I recently had someone ask me at an event about executing a will. Specifically, what happens when someone needs to sign a will, but they have a disability (like blindness) that prevents signing? There are a few considerations. §251.051 of Texas Estates Code is a good place to start: “Except as otherwise provided by law, a last will and testament must be: in writing; signed by: the testator in person;

These days, protecting your information is more important than ever. Clients are often worried about the private information contained in a will becoming public knowledge when they go through probate. There are usually two areas for concern. The will itself. When a will is probated, the will is entered in its entirety into the court record and often times, into the deed records of the county for property transfers. That information is very pubic.

Payment on Death Beneficiary Accounts, also known as P.O.D. accounts, have been gaining in popularity over the last several years. A P.O.D. account designation is a contract between you and your financial institutions that upon your death, the financial institution agrees to pay whatever money is in the account at the time of your death to your listed beneficiaries. It acts the same way a life insurance policy does. It

Many people want to be in charge of their loved one’s Estate because it comes with a lot of power and authority, and they believe they are the best ones to carry out their loved one’s wishes. While that may be the case, the State of Texas has some reservations who qualifies as the best choice for the Executor or Administrator.   Section 304.003 of the Texas Estates Code states

Many people come into our office and are adamant that they need a trust. They aren’t sure what kind of trust, or what exactly a trust does, but they know they need one. More and more, I find myself explaining to them that they don’t really need a trust. Often, they will spend more money and more time in upkeep of a trust over the years than it’s really worth.

What’s the difference between a Warranty Deed and a Quitclaim? I’ve also heard clients incorrectly call it a ‘Quickclaim Deed”. The main difference between the two types of deeds is what the seller guaranteeing, and what protection the buyer is receiving.   A Warranty Deed contains a clause in the Deed that effectively warrants, or guarantees, that the Seller owns the land that they are selling. If it turns out

Have you been putting off getting a Will because you say the kids can fight about it when you’re gone? Or, you don’t want to pay for something that you won’t be around to use yourself?   Here’s a quick breakdown of the costs of Probate with a Will versus without a Will.   If you have a Will, Your property goes to your named beneficiaries, and does not have

A lot of things end at the time of divorce, not just a marriage.   If you’ve been smart and had an estate plan prepared while you’re married, you now need to be proactive again. Upon divorce, many documents cease to have their same effect. That can often be a good thing, but it can leave holes in your estate plan if you’re not aware of the changes.   For

I get asked by clients, bank employees, and beneficiaries all the time “what’s the difference between an Executor and Administrator?” Some are a little bit more adventurous and ask what an Administrator with the Will Annexed is.” So below is a quick breakdown of the different types of people in charge of an estate.   When a person passes away, all their assets belong to their estate. Regardless of the

Besides the pride of owning your own home…along with the taxes, homeowner’s insurance, paying for your own repairs, mowing your lawn…you also get certain protections and benefits that aren’t given to renters. Most, though not all, of these protections and benefits are only available if you have filed a Homestead Designation with your local county appraisal district office. Once you’ve filed the Homestead Designation, then you’re entitled to a homestead