Some assets do not require probate court in order to pass to a living person. They can be passed directly to the beneficiary, with no probate order needed. Examples of non-probate assets Life insurance, retirement accounts, brokerage accounts. If you have these types of a accounts and have properly designated a beneficiary, that person should be able to get that money distributed directly … [Read more...] about Non-Probate Assets
There are a lot of factors to consider in whether or not it is worth it to file a probate case. A cost analysis should be part of the decision. Who Can File Probate? In order to file a legal case, you have to have "standing". Simply put, legal standing means that you have a right to file the case, and it affects you in some way. For example, here is a general list: You are a … [Read more...] about Is it Worth it to File in Probate Court?
Well, storm season is here again. What is the best way to protect your important legal documents from damage or loss? Hard Copy of Documents We recommend that clients keep their important, original documents in a waterproof safe or waterproof box in their home, in a spot that is unlikely to flood (second floor, a high shelf). A safe deposit box is okay if that makes you more … [Read more...] about Hurricane Preparedness: What to do About Your Important Legal Documents
If you are thinking of filing for divorce, one of the things that you may be worried about is your spouse being served with the papers. The "how" and "when" of the service can be a real worry. There are different ways that your spouse can get the papers: It can be done by certified mail.It can be done with a process server.It can be done by a constable. You can give the papers to your … [Read more...] about Serving Your Spouse With Divorce Papers
If you were making a list called "Words That Everyone Uses but not Everyone Understands", the word "trust" would be on that list. Most people have a general idea of what a trust is, but not everyone understands when they should consider having one. Isn't a Trust Just for Rich People? No, it isn't! There are situations in which "regular people" benefit from having a Texas trust! In … [Read more...] about What is a Trust and What are its Benefits?
It is important to understand how legal services and fees are billed. Although the invoices may vary from law firm to law firm, here is some general information that can help you understand your legal invoice. How do "services" differ from "costs"? When you pay for legal services, you are paying for the time that your attorney and staff spend on your case. Each person who is billing for … [Read more...] about Understanding Your Legal Invoice
About to file your income taxes? Review your court orders to see who gets to claim your child as a dependent. Where do I find this information? You can find this information in the Final Court Decree in your case. By the "final" decree, I mean the last order that the judge signed when your case was finished. The final decree may be called "Final Decree of Divorce". It can titled "Order in … [Read more...] about Who Gets to Claim My Minor Child as a Tax Deduction?
During partial and complete shutdowns, it is often difficult to know what is going on at any particular time. Be aware that if you need a restraining order or protective order in Texas, you can still file to request one from the court. How the courts are operating varies by Texas county, and also by the particular court. But, rest assured, there are provisions in place to deal with … [Read more...] about Even if the Courts Are Closed You Can Still File for a Protective Order