Latest Posts

Benefits of Hiring a California Probate Attorney

California Probate CourtA California probate attorney is necessary when establishing a last will and testament or when settling a probated estate. California has strict probate laws that most residents of the Golden State find confusing. Estate administrators can rarely settle estates without legal counsel.

Hiring a California probate attorney can help individuals ensure estate assets are properly protected and ease estate settlement burdens for personal representatives. Probate lawyers assist individuals with executing a last will and testament; establish healthcare proxies; assign power of attorney rights; and assist with estate management duties.

In the state of California, probate laws require decedent Wills to be validated through the court. Afterward, the designated personal representative receives court confirmation to act as the estate’s fiduciary.

The probate process is prolonged when a person dies without leaving directives via a legal Will. The decedent’s death certificate is filed and a personal representative is appointed through the court. Personal representatives are usually the surviving spouse, parents, or adult children, but can also be a neutral third party such as an estate planner or probate attorney.

California probate laws prohibit anyone from engaging in estate settlement duties without receiving court confirmation. Anyone who engages in this behavior can be held liable for their actions and could face a jail sentence.

Probate lawyers can be helpful when family disputes over inheritance arise. Attorneys tend to be more successful at stopping family feuds from erupting and can act as a mediator to prevent heirs from contesting the Will. If heirs do contest the last Will it will be necessary to hire a lawyer to defend the estate and protect inheritance property.

One of the most common reasons Wills are contested is when a relative has been disinherited. While no one wants to eliminate family members from their Will there are times when the person has disassociated with the family or engaged in behavior that does not warrant being rewarded with inheritance gifts.

Golden State residents who want to disinherit direct lineage heirs should consult with a Long Beach will and probate attorney to ensure they comply with state laws. Otherwise, heirs can suspend the estate in probate for months and cost the estate large sums of money in depreciation of asset value and attorney fees.

When family dynamics are solid chances of fights over inheritance property are minimal. However, if family dysfunction currently exist chances are problems will escalate when a family member dies.

California exempts estates from probate when valued below $50,000. To avoid probate, individuals must execute a last will and testament. Once the Will is filed through court, the personal representative secures estate assets to comply with the mandatory 45-day waiting period. Afterward, the representative appears in court to provide evidence of estate settlement procedures. Upon approval from the judge, inheritance property is distributed to designated heirs and beneficiaries.

Upon distribution of inheritance property, beneficiaries sign an affidavit acknowledging they received intended gifts. The personal representative provides affidavits to the court for validation. Upon validation, the estate is closed and the probate personal representative is released from estate management duties.

Child Custody Information: Important Terms to Know

mother and father fighting for custody of sonChild custody is a completely new arena for most divorced parents. They aren’t familiar with the proceedings, the expectations, or anything else that goes along with child custody. Because of this, divorced parents should always be looking for information that can help them.

One of the first things a parent has to learn in child custody are the terms and the vocabulary. There are many phrases used in custody that a parent has to know about and comprehend. To help those who are just starting out in custody, here are some of the frequently used words and phrases and their meanings.

“Family law is a specialized form of law in which it is always best to have an expert on your side, especially when children are involved.” Pintar Albiston – child custody attorney in Las Vegas, NV

1. Custody agreement or parenting plan

This is the document that parents create that outlines their parenting arrangement. In the agreement you have the type of custody the parents have and the schedule of custody and visitation. There is also a schedule of the holidays and where the children will spend them. There will also be child support information and any other provisions that are important to the parents.

2. Physical and legal joint custody

Joint custody is when the parents share responsibilities and duties regarding their children. Legal custody is sharing the big decisions and physical custody is sharing the duty of providing a home and spending time with the children. The alternative is sole custody–where one parent has the majority of responsibility over the children and the other parent has less responsibility.

3. Child custody forms and filing for child custody.

You fill out papers concerning child custody and then you file them with the court–the same court where you file for divorce. You have to fill out papers to get the custody case started and so a judge will decide on your case.

4. Custody mediation.

Divorced parents sometimes use mediation to help them resolve their custody disputes. In mediation the parents meet with a third party and come up with their parenting plan. Then they can give the plan to the court.

5. Custody court and custody order.

This is also called family court. This is where you file your custody papers and also where your custody agreement becomes a court order. The judge will adopt the agreement (if both parents agree) into a legal document. If the parents don’t agree on a plan, they present their cases before the judge and then the judge determines the custody order.

Knowing the common terms and words in custody is a good start for a divorced parent. This is a foundation for figuring out everything that you have to get done. Once you know what everything means you can move on to creating your agreement and getting it through the courts.

3 Alternative Solutions to a Miami Foreclosure

Foreclosure in Miami FL

Facing the potential loss of your home can be overwhelming. This is something that can create lots of stress in your life and the possibility of a foreclosure is inevitable to cause you anxiety. However, you may have other alternatives that can be financially helpful in a difficult time. Just because you can’t make the current mortgage payment doesn’t mean that you have to lose your home. It’s ideal to consult with a Miami foreclosure lawyer that will provide you with legal advice that you may find extremely useful at this time.

