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Texas Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Last Will & Testament vs Trust?

my hubby & I married into a blended fam; We created a will together plus wrote specific instructions bout dividing, distributing assets, and property and had signed in front of a notary.

Is that enough or should we have done a Trust?

Is a Trust better than a Will?

Does... Read more »

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt
answered on Apr 3, 2022

It definitely matters. With blended families, I recommend a trust. Here's the reason why:

Let's say you have a will that gives everything to the surviving spouse upon your death. The issue is that the surviving spouse can change his will to give assets only to his kids at his...
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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Family Law for Texas on
Q: Paypal and others asking for legal documentation or a copy of the will that identifies the executor of the estate

My husband died Nov 2020 and I have paypal and other paid subscriptions asking for legal documentation or a copy of the will that identifies the executor of the estate, what do I need to do to get that. My husband did not have any life insurance or major assets other than our home. So there is not... Read more »

Jaime Victor Papa
Jaime Victor Papa
answered on Mar 28, 2022

Good afternoon, you will very likely need to go to probate court. I recommend that you hire an attorney to help you with the probate process.

In Texas when one one spouse dies with or without a Will, generally the other spouse will have to go to probate court. If you do not go to probate...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Can a POA and the Beneficiary on my father’s CD be sued for not dividing the CD among the three daughters per my father
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt
answered on Mar 26, 2022

It really depends. Was there a beneficiary designation? If this POA person was listed as the beneficiary, then legally the CDs probably belong to that person. You may have a claim if your father instructed the POA person to change the beneficiary and the POA person didn't help make the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: My mom passed away Jan 26 2022 ,she didn't have a will,she has 4 children and no spouse ,she owned a home ,do I need a l

She also had over ten thousand dollars in her bank account that my older sister has emptied out excep100 dollars ,can she sell the estate ,do I need a lawyer

Todd Alan Marquardt
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Todd Alan Marquardt
answered on Mar 11, 2022

Yes, you will need an attorney to represent you in Administration and Heirship proceedings. An administrator for the estate would need to be appointed to have the power to sale property. As for the bank account, the account set up would need to be reviewed to see who owed the account. please feel... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Is a Small Estate Affidavit only to be used if the deceased did not have a will?

My father did have a will which has already gone through the probate process. We are doing a stock transfer to my mothers name but we are being told we need a SEA for all accounts to move forward. From what I understand if a will was in place you cannot use a SEA...is this correct? Thanks for your... Read more »

Paul Premack
Paul Premack
answered on Mar 2, 2022

You are correct. A Small Estate Affidavit, pursuant to Texas statute, may only be used when the person died intestate (without a Will), and then only for non-real estate assets that do not exceed $75,000 in value (except for the homestead, which can be included and of higher value if passing to a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: I have 86 year old mom that has now been diagnosed with dementia. I am her POA of her medical, financial accounts.

The POA is notarized and filed. However, due to the pandemic her will has not been notarized nor filed. Now mother is not able to make any decisions. What can I do to allow her unsigned Will to be upheld in what she wants done after her death? Mother would like for her house to be sold and... Read more »

Randy Bryan Ligh
Randy Bryan Ligh
answered on Mar 1, 2022

It is important the you immediately contact an estate planning attorney to discuss your mother's situation. You can bring the unsigned will to the meeting and the attorney can advise whether or not it has any validity. Additionally, the attorney might be able to provide you some guidance... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Securities Law and Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Can the executive of a will over ride the Beneficiary for investments

I am the Beneficiary for the investments my ex-wife made she passed away in2019 her executive of the will told me that she gave everything to her Granddaughter I asked for the paperwork and he told me that I was trying to dig up dirt on my ex-wife. Can he override the Beneficiary for investments

Paul Premack
Paul Premack
answered on Feb 28, 2022

Your divorce eliminated your name as beneficiary on investments. Investments like a mutual fund or stock are allowed to have a "pay on death" or a "transfer on death" designation. Sometimes the accounts will be in both names, with a "right of survivorship". The goal of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: How do I set up a special needs trust account to receive a $3,000 inheritance and, how much does it cost to do myself?

I live in Texas, I will be inheriting abt $3,000 from my fathers passing back in November. I'm on SSI (

Todd Alan Marquardt
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Todd Alan Marquardt
answered on Feb 25, 2022

We are not able to quote services as all cases are different. We would need to speak with you and have a full understanding of what you are needing to give you a correct answer to your question. Please feel free to call our office and schedule a free consultation.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: My father just passed away and I am his only biological child. So, in the matter of his belongings/estate there is only

What steps do I need to take?

Todd Alan Marquardt
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Todd Alan Marquardt
answered on Feb 21, 2022

The next step would be to probate his estate so that assets can be transferred. Probate of the estate can go a few ways but generally is the probate of a Last Will and Testament, which is the ideal probate, or by submitting an Application for Administration with heirship proceedings if there was... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Texas on
Q: How to remove my deceased husband’s name off our homestead residence.

Home passed to me automatically thru joint tenants with right of survivorship deed. I want to add a transfer on death deed for when I pass away but believe I have to remove my husbands name from deed before recording a transfer on death deed

Anthony M. Avery
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Anthony M. Avery
answered on Jan 25, 2022

If you have title as the survivor, no further deed conveyance is needed. Your future interest conveyance will need a proper derivation of title clause, and a recorded affidavit would help. Hire a competent TX attorney to draft that deed.

