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October 2014 Archives

How can someone become a guardian in California?

When someone wants to become a guardian of a child in California, they typically do so by filing a petition with the court. Other relatives of the child must be given notice in addition to the parents if they are living. If either one of the parents object, the court will hold a contested hearing at which the intended guardian will need to show that it is in the best interests of the child to appoint him or her as the child's guardian.

Are all assets covered by a will?

In drafting a will, a California resident may wonder whether all assets and belongings are covered by the document. In some cases, an individual might choose to clarify designations already included in assets such as life insurance policies and retirement plans. In other cases, there might be a concern about whether articles held in joint tenancy should still be listed in a will. It is helpful to recognize that only assets titled in one's own name at the time of death are typically covered by the directions set forth in the will.

Estate planning benefits of Section 529 accounts

People in California who save for their dependents' college tuition in a Section 529 college savings account are able to accumulate tax-free accounts. This is a major factor for why people choose this type of account, but what many people might not realize is that these accounts are also beneficial during estate planning.

The use of living wills in estate planning

A California resident may wonder about the preparation of a living will, which is a written expression that indicates how someone wants to be treated in given medical situations. An individual may detail wishes for or against life-sustaining measures. Similarly, preferences for tube feeding and other means of providing hydration and nourishment may be expressed.

What are the duties of a trustee?

A trustee in the state of California has the responsibility of managing property in a trust that has been established for an individual's beneficiaries. The trustee is required to adhere to the requirements that the creator of the trust, also known as the settlor, mandated.

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