GP Schoemakers Blog

GP Schoemakers Blog2019-04-10T17:20:19+00:00

The Harmonious Family that Won’t Fight?  The Outcome May Surprise You

Most families are happy families. They get together for the holidays, share laughs, and tell stories. Everyone gets along and enjoys each other’s company. Then, the matriarch or patriarch dies. Suddenly, years of pent-up resentment and hurt feelings bubble to the surface, and the once-happy family is now embroiled in litigation over the decedent’s estate. When everyone is alive and happy, it is easy to think that nothing will break a family apart. Many people think that since everyone is getting along, estate planning is not needed because everyone will look out for one another and do what is fair. [...]

By |November 20th, 2020|Categories: ESTATE PLANNING, PROBATE, Wills|0 Comments

Revocable Trust  vs. Irrevocable Trust: Which Is Best for You?

Trusts  allow you to avoid probate, minimize taxes, provide organization, maintain control, and provide for yourself and your heirs. In its most simple terms, a trust is a book of instructions wherein you tell your people what to do, when. While there are many types of trusts, the major distinction between trusts is whether they are revocable or irrevocable. Let’s take a look at both so you’ll have the information you need: Revocable Trusts. Revocable trusts are also known as “living trusts” because they benefit you during your lifetime and you can alter, change, modify, or revoke them if your [...]

By |November 13th, 2020|Categories: ESTATE PLANNING, Trusts|0 Comments

Are Handwritten Intentions Enforceable? Princess Diana Thought So…

Princess Diana of Wales was one of the world’s most loved celebrities – and one of the richest.  Her tragic death in 1997 was world news. The majority of her estate, reportedly worth $40 million at the time of her death, was divided between Prince William and Prince Harry in her estate plan.  However, she also wrote a “letter of wishes” that directed her executors to give a number of personal effects to her godchildren. Those executors, her mother and her sister, went to court and had it ruled unenforceable.  Holographic Wills – Sometimes Enforceable, Sometimes Not Princess Diana’s letter [...]

By |November 5th, 2020|Categories: ESTATE PLANNING, Wills|0 Comments

Probate and Tax Issues

They say nothing is certain except for Death and Taxes. It is no different during Probate! As the Executor / Administrator of an estate, your duty will entail among other things the duty to prepare and file all the tax returns for the Decedent and for the Estate. To help you get started, we will discuss the most common Tax documents that get filed during Probate. 1) The Decedent’s Final Personal Income Tax Return Because taxes are filed in yearly periods (January 1 – December 31), the Final Income Tax for the year of Death of the Decedent will likely [...]

By |October 29th, 2020|Categories: PROBATE|0 Comments

Executor of an Estate in Texas

Executor of an Estate v. Administrator of an Estate In Texas someone is deemed the Executor of and Estate when there is Probate with a Will. If there is no will, but someone is appointed to administrate the Estate, that person will be called the Administrator of the Estate. In general their duties are the same, there might be some small differences, however in most cases, the terms can be used interchangeably. The Executor Duties under Texas Law The main duties that Texas law requires of an Executor / Administrator are: Identify and Collect the assets of the Decedent’s estate; [...]

By |October 22nd, 2020|Categories: PROBATE|0 Comments

What is Probate?

Probate is the legal process during which someone’s estate gets distributed after their death. In Texas, an estate exists out of all the assets that are owned by someone at the time of their death. Thus, an estate may include: cash, real estate, stocks, bonds, life insurance, retirement accounts, cars, etc. Probate distributes a deceased person’s estate via two ways, the first, easiest and fastest way is to probate a Will. Most Wills in Texas are probated without any Will contest, and on average take 180-360 days, it can be longer depending on the complexity of the Estate, and the [...]

By |October 15th, 2020|Categories: PROBATE|0 Comments

When is a Will valid in Texas?

Is my loved-one's will valid? Is one of the most important questions we hear from people. As with all legal questions, the answer is…. IT DEPENDS! Moreover, the validity of a Will depends on the TYPE of Will the Testator made, but before we go into this, here are the main requirements for wills in general to be valid. Legal & Testamentary Capacity & Testamentary Intent of Testator Texas law states for a Will to be valid, the following general requirements are needed (regards to the Testator): the testator/testatrix (person making the Will) to have legal capacity (be at least 18 [...]

By |October 8th, 2020|Categories: ESTATE PLANNING, Wills|0 Comments

Types of Probate in Texas

They say nothing is certain except for Death and Taxes. It is no different during Probate! As the Executor / Administrator of an estate, your duty will entail among other things the duty to prepare and file all the tax returns for the Decedent and for the Estate. To help you get started, we will discuss the most common Tax documents that get filed during Probate. 1) The Decedent’s Final Personal Income Tax Return Because taxes are filed in yearly periods (January 1 – December 31), the Final Income Tax for the year of Death of the Decedent will likely [...]

By |October 1st, 2020|Categories: PROBATE|0 Comments
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