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Florida Estate Planning Questions & Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on

Q: Under Florida estate law can a spouses Will list assets to biological children from a previous marriage?

This question would be best answered by a Florida estate attorney and is referring to my mom and her now deceased husband who were both on their second marriage and both had children from a previous marriage. When he died he made a list of almost all the household furnishings stating those... Read more »

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Aug 23, 2019

That's the purpose of a will, to leave assets to people of your choosing that would not necessarily be entitled to those assets if there was not a will. If the furnishings are in a house where your mother resides there might be some question of ownership only by your father. If the assets were... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: If my stepdad and I own 50/50 of my moms house after probate and he wants to move out will he still be responsible for

Mortgage.

Nina Whitehurst answered on Aug 22, 2019

If your dad signed the note, yes he will remain liable.

2 Answers | Asked in Constitutional Law and Estate Planning for Florida on

Q: denied homestead b/c trust words don't meet FL statutes. They know I have lived here 40 yrs! FED. Constitutional rights?

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Aug 21, 2019

Amend the trust. If you put your homestead into a trust, a separate entity you need to comply with the law to get the homestead exemption.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: In Florida, what type of "frozen" account is used for Depository of liquid estate assests? Deposits YES/withdrawals NO

3rd party Bank associate says to open a CD in estate's name, but ALL liquid assests not in one place so would locking some in a CD prevent adding liquid assests obtained later?

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Aug 16, 2019

Normally assets of an estate would be deposited in a depository account that would mean a court order would be required for distribution of assets from the account. Normally estate assets are not deposited in a time account such as a CD which might prevent access to those assets without penalty... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Florida on

Q: My grandmother is passing down her small land in Puerto Rico; to me and she lives in Florida. What do I need to do?

Can a lawyer in Florida help? Could I do this on my own?

Charles M. Baron answered on Aug 15, 2019

Your question is vague as to what you mean by "is passing down" the property. Is she living and wishes to make an estate plan for passing of her property after death? Is she living and wants to convey it to you right now? Is she dead and arranged for it to pass to you in a Will, Trust, or Deed?... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on

Q: I live in Florida but will move to Texas in 8 months. Can I do a trust hear that is good in Texas

Nina Whitehurst answered on Aug 10, 2019

It will probably be valid in Texas but it might not be suitable for a Texas transplant due to differences in state laws and taxes.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: I am living on a piece of land that my dad gave to my brother can his children evict me before probate Court

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Aug 1, 2019

More facts are needed about the way your brother owns the property and the conditions under which you have the right of possession to answer this, as well as whether an estate for your brother is currently pending.

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2 Answers | Asked in Elder Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: We want to sell my Mom's home in Florida, but don't know where to legally place the funds afterwards. Help please?!?!

I am Mom's POA. She has dementia and we feel skilled nursing is in her near future. Medicaid information is confusing us regarding selling, also, we fear we may lose out on moneys to care for her when she needs it the most. Thank you.

Lauren Nagel Richardson answered on Jul 24, 2019

You need to contact an experienced elder law attorney who can explain your options to you. If your mom's home is her homestead, and she is now in need of skilled nursing and may qualify for Medicaid, please take the following into consideration:

Homestead is not a countable asset; it is...
Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Florida on

Q: My father passed and the mortgage was under his name . My mom is on the deed and has not told the mortgage company

Scared to tell the mortgage company because she can’t refinace the loan in her name.

Phillip William Gunthert answered on Jul 21, 2019

Very sorry for your loss and the passing of your father, please accept my condolences. Your mother will not have to refinance the property, there are substantial protections in place as it relates to homestead rights and spousal rights and protections under the Garn St. Germain Depository Act as... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: My father passed away in 2012 in Florida and i didnt get any inheritence. What can I do?

Hello I live in Florida and my father passed away in 2012. He was married to my step mother and they had a child together and he also had a child from another relationship so 3 children 3 different relationships. I was never named as a party in the probate case and didnt get any inheritence... Read more »

Jennifer Isaksen answered on Jul 20, 2019

I'm sorry for your loss and I'm sure you are looking for closure. Your inheritance would depend upon whether there was a Will and the nature of the assets left. Most assets are transferred outside of probate if the accounts are properly designated and titled. It's possible there was no probate.... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on

Q: Do trustee fees to be paid (to the co-trustee of a trust) have to be contained within trust accountings?

The co-trustee for my father's estate decided at the last minute to deduct $100,000 from the final distribution to the beneficaries, for her trustee fee. Is this allowed? Are there any cases that you can refer me to?

