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Annapolis Probate & Estate Administration Law Blog

5 important steps to take when forming a business partnership

Forming a partnership can be a very successful step in creating a strong business plan. As you build a foundation for a business of any size, you need different skill sets and investments, and you may not be able to do it on your own. Businesses often prosper and grow faster when complementary skills and assets are added into the partnership. Unfortunately, a business partnership done wrong can also spell doom for a company in any industry. If you follow these steps when forming a business partnership, you may avoid major pitfalls that negatively affect your company.

4 ways to build a business reputation

Are you the type of individual who thinks it's exciting to constantly be coming up with new ideas, and whose brain is always occupied with the next big product or invention? If so, you may be an ideal candidate to start your own business. Your business will only be as successful as your reputation, and even the most useful products can fail if customers can't count on you to deliver them a positive experience. To give your business a great reputation from the start, we have a few ways to begin building.

Five common challenges that businesses face

Businesses have several challenges in common, regardless of company size. Large corporations may cite hiring concerns as their biggest worry, a problem small companies may list near the bottom of the challenges they face. While all companies want to maximize profits and minimize expenses, their priorities and methods of doing business vary considerably. Here are five common challenges that all businesses face.

5 important parts of a successful business plan

Starting a new business is about more than just having a great idea and some cash to fund it. Without the right components in your business plan, your ideas may flop and you may become that has-been before you even have a chance to get off the ground. When you're thinking of starting a business and want to be successful for more than a few months, your business plan should have the following five vital elements.

Estate administration issues may affect Maryland residents

Maryland residents may be interested in an estate-related legal proceeding that is currently taking place in another state. Reports indicated that the two surviving sisters of a deceased woman are currently at odds over who should take control over the decedent's estate. While the estate is worth more than originally thought, each sister is said to be reporting a different value. As a result, the estate administration has not yet moved forward.

One sister is reporting that the estate is worth $656,000. She hopes to administer the estate of her late sister. However, the other sister also hopes to be appointed the administrator of the estate, and she believes the value totals $550,000. She also believes that she should receive half of the estate. Other individuals close to the deceased indicated that the dispute came as a shock because they did not believe the woman's estate was worth much. 

Sendak estate involved in will dispute

Many individuals know that the wording of legal documents can play a significant part in how those documents are interpreted. In some cases, there may be issues if involved parties believe that a document has different intents. When it comes to estate plans, a will dispute could arise if individuals believe that a document has different meanings.

Maryland residents may be interested in a recent decision made regarding a will dispute involving the estate of children's writer and illustrator Maurice Sendak. Reports stated that the Rosenbach Museum and Library had entered a dispute with Sendak's estate over books that were to be donated to the museum. Sendak's will apparently stated that the establishment was to receive "rare edition books," and the conflict came about after the library stated it did not receive all of the bequeathed books.

Maryland residents may wish to go beyond estate planning basics

Many individuals may consider a will the only document necessary for an estate plan. However, thorough estate planning could do more than designate beneficiaries for assets. By creating additional legal documents, Maryland residents could ensure that they specify their wishes related to finances, medical treatment and other personal issues in the event of incapacitation. 

When an individual becomes incapacitated, it is likely that he or she will be unable to make decisions for him or herself. Therefore, planning ahead for such an event could prevent an undesired individual being named as a power of attorney agent. By creating a power of attorney document, individuals can name the party or parties they see fit to make financial and/or medical decisions in the event that those individuals lose the ability to do so.

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.