Recent Blog Posts

Why a Trust is Better Than a Will

 Posted on June 19, 2023 in Estate Planning

Fort Worth, TX Will and Trust AttorneysEstate planning involves complex terminology and legal procedures. Trusts and wills are important for distributing assets after death. Though both serve the same purpose, trusts offer more advantages, especially under Texas law.

Trusts vs. Wills

A will is a legal document instructing how your property should be distributed after death. An executor is responsible for submitting it to the probate court. On the other hand, a trust is a legal entity that holds your property and distributes it according to your instructions. Trusts can be made either during your lifetime (living) or by a provision in your will (testamentary) and managed by a trustee.

Why Trusts Outshine Wills

There are several reasons why trusts often prove to be more beneficial than wills:

Avoidance of Probate

If you include your property in a trust in Texas, your heirs can avoid the probate process completely. This can save them time and money since they won't have to wait for approval from the probate court to inherit the property. Additionally, unlike probate court proceedings, transferring assets through a trust can offer more privacy as they are not a matter of public record.

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How Can I Help Prepare My Loved Ones for My Passing?

 Posted on June 08, 2023 in Estate Planning

Fort Worth, TX Lawyers Helping with Estate PlansThinking about our own mortality is understandably something most of us would rather avoid. However, one of the best ways you can lessen the burden of your passing on your loved ones is to prepare them for it. This can involve having conversations about long-term care, end-of-life planning, estate plans, and your final wishes.

Help Your Loved Ones By Being Organized

Having important documents organized and in one place (such as a will, medical directives, and insurance policies) can make the process of settling your affairs much easier. You can also help your loved ones by writing down a list of important contacts for them to have on hand in case of an emergency. This can include your attorney, financial or tax advisors, insurance agents, and healthcare providers.

Be Open & Honest About Your Wishes

It’s important to be open and honest with your loved ones about your wishes for end-of-life care. Not only will this help make the process easier for them, but it will also provide them with a greater understanding of your wishes and values. Discussing things like funeral arrangements, memorial services, and other matters of personal preference can help provide closure for your loved ones.

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Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship: Evaluating the Benefits and Limitations

 Posted on May 19, 2023 in Estate Planning

Fort Worth, TX Estate Planning LawyersA joint tenancy with right of survivorship is a legal arrangement in which two or more people own an asset together. Married couples often set up joint tenancy for their homes, bank accounts, and other high-value assets. Family members or business partners may also set up a joint tenancy together. This arrangement allows for the smooth transition of ownership rights upon one of the owner’s deaths. However, this arrangement also has its limitations. Read on to learn more.

Advantages of Setting up a Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship

Establishing a joint tenancy with right of survivorship (JTWROS) can be a great way to lessen the complexity and stress associated with asset transfers upon a person’s death. 

In a JTWROS, two people (tenants) co-own property together. When one of the owners dies, his or her ownership stake passes to the surviving co-owner. The surviving owner essentially inherits the deceased person’s share without it being specified in the deceased person’s will.

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Revocable Living Trust or Irrevocable Living Trust: Which is Right for Me?

 Posted on May 08, 2023 in Estate Planning

Fort Worth, TX Attorney Handling Revocable and Irrevocable Trust ServicesAs the name implies, a living trust is a trust established during a person's lifetime. The person who creates a trust is called the grantor. He or she transfers assets such as personal property, business assets, real estate, insurance policies, and bank accounts to the trust.

The grantor assigns a trustee to control the trust assets and distribute the assets to the beneficiaries upon the grantor’s death. The grantor may also serve as the trustee of a trust and assign a successor trustee to take over if he or she passes away.  

Living trusts are often used to transfer assets to beneficiaries without probate, which can be costly and time-consuming. However, this is just one of the many different advantages associated with a living trust.

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What Can and Cannot Be Included in a Will?

 Posted on April 26, 2023 in Estate Planning

Fort Worth, Texas Estate Planning LawyersAs you explore your estate planning options, it is important to understand the advantages and limitations of various estate planning tools. You have so many different options at your disposal for asset distribution and incapacity planning, and it can sometimes be difficult to understand the purpose that each tool serves. In this blog, we will discuss what a last will and testament can accomplish as well as purposes for which a will is insufficient.

Texas Last Will and Testament

A will is considered the most fundamental aspect of an estate plan. For some people, a will may be enough to satisfy all of their estate planning needs. The main purpose of a will is to explain how your worldly possessions should be distributed to beneficiaries after your death. Who should take ownership of your home? Who should receive important family heirlooms such as jewelry? Your will gives you the opportunity to describe exactly how your property should be distributed. Without a will, your property will be distributed based on Texas law, which may not reflect your wishes.

