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Understanding how guardianships work in Florida

As a resident of Florida who is considering establishing a guardianship over someone else, you may have questions about the process, your responsibilities and related matters.

Maybe you have a minor child in your life, and he or she is inheriting a considerable amount of money and needs someone to oversee the funds. Conversely, perhaps your mother or father is grappling with memory loss or a similar condition that prevents him or her from handling his or her own affairs, and you want to step in and take care of things.

Important factors of a power of attorney

You want to protect your assets, even when you are gone. Thankfully, estate plans are helpful tools for parties to use to designate specific assets and their distribution.

Consider a few essential elements to orchestrate the proper care of your estate, such as the power of attorney. When picking your power of attorney, you should keep in mind a few important things:

4 times when contesting a will probably makes sense

Few family arguments have the potential to explode faster than a discussion about dividing property after a loved one dies. If your family is fortunate, your elderly parent executed a well-written will before death. Still, wills do not always completely resolve family disputes. 

In Florida, probate judges rely on wills to reduce uncertainty and boost efficiency. With a good will, your parent tells you, your siblings and the state how he or she wishes to dispose of personal property, real estate, investments and other items. Of course, not all wills are good.

Personal Reps of an estate: How to defend against a will contest

If you are the personal representative or executor of an estate, you may encounter some obstacles as you assume your role and fulfill your duties. Beneficiaries of the estate may start to doubt the validity of the will, question your authority or squabble amongst one another.

It is vital to be ready for a will contest because estate disputes are always possible. 

Prepare for collection calls when a loved one dies


It is an unfortunate reality that many people these days end up dying with debt. One report published by TIME Magazine found that approximately 73 percent of Americans die with some amount of debt. The average debt a person dies with is over $61,000, which typically comes from someone's mortgage debt. However, it can also come from student loans, auto loans and credit card debt. 

It is a difficult time when a loved one passes away. There will be a lot on your mind, and the last thing you want to deal with is creditors calling you asking about the deceased's debt. While it can be angering to receive these calls, it is important to be ready. You certainly have rights when creditors call, and you should not pay any money you do not have to. 

3 things you should know about second marriages and wills


Entering into a second marriage is becoming more common in the United States. Whether a second marriage is the result of the death of a spouse or divorce, the rates are on the rise. When it comes to matters of estate planning, things may get tricky when remarriage occurs.

When contemplating tying the knot again, it is critical that you consider what your estate will look like for your spouse and heirs. Subsequent marriages require keen estate planning to keep successors straight during probate. 

Hiding assets in a divorce can have long-term consequences


Couples facing a high-net-worth divorce are already looking at a process that is likely to be long, complex and, perhaps, very public. If one spouse is hiding assets, the risks will outweigh the benefits, and the unintended consequences could stretch far into the future.

More financially sophisticated

Family inheritance talks make some millionaires nervous


Sooner or later the subject of inheritance comes up in wealthy families. Parents become concerned about how inheriting large sums of money affect their children. A sit-down family discussion is not always the best way forward, and some wealthy parents get the point across to their children using more creative means.

An uncomfortable chat

3 common executor mistakes


When your loved one or close confidante entrusts you with taking care of his or her affairs after passing on, you have a serious responsibility on your hands that requires careful consideration and attention to detail. Taking on the role of executor over someone's estate means that you agree to handle certain critical tasks, and making mistakes in your role as executor can have major consequences.

Because so many executors make similar errors, recognizing some common executor mistakes can help you avoid making them yourself. So, what types of errors are today's executors making?

Review this checklist before signing a business contract


The contract is one of the most important building blocks of a successful business. It is a part of almost all business relationships, so undoubtedly you will be signing many as you grow your company.

Because contracts are so standard, or maybe simply because you are inexperienced, you may not put as much effort as you should into reviewing them before signing. Not being thorough can land you in trouble should you or the other party breach the terms of the agreement due to lack of understanding.

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