For most opposite sex couples, the question of their legal status in California or elsewhere is generally a simple one – they are either married or single*. The question of status is not as clear for same sex couples because there are three distinct legal statuses that a same sex couple may hold. The four
For the first time in twelve years, federal employees have a chance to add or increase their group life insurance with no medical exam or health questions asked, but only during the month of September. FEGLI-eligible employees may also elect additional coverage on the life of their spouse. For many LGBT families married only in
A Successor Trustee should be exactly that – someone who will take over management of your Trust should you ever need and definitely someone whom you trust. When considering who you might want to choose, there are both practical and emotional considerations. The practical considerations are easier to think about in terms of what this
There are many reasons to set up a trust rather than a will. In California, trusts are often set up to avoid the costs and delays probate, which is the court supervised administration of an estate. However, your trust must be “funded” in order to avoid probate or additional court petitions to move assets into your
By Joseph L. Urbanski Clients who request our services for a pre-marital or post-marital agreement often do not fully understand the importance of attorney involvement. They acknowledge that an attorney may present issues not yet considered, but they often discover that there are myriad issues that can be negotiated and others which cannot. What many
When our clients come to us with questions about spousal support (or “alimony”) whether in contemplation of a prenuptial agreement, a post-nuptial agreement, or divorce, they are often fearful of its uncertainty. Common concerns run from “will my spouse/partner take everything I have?” to “what if I can’t support myself after our marriage?” While there
California Probate Code Section 21350, also known as the Care Custodian Statute, presumptively invalidates testamentary gifts (gifts left in a will or a trust or even by beneficiary designation) made by an elder to individuals who provided health and social services to the elder. Health and Social services is very broad and can include daily
Simply put, a transmutation changes the character of property from separate to community, community to separate, or the separate of one to the separate of another. Under the California Family Code, transmutations may only occur between spouses or registered domestic partners, and they do not involve third parties. The Family Code outlines the method to effectuate a
When a person dies without leaving a will, it is called intestacy. When one dies intestate, their estate enters probate, a legal process in which one’s property is identified, inventoried, and distributed to heirs. Probate is a “one-size-fits-all” system that does not account for one’s intentions for their property after death. Probate takes an extremely
How do you determine whether there is income from cancellation of debt from a foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure or short sale?
Cancellation of debt (COD) income is defined as the amount by which the canceled debt is more than the fair market value of the property which was used to secure the loan. COD income can occur when a bank forgives part of a debt to which a person was personally liable.