Can Same Person Be Beneficiary And Sole Trustee of Irrevocable Trust?

Jon Alper Estate Planning

Our client wanted to serve as trustee of an irrevocable trust created for his benefit. The client’s general attorney cautioned him that he could not serve simultaneously as a beneficiary and as a trustee, and that if he did occupy both positions the trust would automatically dissolve because of the legal “doctrine of merger.” The client’s wife proposed to create …

Should I Transfer My Florida Homestead To My Living Trust?

Jon Alper Estate Planning

Clients who prepare living trusts for estate planning frequently will ask me whether they should transfer the legal title of their Florida homestead property to the name of their living trust. If the property is transferred to the trust the successor trustee will transfer or dispose of the property after the death of the trustmaker as directed by terms of …

Can LLC Operating Agreement Transfer Shares Upon Member’s Death?

Jon Alper Estate Planning

An earlier blog post addressed a question about directing ownership of a deceased LLC member’s membership interest . The post said that an LLC operating agreement cannot direct the inheritance of an LLC interest, and that each member should provide for inheritance in their will or living trust. A Florida court decision since that post holds that LLC operating agreements …

Living Trust Homestead Exemption

Gideon Alper Estate Planning, Homestead Exemption

When I am preparing a living trust for estate planning clients I am often asked to advise whether or not it is wise to title homestead properties in the name of the living trust. Trustmaker clients are concerned that conveying their homestead to their living trust may forfeit their Constitutional homestead exemption from creditor judgments. The Florida homestead exemption applies …

Florida Homestead Law in Probate

Gideon Alper Estate Planning

A common question that comes up at initial client meetings for living trust administration or probate concerns the treatment of the decedent’s homestead property. The heirs want to know if they can sell the parents’ homestead and whether a probate proceeding is required to handle the homestead. In most cases, these are families that used living trust planning to avoid …

Asset Protection in Post-Death Living Trust Administration

Jon Alper Estate Planning

Asset protection planning often continues after death, especially when a surviving spouse has judgements or is vulnerable to lawsuit.  The design of your estate planning determines whether your assets will be vulnerable to creditors of your surviving spouse or children. The typical living trust based estate plan for married couples the first spouse to die has left all their assets …

Revocable vs. Irrevocable Trusts in Florida

Gideon Alper Estate Planning

Estate planning clients begin their planning process with the expectation that they will be creating some type of trust for their heirs. Often, clients anticipate conveying their assets in to some form of trust, but they typically do not understand how different types of trust fit in to the estate planning process. Trusts are initially distinguished by whether they are …

Florida Slayer Statute: can Person Responsible For Another’s Death Receive Property or Money On Account Of The Death?

Jon Alper Estate Planning

This question was presented by one of my new clients: Larry and Moe are business partners. There are reciprocal one million dollar life insurance policies naming each other as primary beneficiary and their spouses as contingent beneficiaries. Larry and Moe are feuding about their business. They get into a physical altercation which unfortunately results in Moe shooting Larry to death. …

Lady Bird Deeds For Medicaid and Estate Planning

Jon Alper Estate Planning

The mother and father of one of my asset protection clients wants to give my client (their son) and his wife their homestead property after they decease. The parents are concerned about subjecting their homestead to medicaid claims in the event they both leave the home to reside in a nursing home. They also want to make sure my client’s …