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Reduce the Risk of Partnership Disputes By Following These Tips

 Posted on April 17, 2023 in Business Formation

Tarrant County, TX Partnership Agreements LawyersAs the old saying goes: two heads are better than one. This is just one of the reasons that business partnerships are often an effective means of building a successful company. Partnerships offer a range of benefits, from having access to additional knowledge and skills to splitting responsibilities. Unfortunately, business partnerships can also lead to substantial conflict. When partners do not see eye to eye regarding the business, serious disputes that threaten the stability of the company can arise.

There is no way to guarantee that a business partnership will be free of any conflict or disagreements. However, partners can take certain steps to reduce the chances of a partnership dispute.

Start With a Detailed Partnership Agreement

For many entrepreneurs and hopeful business owners, the excitement of starting a new partnership may overshadow some of the more practical steps involved with creating a partnership. Although it may seem tedious and sometimes uncomfortable, building a detailed partnership agreement is one of the best things you can do to avoid conflict. Do not assume that you and the other partners will simply work out the details as you go along. This strategy almost never works. 

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Incapacitation Planning Using a Living Will

 Posted on March 28, 2023 in Estate Planning

Tarrant County, TX Estate Planning LawyersAs with many estate planning topics, incapacitation planning is not the most pleasant topic in the world to consider. However, it is a topic that should not be overlooked. Incapacitation planning is the process of planning for the possibility of severe illness or injury.

Have you ever thought about whether you would want to be kept alive by a ventilator if you fell into a persistent vegetative state? Do you consent to undergo dialysis if you require it? What are your personal beliefs about organ donation and palliative care? These are extremely important questions and that are deeply personal. A living will allows you to make decisions about these crucial matters ahead of time. This ensures that your loved ones as well as your doctors understand the types of medical care you wish to receive if you are ever too sick to explain your wishes.

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The Mediation Process for Breach of Contract Disputes

 Posted on March 09, 2023 in Business Formation

Fort Worth, TX Business Breach of Contract AttorneyBusiness contracts are the backbone of a successful business. When two parties agree to enter into a contract, they are legally bound by its terms and conditions. If one of the parties fails to fulfill their obligations as stated in the contract, this is considered a breach of contract. Breach of contract disputes may involve non-compete agreements, nondisclosure agreements, licensing contracts, partnership agreements, or other types of agreements.

When faced with a breach of contract issues, many businesses use mediation to resolve the dispute. Mediation involves a neutral third party (the mediator) who helps the parties reach an agreement. The goal of mediation is to find a mutually agreeable solution that satisfies both parties and prevents them from having to go through lengthy and costly litigation in court.

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Business Branding 101: Registering Your Business Name to Comply with the Law

 Posted on February 28, 2023 in Business Formation

Fort Worth, TX Business Law AttorneyBecoming a business owner is an overwhelming prospect, especially when it comes time to acquainting yourself with the myriad of business laws for which you will be held accountable as you commence your new role. Branding in particular will be an imperative foundation for your marketing efforts, and it all begins with one critical task: selecting a business name.

Doing Business As (DBA)

Whether you are an existing owner looking to start another side business or are embarking on a brand-new business venture for the first time, it is important to be aware of the requirement to legally register your business name with the proper authorities to ensure you remain compliant with the law. Filing your “Doing Business As” name (also called your DBA) is the process of officially registering your chosen business name. This name must be different from your real, personal name and will be required on a number of government forms and applications, such as your employer tax ID application and license paperwork.

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Leaving an Inheritance to a Paid Caregiver in Texas

 Posted on February 14, 2023 in Estate Planning

Fort Worth, TX Estate Planning Lawyer for Caregiver BeneficiariesIf you rely on a paid caregiver to help you with daily activities, such as dressing and bathing, there is a good chance that you will develop a strong relationship with the person who cares for you, even if they are not a part of your family. Over the course of months and years, the relationship you have with your caregiver may actually become even closer than the relationships you have with your blood-related family members. With this in mind, you may want to include considerations for your caregiver in your estate plan.

Under Texas law, you have the right to choose anyone you wish as beneficiary in a will or trust, including a non-family caregiver. However, there are some concerns that should be taken into account before making this decision. An experienced estate planning lawyer can help you understand some of these concerns and how to keep them from becoming problems down the road.

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