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Florida Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Civil Litigation, Elder Law and Probate for Florida on
Q: How do I answer summons in TN, when I'm in FL. Civil to force sale of my inheritance, gma's house. No notice of probate.

I'm supposed to appear in Hamilton County Civil court to defend against split of property by sale. Relatives lied to me, never had POA, spent Gma's money. I'm broke. My dad died 9 days before Gma. I got severely depressed, overwhelmed. Tried to get atty's to help, but over the last year 2 agreed,... Read more »

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Oct 8, 2019

The ONLY way you can do anything to protect yourself is to go to the hearing and tell the judge everything you told us here.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on
Q: is a MI REVOCABLE TRUST LEGAL IN FL
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Oct 4, 2019

Florida has requirements that are different than just about every other state. If you are moving to Florida or own Florida property you should consult with a Florida attorney about updates that might be needed.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on
Q: In my will it states body to be cremated in FL, my now state of residence. What Happens should I die somewhere else?
Seril L Grossfeld
Seril L Grossfeld answered on Oct 1, 2019

Actually your will is not a good place to put this since your will is dealt with long after your remains are dealt with. If the person charged with carrying out decisions regarding your remains is familiar with your will, that person may insist in doing exactly what you directed, which can be a... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Florida on
Q: My boyfriend just found out his mother died January 2019. He is the only surviving child. How does he find out if there

is a will or probabte?

Phillip William Gunthert
Phillip William Gunthert answered on Sep 23, 2019

You will want to look online in the county where she lived on the clerk of the court website, look her up by name and it will show up if a probate was filed by anyone (spouse or anyone else). If there was a Will, then the Will should have been filed with the clerk of the court in the same county... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on
Q: My mother tried to transfer money from her Mother (My grandmother) into my account after she died. Her Brother's wife...

Is the co-owner but has taken no legal action. Can I just close my account with no legal repercussions? I'm tired of the lack of action in both parties and I don't want the money. The transfer is frozen and I'm not sure what'll happen to both parties and the money should I close the account. Bear... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Sep 23, 2019

If I correctly understand what you are saying, your mother somehow transferred the money to your account, although your mother was not a co-owner of your grandmother's account. How did your mother manage to do that?

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Estate Planning, Landlord - Tenant and Probate for Florida on
Q: My sister died a few weeks ago and she was buying some property and I was living with her helping her pay the payments

She told everyone before she died that it was going to be left to me but the property is in her name how do I go about switching it in my name and make the payments where she left off and how would I go about getting power of attorney to handle her legal paperwork?

Phillip William Gunthert
Phillip William Gunthert answered on Sep 18, 2019

Very sorry for your loss and the passing of your sister, please accept my condolences. You will need to contact a Florida Probate Attorney. There is no power of attorney after death as any power of attorney ends at death. If there is no Will, then the Florida Intestate Statutes (without a will)... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Civil Litigation and Small Claims for Florida on
Q: 5yo Funeral Bill & Fresh Beneficiary Payout

I hadn't spoken to my husband for 8 months when he died 5yrs ago & his sister voluntarily paid his funeral bill w/o asking me for reimbursement tho she asked me to sign consent for cremation as next of kin. No probate was filed; I didn't think he had anything to his name. I recently found out that... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Sep 15, 2019

Yes, there is a statute of limitations; it's four years assuming there is no written agreement. But the sentence "Or my agreement that I repay her?" raises a question; was there such an agreement? If not, you probably would not be obligated on the original claim anyway; you were not legally... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Landlord - Tenant, Probate and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: My father recently sold a home with the promise to split the money among siblings. One of the siblings passed before the

Money was disturbed.the money was split equally among the surving siblings. Does the daughter of the deceased have any right to the cash her father that passed away was getting.

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Sep 3, 2019

If the father decided to split the money equally between his surviving children that was his decision to make. And sine the money given to his children was a gift, there is nothing anyone can do about it. However, just in case the father made a mistake I would advise the children of the sibling who... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on
Q: My husband died before probate completed on his mother's estate. She died Mar '18, he just passed 8/23/19.

He & aunt beneficiaries. No named alternates. Opened estate for my husband but now being told by probate attorney (in MD) that it's in question as to whether his share will go to his estate. Attorney said she'd never seen a will written w/o alternates (really?) so she turned over to another... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Sep 3, 2019

The fact that you mother in law’s estate hadn’t closed by the time your husband died has no bearing. The real question is whether your husband outlived whatever survivorship period applies either by law or in your mother in law’s will. March to August is five months which is far longer than... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Florida on
Q: Hi, I question regarding homestead life estate for Fl. Does her condo have to go through my dad's probate? Thanks!!

My mom passed 2 years ago intestate,my dad was named personal representative but passed before probate was complete. My sister coerced (possible elder abuse) my father to sign a will while he was in ICU under the influence of morphine and other meds leaving everything to her. There are 5 siblings.... Read more »

Seril L Grossfeld
Seril L Grossfeld answered on Aug 30, 2019

Homestead issues are very complicated. Theoretically the homestead does not go into the estate it descends per the statute you indicated, however a court order is necessary to apply this statute, it is not automatic. There would need to be a petition to determine homestead in your mother's estate... Read more »

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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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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