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Important Breaking Information On How The Coronavirus Is Affecting The Workplace

This is a very uncertain time for employers in Texas. One of the key issues employers are facing is how to pay employees who cannot work because they have the coronavirus, have to self-quarantine, have been ordered to shelter in place, or have children at home because school and daycare have been suspended. Guidance on these issues is coming forth daily. 

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Why You Need A Living Will And Medical Power Of Attorney

If you have ever gone through a hospital admissions process, you’ve likely been asked if you have a living will (also known as a directive to physicians) and a medical power of attorney.

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Starting A Business? Find Out Which Entity Type Is Best For You

If you are considering starting a small business, you're most likely trying to sort out the different types of businesses and trying to decide which type is best for you. Each type might be better for a specific purpose or situation, relating to taxes, liability, and your ability to control the profits and losses of the business. Sorting out the terminology can be tricky. This run-down will help navigate the choices you have.
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Slick Trick In Texas To Transfer Real Estate Without Probate

Texas law allows a slick trick to transfer title to real estate you own on your death without probate. For many people, their residence or other real estate comprises the biggest part of an estate that normally would require probate to pass title. Texas law has recognized an estate planning trick that is extremely effective and low cost, called a deed with an enhanced retained life estate or “Lady Bird” deed. This tool can be used for all types of real estate interests. If you have drawn up this deed to real property prior to your death, you might be able to avoid probate entirely, if the rest of your assets have been designated with beneficiary or payable on death arrangements.

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How Much Does It Cost To Set Up A Trust?

 

People will frequently hear about setting up a trust as part of an estate plan. Typically, this is a revocable living trust, although some situations call for an irrevocable living trust. A revocable trust is one that can be completely or partially revoked either during the lifetime of the person creating the trust or afterward. An irrevocable trust means just that: it cannot be revoked.

Another form of trust is a testamentary trust. This is one that is set up as part of a will and does not become effective until your death. The trust I will be discussing here is a living trust. If a trust is set up under a will, that fee is included under the will preparation fee. 

Not every person needs a trust. Unfortunately, some "trust salesmen" have held big seminars as they travel through town to try to convince everyone that they need a living trust. 

Generally, unless you have a complex estate, you do not need a living trust to dispose of your estate. A living trust is a good idea if you own real property or mineral interests in another state. Sometimes, also, people prefer to use a living trust rather than a will to keep the terms of their bequests private. A will, if probated, becomes a public record, whereas a trust does not. There are other instances when a living trust is a good idea and instances when it is not.

If you have determined that setting up a trust is a good idea for you, you are most likely wondering how much it will cost you. Unfortunately, the standard lawyer answer is “it depends.”

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Probate Process In Texas Is Not That Scary

The thought of having to do a probate for a deceased loved one is often scary. Although the legal process can appear complicated to a layman, an experienced probate attorney can comfortably guide you through the process. The actual court appearances and steps required of you as a client are very low-key and relaxed unless there is a Will contest. 

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You’re Not Too Young To Start The Estate Planning Process

Tragedies like the recent death of Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter, the other young parents, and some of their children bring home the tragedy of thinking you are too young to do estate planning. Hopefully, these parents had done estate planning to protect the settlement of their estates for the loved ones left behind. So many times, however, that has not happened because the parents didn’t believe they were old enough to think about this. Or, commonly, younger people believe estate planning is too expensive for them to take on at this stage in their lives. Neither of these things are true!

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Should You Consult An Attorney Before Signing A Real Estate Contract

Many people trust that the seller of the property they are buying is being fair, or that their real estate agent is covering all of the bases. Maybe they just don’t want to spend the money to have an attorney review real estate purchase agreements.     


I have seen situations, though, where large escrow deposits are subject to being lost, costs of the sale are not being fairly split, or big issues exist over restrictions on use of the property or what interests are being conveyed in the sale.

Even if you trust the seller or real estate agent, it’s a good idea to meet with an attorney before you sign or draft a contract. Doing so could save you money, stress, and headaches.


The Benefits Of Consulting An Attorney Prior To Signing A Contract

Purchasing a home, farm and ranch, or other real estate can be a scary undertaking for many people. Fortunately, real estate agents these days are very well-trained in guiding purchasers through the steps to drawing up a good, legal contract to purchase a home. 

In most instances, it is not essential to consult an attorney for a routine, simple purchase of a residence. However, even then, the assurance from an attorney that the terms are standard and fair to you may be worth the price you pay for an attorney to review the contract. 

If the terms of purchase of a home are not a typical situation with financing by a standard lending institution, such as purchasing a home with standard mortgage lending, you probably will want to consult an attorney to either help you draft the contract or review one drafted by someone else. The terms for key elements of the purchase, such as what all is included in the sale, and who pays for what costs connected with the purchase, can vary widely. You need someone protecting your interests in the deal.

For the purchase of a farm and ranch or other real estate, again, the terms can vary so widely that most buyers will want to have expert legal advice. There are questions such as whether mineral interests pass with the purchase of the property or not, restrictions on the use of commercial property, and endless other details that you might not even think of without the assistance of an attorney.

The Cost Now Versus Later

The price you pay for this advice before signing a contract can easily save you many thousands of dollars and lots of headaches and trouble in the future. A review of a standard residential purchase contract generally would not be more than a few hundred dollars. More complicated contracts, of course, would cost more to review or draft, but the cost would still be far less than any negotiation or litigation later to address problems that arise. 

It is easier to find an attorney who will review a contract or help you draft one before you purchase real estate than after the purchase when potential litigation arises. 

Better safe than sorry! 

If you have a contract you are considering signing or you need a contract drawn up, please schedule an appointment with Adair M. Buckner. Adair has helped thousands of clients through the years with the review and drafting of real estate contracts.

Proceeding, where what property belongs to each spouse is clearly set out, so that elaborate tracing of assets can be avoided. 

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Tips To Foreclose On A Real Estate Lien

You are the lender on an owner-financed sale of real estate, carrying the note secured by a lien on the property. The borrower is not complying with the terms of the note. You are now faced with the daunting prospect of foreclosure on your lien. 

The good news is that the lien foreclosure gives you a process to recover some or all of the money still owed you. The bad news is that you are going to have to deal with very complicated, tricky legal foreclosure steps to get there.

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Cost Of A Prenuptial Or Postnuptial Agreement

I have written about how a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement can be an element in an effective financial plan or an estate plan. Many people believe that it is very expensive to have a prenup or postnup drawn up. The expense will depend totally on the situation, and may not be nearly as large as you might think. 

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