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Questions Answered by Nina Whitehurst
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Tennessee on
Q: Can someone name 2 persons (daughters) as "co-attorneys in fact" in their Durable Power of Attorney document?

My 92 year old father is updating his estate planning documents after the passing of my mother. He wants to appoint both myself and my sister as co-attorneys in fact since we are both helping him with his financial and medical affairs. He doesn't want to name one person as primary and the... View More

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answered on May 7, 2024

There is no law that prohibits co-attorneys in fact. However, conventional wisdom is to avoid it because having co-attorneys in fact can become unwieldy, especially if they get sideways with each other. If they must act together and they are unable to work together then the effective result is... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Tax Law and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Is a Irrevocable trust legally obligated to pay income taxes on monetary cash gifts it receives ?

Id like to know:

Are Irrevocable trusts legally responsible to pay income taxes on any monetary cash gifts they receive within a single calendar year or is such money gifts the trusts acquire, exempt from any taxation requirements ?

(fyi: In this particular situation the money gifts... View More

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answered on Apr 26, 2024

At the federal level gifts are not taxable to the recipient. The gift giver might owe gift tax but that is highly unlikely to apply to such small amounts. Some states might have lower gift tax exemptions but, again, even those would be unlikely to impact such small gift amounts.

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: I am an heir to property in Knoxville,Tennessee, along with 5 other heirs. How do we get our names on the property/deed?

Some of the property and the house is going to be taken by the city to widen the road. How do we make sure we are compensated for the land and house when the city takes it?

One of the heirs doesn’t want any property, does she relinquish her share prior to us getting the title, or does... View More

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answered on Apr 13, 2024

The title can be updated using a simple affidavit that is recorded in the land records, but the title will not be marketable until at least one year has elapsed since date of death or the other assets of the decedent

have been probated and the estate was solvent.

If one of the heirs...
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3 Answers | Asked in Probate for California on
Q: My sister is my mom's POA but refuses to help me care for my mom.

She's taken her phone, iPad and other devices. I cook my mom food, feed her, give her her medicine, change her, take her to the bathroom, take her to all her appointments. And I use my mom's car(which she gave me me) to take her to her many appointments. And prior to my sister taking all... View More

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answered on Apr 8, 2024

This is a terrible situation, and it saddens me whenever I hear of circumstances like this. You can and should report your sister's behavior to Adult Protective Services. You might also think about filing a police report for theft with respect to any funds or things your sister has stolen... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for California on
Q: My sister and I are co-trustees inheriting our mother’s home 50/50. My sister moved into the home without permission.

She won’t reply to any emails or messages. I want to enter the property with my key and look at assets and paperwork. Can I enter the house legally. Can the police make me leave?

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answered on Apr 6, 2024

Your question cannot be answered in full for lack of complete information. My guess is that you might still be in the administrative stage of post-death trust administration. As co-trustees, each of you owes a duty to estate, creditors and beneficiaries to manage the trust assets for their benefit,... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Q: I have a loan, the loaner passed away. Beneficiary is handing his estate and now want the checks made out to them.

I have a loan contract that the loaner passed away a few months ago. The person handling the estate just informed me that they are having issues cashing my checks that are made out to the deceased name. Now they want me to write the checks in their name going forward. They did not open a bank... View More

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answered on Apr 3, 2024

It is very perilous for you to do what they are asking! What if they are lying about who the proper heir(s) is/are? You could give them a lot of money and then when the proper heirs come along you have to pay the real heirs all over again. Don't do it!

Keep making the checks payable...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for New York on
Q: If I set up a Totten trust with the executor of my estate as the beneficiary of my various financial accounts can she,

upon my death use all the various funds to pay my heirs without her paying gift taxes. Thank you for your time and attention.

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answered on Mar 30, 2024

You are better off not naming any beneficiaries for any of your accounts and allow the executor of your will, after court appointment, to collect them and distribute them according to the provisions of your will. The problem with your proposed strategy is the person you meant to be your executor... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law, Civil Litigation and Probate for Arizona on
Q: Father passed away, his name forged on quitclaim, notary found to not be diligent and got commission revoked.

My sister forged our dads name on a quitclaim deed, I had filed a complaint on the notary which originally resulted in her favor but this week I got a letter from the secretary of the state saying they found multiple things she did wrong with the investigation and the fact that they don't... View More

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answered on Mar 21, 2024

You need a real estate litigation attorney to file a lawsuit against your sister to have the deed declared void due to forgery. Do not delay. But in the meantime, if you get a whiff of the house going under contract then contact the escrow company and pointedly inform them that there is reason to... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Banking, Elder Law and Estate Planning for Georgia on
Q: Bro & I have POA for 93 yr old Mom.He takes her $. Mom has to sell house to pay for care. Where put $ keep from him?

She is in asst livg. He uses credit card for her meds etc & 4 himself & checks from her SS. I live diff state. Property val near $1 m. All her cash is gone, for her care. What vehicle to use for sale proceeds ensure safety of $?

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answered on Mar 21, 2024

If your brother is stealing from your mother, you might need to file a petition to have yourself appointed as your mother‘s conservator. Then, as conservator, you can sue your brother for the funds he stole. And, as conservator, you will have the sole right to manage her financial affairs going... View More

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Alabama on
Q: If I get the deed to a home but don’t assume the loan of the deceased borrower, what happens?

