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Probate and Estate Litigation Blog

April 2017 Archives

Trusts can potentially prevent disputes between loved ones

Parents in Minnesota may not wish to leave equal inheritances to their children, because of their unequal income and resources and their different need for the inheritance. They may also have different expenses such as an upcoming college education for their children or have expenses associated with a child with a disability. A parent may want to completely or partially disinherit one of his or her family members.

Understanding undue influence

Many times, family members do not know the content of a will until the person passes away. Although no one wants to consider that someone could exploit a loved one, it happens. If the will-maker was exploited or taken advantage of in estate planning, the relatives who suspect this can go to probate court to show undue influence. If the judge agrees, the will could be invalid. 

When shouldn't one make an outright gift to a loved one?

Many accounts allow the transfer of some property or inheritances to family members and others in Minnesota without undergoing probate, such as jointly-owned accounts and real estate, retirement accounts and life insurance policies and transfer on death or in trust for accounts. These are usually transferred outright to beneficiaries upon the presentation of a death certificate. A living trust may also be created that becomes effective immediately upon execution

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