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Jul 19, 2019

Yes trustee's fees have to be contained within a final accounting, and there should not be distribution until all beneficiaries have seen the accounting and approved the accounting. Beneficiaries can also object to the accounting, particularly such a last minute large fee. Trusts in Florida are... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Tax Law for Florida on

Q: My mom and brother are my beneficiaries. If I die first, money goes to Mom. If she dies, will my step-father inherit?

I want to make sure that my step-father, who is legally married to my Mom inherits nothing.

Andrew M Steiger answered on Jul 18, 2019

This is definitely a tricky planning area. The starting point for this type of question typically is whether the money would pass through a will, trust, IRA, joint bank account, etc. A trust may be best to handle this situation depending on the state law where you are domiciled at death. You... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: If I wait two years to administer my late husbands estate, will I bypass creditors and his estranged son?

I have enough funds to pay my bills for a few years and would rather not go through probate or contact his son whom he hasn’t seen in 20 years. I am sure he does not even know he died. The estate is worth over the 75k max for simplified probate .

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Jul 18, 2019

If you wait the two years you will avoid the creditors. Questionable about the estranged son, may depend on whether there is a will and what it says about his son.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: How much will it cost me to file a disposition of personal property without administration in Broward County, Florida?

My mother lived with me for 15 years, her last year she lived with me in hospice at home. She left no money behind nor an estate. If I were to do this can anyone seeking money from her come after me?

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Jul 18, 2019

The filing fee for the procedure is $232 per the clerk's website, but if there are no assets why would you need to file this procedure. Opening any type of estate would be to have authority to sell or distribute assets, if there are none you do not need to open an estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: My grandmothers family is not honoring her will and possibly forging documents. What can I do?

Okay so to fill this out completely. My grandmother had her will devised that the assets would be shared between her three children. My two uncles and my father. My father had passed before my grandmother did so the assets would be split between his children. Me and my siblings. The main source of... Read more »

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Jul 17, 2019

You should have seen an attorney long before assets were sold. Normally someone has to be appointed personal representative to accumulate and distribute the assets. If the house was in your grandmother's name only there should have been some court order allowing the sale or determining heirs... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on

Q: If my now deceased dad have a pending injury lawsuit, does the funds pertaining to the lawsuit goes to his wife?

Or his children?

David Hughes Harris answered on Jul 17, 2019

If a lawsuit is pending in court and the plaintiff dies, then a Suggestion of Death is filed, an estate created in the Probate Court, and the Estate is then substituted in for the deceased plaintiff.

Only an Estate is legally recognized to proceed as a party under FL law. The Estate is...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Intellectual Property and Patents (Intellectual Property) for Florida on

Q: If a person doesn't have a will but has sole rights to a patent, does Florida probate assign the nearest kin the IP?

corporation with zero value but with license to use and shares owned by deceased also

Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Jul 12, 2019

The shares owned by the deceased, like any other property, go to the heirs as specified in the intestacy statutes.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on

Q: someone i have had a disagreement with has my power of attournrey. ihave moved to fl from tn. the poa was made in tn.

what do i need to do to cancel this poa?

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Jul 9, 2019

You need to execute a cancellation of the power of attorney. Notify the holder of the power of attorney, in writing and possibly record on the public records where the holder is located.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on

Q: My mother is 92 and starting to fall. My sister checked with some long-term care facilities who told her that my mother

Would have to sell all of her assets and give the funds to the facility in order to get in I find that ludicrous is this how it's supposed to work

Sherri Stinson answered on Jul 7, 2019

The facility is talking about Medicaid planning. My guess is that your mother is going to run out of assets but presently has either too much in income or assets to qualify for Medicaid. The income cap limit for 2019 is $2,313 gross per month and the asset limit is $2,000 in countable assets for... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate for Florida on

Q: My Aunt recently passed in FL. No marriage or kids, I'm her next of kin. I am handling her funeral arrangements.

I am from AZ. How can I become her executor or power of attorney to be allowed to clear her estate & obtain some medical records? There was no will, her estate value seems to be around $1k.

I am funding her arrangements myself, cremation, marker, urn, etc.

I know she has a small... Read more »

Seril L Grossfeld answered on Jul 3, 2019

Unfortunately there is not free help in Florida. There is a procedure for administration of small estates which basically involves sending the forms to the clerk and the Judge will enter an order distributing the assets to you. The clerk may have the forms available for download on their website.... Read more »

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