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Estate, Will and Probate Contests

Monday, December 13, 2021

Probate in Michigan

Probate is a legal process that is sometimes required after a person dies. During probate, the assets of a deceased person—called a decedent—are distributed to his or her heirs or beneficiaries. In addition, if a decedent has outstanding debts, the probate court will sell his or her assets to pay creditors what they are owed. In this article, we discuss the probate process in Michigan.

When is Probate Required?

In Michigan, probate is necessary when a person dies while owning property or assets that are listed under his or her name alone.
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Monday, November 15, 2021

Ways to Avoid Probate in Michigan

Probate is the process by which a court facilitates the distribution of a deceased person’s assets. Unfortunately, however, the probate process is often long, expensive, and confusing. Therefore, one of the primary goals of estate planning for most people is the avoidance of probate. In this article, we discuss some of the ways to avoid probate in Michigan.

Living Trusts

A living trust is a legal document that places your assets in trust for your benefit during your lifetime, and it details where you'd like these assets to go upon your death.

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Monday, May 24, 2021

Estate Planning for an Irresponsible Child

When determining how to distribute your assets upon your passing, it’s important to determine whether your child is responsible enough to manage an inheritance. Managing money is tough, and if your child isn’t yet mature enough to responsibly handle money, you need to take this into account during the estate planning process. In this article, we review the ways in which you can leave money to a child who, for whatever reason, isn’t quite ready to responsibly handle it.

Establishing a Trust

A trust is an estate planning tool that provides you with control over how and when an inheritance is distributed to your child. In other words, rather than providing a child or young adult with a lump sum of money that he or she may not be mature enough to handle, a trust allows you to distribute payments in a controlled manner.
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Thursday, August 8, 2019

Here's Why You May Need a Revocable Living Trust in Michigan

A revocable living trust allows an individual to retain complete control over his or her assets while maintaining the ability to amend or revoke the trust at any time. However, the assets in the trust remain available to creditors. Therefore, while this type of trust is not for everyone, it may be beneficial to certain individuals for the following reasons. 

Control over distributions to beneficiaries 

A revocable living trust gives the trust creator (trustor) control over the way in which assets are distributed to beneficiaries. This is particularly useful to parents who have concerns that their children may waste the trust assets they receive.


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Monday, November 5, 2018

Incorporating Cryptocurrency Into Your Estate Plan

The witty and wise Benjamin Franklin once said, “...in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” We can think of no better quote to sum up the developing cryptocurrency economy. The owners of Bitcoin and other digital currencies have a vision for what they hope digital currency will evolve into, but for now, all that they can be assured of is that their assets will be taxed, and that someday they will die. Savvy crypto-holders are preparing for these two eventualities by incorporating their digital assets into their estate plans.

What is cryptocurrency?

If you are reading this post, you most likely know what cryptocurrency is from a technical and cultural standpoint. So, we’re not going to go into that. What we are more interested in is what the law says cryptocurrency is.

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Monday, October 8, 2018

What to Ask Yourself about Estate Planning in Michigan

Estate planning is an important process, and it’s something that everyone should undertake at some point in their lives. However, before getting started, you should ask yourself several questions, including:

  • Who will be my children’s guardian?
  • What types of things should I put in my will?
  • Who will be my estate’s executor?
  • Do I need a power of attorney?
  • Do I need to establish a trust for my children?

Depending on your familiarity with the estate planning process, you may or may not know the answers to these questions…and that’s okay! At Keating Law, PLC, we realize that not everyone has experience with estate planning, which is one of the reasons that our experienced estate planning attorneys are always eager to answer any questions you may have about the process. In the meantime, though, below is some basic information to help you get started with the estate planning process.

Who will be my children’s guardian?

It’s important to designate a guardian for your children during the estate planning process. If you fail to name a guardian, however, this decision will be placed in the hands of the court.

What types of things should I put in my will?

Your will should include, at a minimum, the names of the people chosen to receive your property and the property to be distributed. However, certain types of assets and property should be omitted, including certain kinds of retirement accounts and life insurance policies.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Estate Planning Considerations for Unmarried Couples

Estate planning, which is the legal structuring of the disposition of one's assets, is a process that all couples—both married and unmarried—should consider participating in. However, estate planning is especially important for unmarried couples, as unmarried couples are afforded far less legal protection than those couples who are married. Below are some things that unmarried couples should consider when approaching the estate planning process in Michigan.  

Things to Consider

Who gets the home?  – The family home is an important issue to address during the estate planning process, particularly for unmarried couples who want to leave it to their surviving children while protecting each other’s interests. One way to address this issue is to create a life estate for the surviving partner in the relationship.

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Thursday, June 7, 2018

Estate Planning: Things to Consider in Michigan

Estate planning involves structuring the disposition of one's assets. Estate plans should account for expected and unexpected life events, and they commonly address the way in which assets will be distributed in both life and death. Below are some things to consider when starting the estate planning process in Michigan.

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Thursday, May 10, 2018

Why Casey Kasem’s Kids Think Michigan Needs To Change Its Laws

Do children have a right to visit their dying parents? In Michigan, they soon may thanks to the children of Casey Kasem, Mickey Rooney, and Glen Campbell. Regardless of what the law is, this is something anyone who is making an estate plan should think about.

A lot of attention is paid to parental rights, and rightfully so, but as the Baby Boomer generation ages, a new issue is emerging - adult children who are prevented from visiting their dying parents.
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Saturday, November 11, 2017

How Often Should I Update My Estate Plan?

We all know we’re supposed to change the oil in the car every 3,000 miles, clean our furnace filters monthly, and defragment our hard drives every week or so. But routine maintenance is one of those things that gets skipped when our schedules get too busy. So, we drive our car until it makes that weird noise, run our furnace until it breaks down, and cross our fingers that our computers are set up to do what they need to do on their own in the background.

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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

DIY Estate Planning Does Not Work Well For Everyone

The Do-It-Yourself, or DIY, movement has become huge since the Great Recession. What started as a necessity has now become a hobby. Hipsters have gone mainstream and it seems like everyone is taking to Instagram to show off pictures of their home brewed kombucha or a bookcase made from an old shipping pallet. But there is one task that DIYers should be extra cautious about tackling on their own:

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