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Annapolis Probate & Estate Administration Law Blog

Maryland residents may be interested in charitable trusts

It is not uncommon for individuals to want to leave part or all of their estate to charitable organizations. If this is an action that interests Maryland residents, they may wish to find out more information on charitable trusts. These trusts could be used to distribute funds to charities in the manner detailed in the terms of the trusts.

One type of charitable trust is a charitable remainder trust, or CRT. With a CRT, and other types of trusts, individuals put funds or assets into the trust, and the money from that trust is paid back to the individuals or to other non-charitable people or organizations. When the trust's term is up -- often when the creator dies -- the remaining funds in the trust are then distributed to the charitable organizations designated by the benefactor. 

Will dispute relating to Ernie Banks' estate seeing setbacks

After a loved one has died, many individuals could expect to receive some sort of inheritance from their loved one's estate. Whether these expectations arise due to their position in the family or because the deceased had expressed such intentions before death, some individuals may be shocked to learn that they have been left out of the wills entirely. In such cases, individuals may be concerned that the details of the will were not the true intentions, and a will dispute could take place.

Maryland residents may be interested in such a dispute currently taking place in another state. Reports indicate that the estate of former professional baseball player Ernie Banks -- who died last year -- is currently under scrutiny. His estranged wife reportedly believes that she was unjustly left out of the will due to pressure put on the man by his long-time friend. The friend was reportedly named the sole beneficiary and executor of the estate.

Info on probate process may help concerned Maryland residents

When individuals lose a loved one, there may be complications that arise within the estate. Some family members may face disagreements when it comes to certain details of the will or other documents, and as a result, they may consider litigation in order to get the problems sorted. If Maryland residents are looking into such an option, they may wish to gain more information on the probate process.

It was recently reported that a family in another state went through such a predicament. A mother and her three children were part of the litigation after the children believed there were issues pertaining to the ownership of a vacation home and rental income left behind by the husband/father. The children filed a lawsuit, and the mother followed up with one of her own, claiming that she was tricked when it came to signing the deed to the vacation home.

Sumner Redstone's granddaughter engaged in trust dispute

When dealing with concerns over the details of a loved one's estate, there may be many obstacles that individuals must face. Maryland residents may be interested in such a situation currently taking place with the estate of Sumner Redstone, the 93-year-old billionaire founder of Viacom. Reports stated that his granddaughter is moving forward with a trust dispute, and his ex-girlfriend is also pursuing litigation.

Redstone's granddaughter reportedly believes that her grandfather made changes to two of his trusts at the desire of his daughter. The granddaughter believes the changes were forced on the man, and she wants her grandfather to complete a mental and physical exam -- presumably to determine his acuity. In addition to the exam, the granddaughter also wants him to submit to a deposition. The second request has apparently been difficult as the man's legal representation claim that the man is feeble when it comes to taking a deposition, though they also claim that he is engaged and vibrant during business decisions.

Wills could be useful instructions for Maryland estates

Though many Maryland residents may believe that their families could effectively handle their estate in the event of their deaths, it may be fitting to leave behind detailed instructions. These instructions may take the form of trusts or wills that dictate which parties may be entitled to what property. These documents could be drawn up legally through various channels. 

Before creating a will, individuals may wish to have their property appraised. Though this step may seem obvious for physical property, intellectual property should not be left out. There are various forms of intellectual property, and by discerning what that property is and the value of it, individuals may be better equipped to leave behind rights and ownership to their desired parties with more peace of mind. 

Prince's estate administration dealing with complications

When there no estate plans have been made and a loved one dies, surviving family members may face complications. An estate administration will likely need to be formed in order to handle the many facets of probate, and individuals may face time-consuming legal processes. These proceedings may feel overwhelming, and many parties may wish to seek assistance in navigating the situation.

Maryland residents may be interested the issues surrounding the surviving family members of the late musical artist Prince, who are currently facing estate complications. Because the singer died without a will, his sister Tyka Nelson sought for a special administrator to be appointed to handle the estate, estimated at nearly $500 million. Additionally, Nelson also named herself and five half-siblings as the remaining heirs to Prince's estate. 

MLK estate administration conflict may entice Maryland residents

After the death of a loved one, issues regarding the estate could arise at any time. It may be years before a dispute takes place, but there could be a chance for such a situation to come about, especially if Maryland family members do not agree on how to handle certain assets. Members of the estate administration often have considerable say in how property is distributed, but other individuals may move forward with litigation in order to have their voices heard.

Such a situation is currently taking place in another state involving certain assets that belonged to Martin Luther King, Jr. Reports indicated that a Bible and Nobel Peace Prize belonging to the late civil rights leader are currently up for dispute between King's two sons and his daughter. The sons have control of the estate and wish to sell the items, but their sister wants the assets to remain in the family.

Will dispute issues may concern Maryland residents

Many Maryland residents may expect there to be a formal reading of the will when they lose a loved one. However, it is not required that a will be read aloud, and if individuals would like to know the contents of a loved one's will, they may need to determine what steps they should take. In the event that there are issues with the document, a will dispute may take place.

When an individual dies, his or her will -- if one was created -- should be filed with the probate court. Once this happens, the document becomes a part of the public record. This means that anyone could have access to the document, and if a family member would like that access, he or she could get a copy from the court. Additionally, if an individual has been named as a beneficiary, it is likely that he or she will also gain a copy of the will. 

Maryland residents may want to talk estate planning with parents

Though another Father's Day has come and gone, many Maryland residents still likely think about the well-being of their fathers and other family members. As individuals grow older, they may also begin to wonder whether their parents have a will or any other estate plans in place. If they are unaware as to whether such documents exist, they may wish to broach the topic of estate planning with their loved ones.

It may be uncomfortable to discuss such a topic because estate plans deal with both money and death. However, facing the discussion head-on could help save stress and complications in the future. The first question to ask is whether any actions have been taken to get end-of-life affairs in order. If plans have been made, the next step would be to determine where those documents are kept and who knows about them.

Fake documents likely to lead to will dispute in Maryland

Many individuals leave behind wills that dictate to whom they wish to leave their funds and other assets. Though these documents are legally binding, there may be instances in which individuals will attempt to pass off fake documents. In such cases, suspicions may arise, and a will dispute could lead to estate litigation in order to determine who is rightfully entitled to what.

Maryland residents may be interested in such a dispute that took place in another state. Reports indicate that a multimillionaire died, and, although he left behind a will, his former caretaker came forward claiming that she found a letter making changes to the will. The supposed changes indicated that the majority of the man's funds were not go to the nonprofit foundation as was originally indicated in the will but instead to the caretaker herself.