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Probate and Estate Litigation Blog

March 2012 Archives

Warning for Minnesotans: watch out for financial abuse of elders

Recently, Minnesota's Commerce Commissioner urged the families of senior citizens to use tax time as an opportunity to look for signs of financial abuse, and a recent insurance industry study may give Twin Cities residents extra cause for concern over the estate of a senior loved one. The study concluded that as many as 60 percent of cases reporting financial exploitation of vulnerable adults involved coercion or undue influence by a grown-up child.

Economic hardship and second families can complicate inheritances

Saint Paul residents who expect to receive an inheritance may want to consider some distinctly modern issues that can lead to the dwindling of an estate. For example, Americans are living longer today than they did years ago. Today there are more Americans over the age of 65 than ever before, and it is expected that the over-65 population will grow from 13 to 20 percent of the nation's total population by 2050.

Godfather of Rap estate dispute a cautionary tale for Minnesotans

Twin Cities jazz and rap fans may be dismayed to learn of shady dealings in the estate of Gil Scott-Heron, who died in May 2011 at the age of 62. The man who penned "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" would undoubtedly cringe to know that his recent Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award comes in the shadow of an unseemly family dispute.

Ancient trust sparks probate litigation

Twin Cities residents with an affinity for history may take interest in the controversy now surrounding a will executed more than 100 years before the American colonies declared independence. An affluent businessman named William Payne drafted his will just eight days before his death 351 years ago.

Guardian takes advantage of elderly aunt, commits fraud

For families and friends of the elderly in Minnesota, it is important to stay vigilant and aware of what is going on in their lives. Even if people appear to have the best intentions, each week a new story details another case of financial exploitation or undue influence of vulnerable adults. As one recent story highlights, those who are granted guardianship of an elderly relative can sometimes take advantage of the situation for their own benefit, harming others in the process.

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