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August 2019 Archives

Undue Influence | The Danger of Deathbed Transfers

Undue Influence | The Danger of Deathbed TransfersThere's a reason that deathbed transfers of estate or trust assets are more likely to be contested. And the story you're about to hear just provides further confirmation. Eleanor Potter was 89 when she died in 2015 at her residence in Maine. By all accounts, she led a good life. She was married for 41 years to Newell Potter, the owner of a local furniture store in Maine, and though they had no children, the Potters enjoyed a wide circle of friends. Eleanor worked at IBM for 40 years, she was active in local civic organizations, the couple traveled extensively, and she and her husband collected art and antiques.

Trust Accountings | Discovery of Fraud and Embezzlement

Trust Accountings Fraud Embezzlement.jpgTrust accountings can be routine or the genesis for shocking discoveries of embezzlement and trustee fraud. Embezzlement is the fraudulent appropriation of property belonging to someone else by a person to whom it has been entrusted. The theft of property with a value of more than $950 can be prosecuted by law enforcement agencies as a felony. Civil wrongs stemming from the same acts may be litigated in the civil courts.

Life Insurance Beneficiary Challenges | Fraud & Undue Influence

Life Insurance Beneficiary CA Fraud Undue Influence.jpgLife insurance beneficiary challenges occur with some regularity in California's Superior Courts. Timeliness is critical in contesting a life insurance beneficiary designation or life insurance beneficiary claim.

Interview with Pamela Wilson | The Caring Generation

Interview with Pamela Wilson | The Caring GenerationRecently Michael Hackard joined Pamela D. Wilson, a caregiving expert and advocate for protecting the well-being of seniors. Pamela is the host of The Caring Generation, and we were honored to speak with her about how to counter elder financial abuse and undue influence. Thank you for the great talk, Pamela!

Recommendations from a Litigator to California Attorney Estate Planners

Guidelines for Attorneys on Elder Financial Abuse.jpgAt Hackard Law, we do California estate, trust and elder financial abuse litigation. Our practice experience includes circumstances where it seems that estate planning lawyers haven't really done their job. The few examples below are collected from real world experience and changed to protect the privacy of the parties involved.

The Unitrust Solution | Annual Beneficiary Income from 3% to 5%

Unitrust Income for Beneficiaries.jpgWe've all heard or said something like: "How would you like it if someone did the same thing to you?" It's a heartfelt question. It calls to mind our willingness to consider another viewpoint - to empathize.

Unfair Fiduciary Distributions | Looking Out for Number One

Unfair Fiduciaries Trust Beneficiaries.jpgI'm Mike Hackard of Hackard Law. I feel fortunate to represent abused beneficiaries seeking justice against trustees who appear to put their own financial interest over the beneficiaries they are duty bound to serve.

California Estate and Trust Houses Draw Real Estate Agents' Focus

Trust Estate Houses Litigation.jpgAtherton, our nation's most expensive ZIP code, is in the heart of the California Bay Area. Atherton's median price for a single-family home in the first half of 2019 was $8.1 million. Real estate agents and brokers who handle these sales have plenty of reason to celebrate when an escrow closes. While Atherton house values are setting records the rest of the Bay Area housing market also have significant values. Median home prices for June, 2019 were $1,549,000 (San Mateo), $1,250,000 (Santa Clara), $926,000 (Alameda), and $665,000 (Contra Costa). When it comes to estate and trust transfers these high house values have significant repercussions.

Anthony Bourdain's Estate | Pitfalls in the Will

Anthony Bourdain Estate Trust.jpg

Disappointed Trust Beneficiaries | A Better Way

Disappointed Trust Beneficaries California.jpgWe've shared over 500 blog posts and YouTube videos with people interested in trust, estate, probate and elder financial abuse issues.

Trustee's Professional Fees | How Much are They Paid?

Trustee Professional Fees Payment.jpgCalifornia law provides that both individual and corporate trustees are entitled to compensation for their services as trustee. Corporate trustees, sometimes referenced as professional trustees, are different than individuals - like an aunt or an uncle administering a trust.

Trust & Estate Litigation | From A to Z

Trust Estate Litigation A to Z Guide.jpgIt's been over 40 years since I first represented clients in a will contest. A lot has changed over the years in estate litigation on behalf of beneficiaries. We now have elder financial abuse laws that can be enforced in jury trials. These newer laws often supplement the rights and remedies available from probate courts and allow the prosecution of some claims in the civil trial courts.

What is an Estate? | It Pays for You to Know

What is an Estate Trust Assets.jpg"What is an Estate?" This question, while appearing simple on its face, generates a few other questions. The word is used in so many contexts - estate planning, estate trust, testate estate, intestate estate, estate accounts, estate homes, estate personal representatives, estate administrators and estate executors. So, let's start with its meaning within the context of a probate estate. An estate is testate if the person has a will at the time of death and intestate if the person died without a will.

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