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August 2015 Archives

Robin Williams' children and widow continue battle his assets

Massachusetts fans of Robin Williams may already know that despite what he believed to be a well-constructed estate plan, his widow and his children are still in court. Last year, court documents were filed regarding how the late actor's assets should be classified and therefore divided. Recently, Williams' widow filed documents indicating that she was not receiving enough money from the trust's Reserve Fund to maintain the home he left her.

Changes in marital status may require changes in estate planning

Estate planning is about preparing for the future, and the sooner that Massachusetts adults create and execute a plan, the better off they and their families may be. Once the documents are executed, many people put them in a safe place and forget about them. The only problem is that estate planning does not end when the documents are signed since one of the few constants in life is that things are going to change.

Many assets do not have to go through the probate process

Many Massachusetts residents want to maximize any inheritance left to their loved ones. One way to do this is to limit the number of assets that must go through the probate process before being distributed to heirs and beneficiaries. It may still be necessary to file a probate petition and the will, but with proper estate planning, it does not have to be a time-consuming and expensive process.

Where will a single person's assets go after death?

Single people in Boston may not think that they need an estate plan since they are not married and/or do not have children. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Any adult who has assets typically benefits from at least a basic estate plan in order to avoid dying intestate, which means that state law would dictate how the estate would be distributed. Dying without at least a will may make it unnecessarily challenging for the family members left behind.