprehensive estate plan can protect the things that matter most. For many, this means their property and their family. Including provisions for the care of your children in your estate plan is essential for peace of mind. But many parents struggle with including such provisions as naming a legal guardian for their child in their plan. Indeed, even the fictional parents in the popular television sitcom Modern Family struggled with this issue in an episode. While Jay and his new and much younger wife Gloria agonized and argued about who they should name as a legal guardian for their children, their children were left at risk that if something happened to Jay and Gloria before they decided and properly named guardians in a legal document, a judge would make…Read More

Are You Clear About How Your Parents Estate Plan Will Impact You?
  • By: Taylor Kaspar
  • Published: July 17, 2020

Do your parents have an estate plan? Is it up to date? No matter how rich or poor you or your parents are you need to be asking these and several other questions. When your parents become incapacitated or die, their affairs will become your responsibility, and it will be impossible to ask them to clarify anything. So, if you do not know whether or not they have estate planning in place that will help you best support them, read on. The Best-Case Scenario In a best-case scenario, your parents have an updated estate plan, and they’ve walked you through it. They have provided an inventory of their assets that’s easy for you to find listing out everything they own, how it’s titled, and who it should go to and…Read More

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