2 Answers | Asked in Banking, Business Formation, Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Texas on
Q: Can I get a loan for my current house, place it in LLC, rent it out, and use the money from the loan to buy a new house?

I am trying to find the best financial solution to invest in real estate. I have paid off my house and would like to move in 18 months. I like this house and would like to hold on to it as a rental property. I will need the proceeds, either through the sale of the house, or from obtaining a... Read more »

Jaime Victor Papa
Jaime Victor Papa
answered on Jan 24, 2022

Yes, you can place your home into an LLC. I recommend that you meet with a business lawyer to assist you with this process. I also believe you should consider a revocable living trust, because you have homes in separate states. A revocable living trust will allow you to avoid probate court. With... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: Is a certified adult name change order sufficient to attach to an existing Power of Attorney in Texas?

I got married and legally changed my entire name. I am the agent on my parents Statutory Durable and Medical POA', and I am listed as a beneficiary in their wills as well. My financial institution is allowing me to attach a copy of the certified order of my name change to their POA's for... Read more »

Daniel Palmer
Daniel Palmer
answered on Jan 10, 2022

Statutory Durable Powers of Attorney are tricky in that different financial institutions have different requirements. While the certified order may suffice for purposes of one financial institution, it may very well not for another. The safest bet would be to create new powers of attorney which can... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: My husband and I will make our wills in Texas. We are retiring in Puerto Rico. Will out will be valid there?

We have no kids. He is my beneficiary and I am his. He has his mother, I do not. I do have siblings and he has a sibling and a niece. Will parent, sibling or niece be due an inheritance from his or my will, even though we are each other’s beneficiaries?

Paul Premack
Paul Premack
answered on Jan 7, 2022

It is always best to make your estate plan in the jurisdiction where you are living. If you are moving away from Texas to Puerto Rico for retirement, then wait until you have moved, see a lawyer in Puerto Rico, and make your estate plan under PR law.

That said, a valid Texas Will requires...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: : Me and my boyfriend of 12 years bought property together and built a home for retirement.

He wants to put in a trust for kids. If something happens to either one of us can the other change trust or sell property?

Paul Premack
Paul Premack
answered on Jan 7, 2022

There are a number of legal issues you must consider. Since you are not married, the purchase would be classified as creating separate property owned partially by each of you. However, Texas has a "common law marriage" regime that could allow either of you to claim marriage and try to... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Me and my boyfriend of 12 years bought property together and built a home for retirement.

He wants to put property in trust for the kids. If something were to happen to one of us can the other change or sell property?

Todd Alan Marquardt
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Todd Alan Marquardt
answered on Jan 7, 2022

Good Afternoon, Yes we can help with creating a Trust. Please call my office and speak with my calendar coordinator Sarah to schedule a free initial consultation. Thank you for reaching out and we hope to hear from you soon!

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law, Landlord - Tenant and Probate for Texas on
Q: Harris County TX.non-relative squatting in Deceased Parents house.How can I kick him out & Charge back rent?

Mother died 2019. No will or executor of the estate.

I started Probate (June 2020) on her estate because of the obvious fraud and concealment taking place by Stepdad.

Stepdad died in August 2021. So far the probate has gone nowhere, because the attorney I hired was either... Read more »

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter
answered on Dec 16, 2021

The status of the probate case is not clear, but before anyone can do anything with the house, two things have to happen: 1) There must be someone appointed to represent the estate - if there's no will, that means you need an administrator appointed. 2) The administrator would have the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: My uncle set up a trust fund for my daughter, and come to find out shes not , so how can i get that trust fund back.?

i need to put a hold on the account . untill we can determined dna results.

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter
answered on Dec 10, 2021

You didn't set up the account, so it's doubtful you have any right to do anything with it. Talk to the person that set up the account.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Elder Law for Texas on
Q: My husband has early onset Alzheimer's, he is 71 and I am 69. I own property gifted to me as my seperate property.

Can I file transfer on death deed to my children, possibly as a Medicaid asset protection trust devise if he has to go to nursing home?

John Cucci Jr.
John Cucci Jr.
answered on Dec 7, 2021

There are a few different ways to handle your issue. The simplest is a "Life Estate" where you deed the property back to yourself for the remainder of your life, then it automatically goes to the person you wish to obtain the property after you die.

This is great if you have a low...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Legal Malpractice and Probate for Texas on
Q: Are probate judges, court attorneys legally allowed to enrich themselves with probate courts participants real estate
Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter
answered on Dec 2, 2021

No, of course not. Without some basis for why you would ask this, there's nothing more that I can say that would be relevant and helpful. If you have a lawyer, ask them. If not, I suggest you visit with a probate lawyer in your area ASAP to address your concerns.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Do I need to go to court to be able to cash checks made out to the estate of ?

I'm the executor of my grandmothers will.

Paul Premack
Paul Premack
answered on Nov 12, 2021

When you say "I am executor" do you mean that the Will nominates you as Executor, or do you mean that you have a court order admitting the Will to probate and appointing you as Executor and granting you Letters Testamentary?

If you are nominated (but do not have the court order)...
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