Heirs

A Deed Is Not Title

Probate deals with real property a lot – houses, condos, vacant lots, commercial buildings. Our clients often confuse the word “title” with “deed.” They will refer to a deed when they really mean title, as in “When does probate give me my deed?” One reason for the confusion is that, for motor vehicles, there is… read more

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Why is a Mortgage Not a Debt That the Estate Must Pay?

“How come I still have to pay the mortgage on my parent’s house, that I inherited in probate, when the Last Will states that all debts of the estate are to be paid?” That is a question we get sometimes – and it’s a great question. Why is the mortgage not a debt that the… read more

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When It Comes to Stocks, Stop the Loss

An executor or personal representative of an estate with significant stocks or other marketable securities should always consider entering a stop-loss order. That is a standing order with your broker to sell a security if the price drops to a certain level. A trailing stop-loss order is one that raises that sale price as the… read more

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Only One Father Per Child

Anyone who has adopted a child, or been adopted, probably knows this, but for everyone else, remember this: When it comes to inheritance, you only have one father or one mother. While sometimes we distinguish between a “biological mother” and an “adoptive mother,” when it comes to being an “heir,” there can be only one… read more

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What Does “Per Stirpes” Mean?

In a Last Will, what does “per stirpes” mean? We get that question a lot, as “per stirpes” (pronounced “purr STIR pees”) is a very useful Latin expression for Last Wills. Someone somewhere a long, long time ago started using it as a shortcut expression, and it stuck. We’ll skip the Latin lesson. Over-simplified, it… read more

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An Important Change to Florida Law

Who inherits, and how much, when there is no Last Will? Starting October 1, 2011, step-parents in Florida have even more incentive to have a Last Will. Without a will, the surviving spouse inherits much less of the estate if either of the parents has children by any other relationship. Thankfully, the results below can… read more

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