I want a home where I wasn’t on the loan. The deceased borrower was the only one on the loan and deed. I know I can’t be forced to assume the loan or make the payments but I want to stay in the home without refinancing in my name. Can the loan stay in the names of the deceased only and... View More

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answered on Mar 20, 2024

Your question cannot be answered without additional information about your relationship to the borrower.

Are you a close family member that is inheriting the house? If yes, then you do not need to refinance. You just need to keep making the payments.

Are you a buyer purchasing...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Estate Planning for Alabama on
Q: Do I have to get mortgage in my name if my spouse dies and I get the deed? They were the sole name on loan/deed.

I will get the deed to a home owned by my spouse signed over to me from his estate. However, I don’t want to go through the process of trying to refinance in my name. If his estate stays open, can I get the deed to the property but also keep the loan in his name forever? Will the mortgage company... View More

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answered on Mar 20, 2024

Under federal law the lender may NOT call the loan due and may NOT force you to refinance. As the borrower's "successor in interest" you are entitled to receive the monthly statements going forward. As long as you keep up the payments, the lender may not foreclose.

You may...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: If executor of estate sells house before transferring it to heirs, will it still receive stepped-up cost basis?

A woman died in January 2023 without a will. She had four children that are heirs to the estate according to Colorado intestate succession laws. The house was not transferred to the heirs prior to its sale in March 2024, but was sold on behalf of the estate by the executor (who is also one of the... View More

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answered on Mar 15, 2024

Property owned by a decedent gets a step up (or down) to fair market value as of the date of death. That holds regardless of whether the property is distributed in kind to the heirs or is sold and then cash distributed to the heirs. the only difference is who pays the capital gains taxes, if any.... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Family Law for New Hampshire on
Q: Is there a way to have an adult name change without the name on my birth certificate going away? Can it be an AKA?

I was born under one last name. I was step-parent adopted, and my last name changed, as a child. I was married, and my last name changed again.

Is there a way to go back to the last name I was born under, before the adoption, without losing my adopted last name on my birth certificate? Is... View More

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answered on Mar 7, 2024

In every state there is a legal method for changing your legal name without changing the name on your birth certificate. You might even find self help forms on the court’s website. If not, you should hire an attorney to help you navigate the process.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Maryland on
Q: Can I transfer a house that I own into my mom's revocable living trust in Maryland?

I own a fully paid house in Rockville MD. I want to sell it to my mom but also have her put it into a trust with me as the beneficiary. Can I transfer the deed directly into her trust, or does the title first need to be transferred to my mom before she can transfer it into her trust?

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answered on Feb 25, 2024

Yes, your mother’s trust can be the buyer, and you can be the seller, with a deed to match. This makes perfect sense if it truly is an arm’s-length transaction.

However, if what you are actually doing is gifting the house to her, then you should not do that without talking to an...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Elder Law for New Jersey on
Q: I want to know if I can gift my car and IRA account to my disabled child without a penalty from medicaid.

I read that this is possible and would like to know how to do it.

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answered on Feb 21, 2024

The car is easy. Just transfer the title to your child, but only do this if your child is capable of managing a car. If he/she is not, then see an estate planning attorney about other options.

The IRA is not so easy. If you cash out the IRA and retitle it to your child, that will be a...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wyoming on
Q: I was told that any amendment to a trust will not go into effect for 5 years from the date of the amendment. True or not
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answered on Feb 20, 2024

Trust amendments usually have immediate effect. More likely than not there is a misunderstanding regarding what you were told.

Ultimately the only way an attorney can give you actual, personalized advice on this issue would be to review the trust and the amendment and discuss with you...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Probate for Kansas on
Q: I need help answering a petition filed against my deceased mother's property in accordance to K S.A 79-2801

My mother passed away in 2012 I have been at the property since then and paid taxes on property until now I have no other heirs to battle for the rights to property but this action filed against the real estate is not what I was planning on happening please some advice on this matter

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answered on Feb 20, 2024

There is no “answer” that can be provided to your question because we have no idea what the petition is about. Also, attorneys in this forum are not allowed to solicit clients. This means that no attorney can write “contact me”.

But you can contact an attorney in your area yourself...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: I have a 98 year old father. He has a will. Is there a way to avoid probate on is condo or does his will do that?

His will splits his estate 50-50 between my sister and myself. I have financial POA.

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answered on Feb 9, 2024

A will absolutely does not avoid probate. Rather, it guarantees probate. Avoidance of probate requires a different technique such as a trust or a transfer on death designation/document. An estate planning attorney can help you choose the best probate-avoidance technique for you.

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Civil Litigation and Probate for North Carolina on
Q: If u and ur sister inherite a house she living in it I'm not can I move in it or can I make her leave it's her and 3 kid

It's her and her oldest kids that think everything is theirs

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answered on Jan 28, 2024

If you are now a co-owner you do have the right to live in the house. If you cannot cohabit with your sister peacefully then you have the right to petition a court to force the sale of the house and split the proceeds. That threat might be enough to convince her to buy you out because litigation... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Estate Planning for Alabama on
Q: Can a mortgage company call a loan due if the person who can assume the loan is being difficult or non responsive?

I am the executor of an estate. A beneficiary of a home (due to a person being deceased) has been granted status as successor of interest. The payments have been kept up via automatic payments under the deceased persons account. If with these circumstances, can the loan be called DUE NOW if he... View More

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answered on Jan 23, 2024

A home mortgage lender may NOT call a loan due on account of the death of the borrower if the lender has been informed that the property will be inherited by a relative. Your facts did not say whether or not this is case, but that fact is highly relevant. If a relative is the... View More

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