Probate Law

What are the Spousal Rights to Property After Death?

Here are the facts of the situation.  Husband and wife are each on their second marriage and they purchase a home together. Husband dies and leaves a will leaving everything to his grown kids – who by the way don’t like his second wife. The second wife is very nervous about her situation and has a…

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Probate 101: The Basics of the Probate Process

After a person passes away, his or her estate and all its components must be accounted for and distributed among heirs, inheritors and creditors according to a special court process known as probate. The probate process heavily relies on the executor—the person the deceased put in charge of protecting his or her property as outlined…

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5 Tips for Drafting Your Last Will and Testament

No one wants to think about dying or what will happen with the rest of the family after passing away. However, it’s very important to have a plan of action in place when it comes to the distribution of your estate and assets. That’s where having a will comes in handy. Your last will and…

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Common Law Marriage in Texas Probate Courts

Several times over the years, I have probated estates in which the “significant other” to the decedent came forth stating that she (for some reason, every time I had a case like this the deceased was a man) was the common law wife of the decedent and that she, therefore, had a right to half…

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“Letters”: How to Get Letters of Testamentary

I often get frustrated clients that come to me with a story that goes something like this: “My father died and I am his only child. He has a bank account and a stock brokerage account. His Will leaves everything to me and I even gave the financial institutions a copy, but they won’t turnover…

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It May Be Time to Undo Your Will

If you had a Will prepared by an attorney who did estate and tax planning in the 80’s, 90’s or early aughts, it probably had provisions to avoid estate taxes. This was a great idea at the time because for most of that period the maximum estate tax rate hovered around 50%. Simply put if…

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What Does a Civil Lawyer Do?

By Don R. White, Attorney at Law A civil lawyer practices in the field of civil law, which may consist of corporate, family, business, real estate, probate or personal injury law. The cases a civil lawyer deals with all generally regard disagreements between two parties. When a disagreement can’t be settled between the two parties,…

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Why Choose a Board Certified Lawyer?

Choosing the right lawyer for your legal matters can become a little daunting when everyone claims to be the best. However, by picking a Board Certified lawyer, you are choosing a highly esteemed and skilled professional in his or her particular field of law practice. What Does Board Certified Mean? Attorneys who are Board Certified…

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Probate Questions in Texas

 By Byron R. Berry 1. How do I get started? Find the Last Will and Testament of the deceased.  If you have made an exhaustive search and cannot find the Will, a copy will do.  Take the document to your attorney, assuming your attorney does probate work, and decide if a probate proceeding is necessary.…

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How to Choose a Lawyer

Choosing Your Attorney Attorneys are the people you call when you need a problem solved. Law firms vary greatly and it is important to find the attorney best equipped to resolve your issues efficiently and effectively. Here are some factors to consider when wondering how to choose a lawyer: Experience in the Practice Area Many…

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