Solution #1: Refinance

If you have a positive track record with your lender and a good credit rating, you may be capable of refinancing your home. This can potentially allow your monthly mortgage payments to decrease if you can be guaranteed a lower interest rate than what you currently have.

Mortgage refinancing can be complicated, and you’ll want to know this in advance. In order for you to have been successful in your goal of lowering your monthly mortgage payment, your Miami foreclosure lawyer will recommend that you meet the requirements below:

  1. You have built up some equity in your home, and most lenders suggest this is at least 5%.
  2. You should have an excellent credit history and a high credit score.
  3. You will need to fill out a loan application even if you’re only refinancing.
  4. In many states, you will need to have a professional appraisal of your property.

Solution #2: Bankruptcy

Your foreclosure defense attorney in Miami may recommend that you file for bankruptcy instead of getting into a foreclosure situation. Keep in mind that you will have to meet many requirements and one of these includes passing the means test. This will indicate to all of your lenders that your income is less than your expenses.

However, keep in mind that being successful in filing for bankruptcy will cause your credit score to drop significantly and this can take years to rebuild. Many homeowners that are faced with a challenging time still feel that this may be the ideal solution when house payments simply can’t be made any longer.

Solution #3: Rent

You may be able to find a much cheaper place to live and hold on to your house. This may seem complicated, but it’s not. Simply find a tenant to rent your home and this will all you all of your mortgage payments to be made for you.

Being a landlord for a specific amount of time can prevent you from receiving a letter of default from you lender when you have missed a payment or more. Just be sure to have a rental contract in place to protect your best interests at all times.

You don’t have to give up your home and all that you’ve spent your life working towards having. Take the time to look at other alternatives and meet with a Miami, FL foreclosure lawyer to help you make the right choice today!

Things to Consider Before Hiring a Family Lawyer

A family lawyer is a professional who represents his/her clients in matters related to family disputes. Family disputes usually range from child custody, separation, and divorce as well as property issues. A good family lawyer is usually skilled and highly experienced in handling family issues as he/she has a great understanding of the family law.

If you are facing some family problems which you and your family members or partner can’t seem to solve amicably, it’s advisable to hire a qualified family lawyer. In this case, you will want to hire the best lawyer in town to get the best possible representation in court.

Check out some of the things to consider before hiring a family lawyer.

Tips to Check when Hiring a Family Lawyer

Lawyer’s Level of Experience

Just like any other profession, the experience is crucial in the law field. A family lawyer who has only been in the industry for a few months may not have a good experience in handling family cases. On the other hand, a lawyer with more than 10 years experience is worth his salt. He has gained a lot of experience along the way and is typically familiar with cases similar to yours.

Only hire a family lawyer who has at least 3 years experience.

Area of Specialization

Does the lawyer practice exclusively in family law or is it one of his many practice areas? Well, the lawyer’s area of specialization is an important consideration when looking to hire one to represent you. This is because, in most firms, you’ll find many lawyers offering a wide range of legal services, with family law included.

Hire a lawyer who specifically specializes in family law, nothing else. This will ensure that he gives his best shot and more attention to your case.

Educational Qualifications

Most people often overlook the education qualifications of a lawyer when hiring, only to find out later that they never actually graduated from law school. Of course, such lawyers are incompetent and have fewer skills compared to those who possess education qualifications.

In this case, it’s important to hire a family lawyer who has all the necessary education certifications. The lawyer must be accredited by the American Board of Certification and also meet substantial requirements in the American Bar Association. Only a hire lawyer from a reputable firm to avoid falling into the hands of crooks.

Licensing

To ensure that you’re dealing with a legal professional, check to ensure that the lawyer has the necessary licensing certifications.

Consider Checking the References

One way to hire a qualified and skilled family lawyer is to ask him/her for references. These are previous clients whom he has represented successfully in the past. By checking out his references, you’ll be assured of success in your case.

Legal Fees

Before hiring a family lawyer, get a quote on the overall cost of your particular family case. Different family lawyers charge different hourly rates. You wouldn’t want to be surprised with inflated hourly rates after signing the contract.

Do your research to get the cheapest possible fee while keeping in mind the skills and qualifications of the lawyer. The fee should be reasonable depending on your situation- whether it’s a divorce case or child custody.

Confidentiality

During your consultation with the lawyer, you will be required, be honest, and disclose sensitive information about your family issues. Providing as much information as possible to the lawyer will help him/her when performing research on your case. However, if you the lawyer cannot keep the information private and confidential, this might breach your agreement with him.

Because not all lawyers are trustworthy, make sure that you hire the best. In this case, consider getting recommendations from friends, family, and colleagues. A good lawyer will keep each single detail about your case private and secure.

Good Communication

A good lawyer must have excellent communication skills to allow him/her discuss family law issues with his clients. He/she must answer every question you have and also discuss the procedure of the case.

Lawyer Availability

If the lawyer has other clients lined up, then he may not be able to devote his time to your family case fully. Consider hiring one whose hands are not full.

The thought of hiring a family lawyer can be a little bit overwhelming and intimidating, especially when there is pressure resulting from the family disputes. Hiring a good lawyer will ensure the best possible outcome for your family issues.