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January 2012 Archives

Trust fund trustees must face allegations of breach of trust

One of the basic rules of a trust fund is that the trustee, the person who manages the trust fund, has an obligation to make sure that he or she always acts in good faith and with the benefit of the beneficiaries of the fund in mind. This applies in every state of the union, including New Jersey.

Estate planning doesn't have to be complicated

Recently, Americans celebrated the life and leadership of Martin Luther King, Jr. He was known for his brilliant vision of an America without racial segregation or discrimination. Interestingly enough, a man known for being forward-thinking didn't even have a will. Since his death there have been disputes over his estate because he didn't take steps to plan his estate. Yet planning an estate does not have to be a painful task, like many in New Jersey might think.

Court fight over Kevorkian art localized to one state

The legal fight for ownership of artwork by notorious assisted suicide practitioner, Dr. Jack Kevorkian, is becoming a bit more focused. Two suits, in separate states, have been inching along in recent months. Now, one has been dismissed while the other proceeds. As New Jersey estate planning lawyers we find the matter interesting.

Senator outlines bill to protect seniors from abusive guardians

The concept of the family is not what it used to be in this country. Chances are it's likely to change even more in the years to come, especially as the senior population continues to grow here in New Jersey and the rest of the country.

What doctors may know that others don't re: end of life

The general rule of thumb in the medical world is that everything that can be done to preserve life for a patient must be done. Medical professionals everywhere, including New Jersey, toe that line, especially barring any specific guidance from individual patients. To do otherwise would be a monumental breach of ethics and possibly law.

Heirs can wield great power if granted through an estate plan

There was a time when Broadway served as the gold standard of American entertainment. There are those who lament that the shimmer has faded. But there are signs that managers of some of the greatest musical theater estates are trying to breathe new life into the Great White Way. It's a trend that is noted by observant estate planning attorneys in New Jersey and elsewhere.

Legal wrangling over Farrah painting

One painting. Two lawsuits. How does such a thing happen? The easy answer, as estate lawyers in New Jersey or any other state can tell you, is lack of clear communication. If someone is fortunate enough to have personal property of significant value it is important to spell out specifically how each piece of that property should be handled in the event of death. This is most easily done through a proper will, trust or other document within the portfolio of a complete estate plan.

Preventing elder abuse requires planning, possibly guardian

Many experts agree that one of the issues that's going to be of growing concern in the next ten years or more is financial abuse of our aging population. It doesn't matter if you live in New Jersey or another state, the increasing size of the aging population and the concurrent increase in cases of brain-damaging dementia in that population means an anticipated rise in financial abuse of the elderly.

$9 million settlement highlights value of trust

It is a sad fact that many people believe wills and trusts are only for the rich and famous. So many people find themselves living check to check that they see no point in drawing up an estate plan. The idea that they might even have an estate may be completely unimaginable to them.

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