Typically, a trust won’t specify how much a trustee should be paid for their effort. And yet, unless wavied by settlor, or specifically established by settlor, successor trustee’s have a right to ‘reasonable compensation’. What is reasonable?… Read More


There are two main purposes of an international trust for U.S. citizens. The first is to combine domestic and offshore assets into a unified estate plan with a common trustee and set of instructions. The second use of interantional trusts is for asset protection.… Read More


Here is a question posed recently on avvo.com.  My answer was chosen as “Best Answer” by the questioner. Question:  How can my parents change their revocable trust without an attorney?  My parents reside in Wisconsin and have a revocable trust with 3 of 8 children designated to administer the trust.  If they wish to delete… Read More


Here is a question posed to me recently, and the answer I provided: Question:  My mom passed away over 30 years ago and I have 1 sister and 1 brother and a half sister. My stepmom all of a sudden is in a hurry to adopt when we have lived with her over 30 years. Is there… Read More


Today’s question and answer came from AVVO.Com.  The person, a single parent of one child, had set up her daughter as the Pay-On-Death beneficiary of her bank accounts.  Now she wanted to figure out a way of transferring her homes to the daughter without making a trust.  My advice to her follows. Q: if a… Read More


Everyone should have an Advance Health Care Directive (AHCD) that designates an agent to act on your behalf if you are unable to make your own health care decisions. The agent can then consent to surgery on your behalf or “pull the plug” or keep you alive if you are in a persistent vegetative state.… Read More


Your California will should NOT be notarized. If it is a formal will it needs to be witnessed by at least two witnesses. Despite the fact that 60% of Americans don’t have a basic will, they are very useful documents!  In addition to dictating where your property is to go when you die, and nominating an… Read More


Question: Dear Sir:  Father did not own any property and did not have a will. Was divorced before death from my mother. Never remarried. My mother believes I was named the executor during the divorce proceedings but I was never notified. My father got very sick soon after the divorce and died. Have one brother… Read More


Working near USMC Camp Pendleton in San Diego County, I sometimes receive questions from military families.  Here’s one I got today: “My daughter has her biological father’s last name, but he isn’t on her birth certificate. He isn’t involved in her life. My husband wants to adopt her but we’re not sure what all we have… Read More