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Maryland Estate Planning: Is a Living Trust a Good Idea?

A living trust is a written legal document that places assets in a trust which can still be used by the principle. Once the principle dies, the trust can be transferred to the designated beneficiaries. There are many benefits to creating a living trust. One reason to create a living trust is to avoid probate. […]

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Who Can Obtain a Living Person’s Will in Maryland?

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In Maryland if the Will has been filed with the Register of Wills county office (or city office if in Baltimore) only the testator—the person who created the Will–or someone who has written permission signed by the testator can withdraw a Will from safekeeping. Proper identification is required by the clerks in the Register of […]

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Maryland Estate Planning for Pets: Pet Trusts

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I occasionally have clients inquire about making estate planning provisions for their pets. Under Maryland law this can be accomplished with the right estate plan. You can make provisions for your pet within your Maryland Last Will and Testament. Another approach is to create a Maryland Pet Trust. This type of trust is created specifically […]

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Formal Requirements for a Valid Will in Maryland

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Under Maryland law you must sign your will and two or more witnesses must sign the will in your presence. There are also formalities on informing the witnesses as to what you are signing though they are not required to read and understand the contents of the will. Each witness must be at least 18 […]

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What Death Taxes are Payable in Maryland?

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Both the federal and state governments impose taxes upon the property/estate of a decedent. A federal estate tax with graduated rates is imposed on all property interests that the decedent owned at the time of death. The federal estate tax applies to probate assets and also to non-probate assets. For example, joint property and insurance […]

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Maryland Trust for Individual With Special Needs

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Parents of a child with special needs have unique concerns when planning for their child’s welfare after the parents have passed away. Important practical and legal decisions need to be made to determine how and in what manner the needs of the child will be met. Careful consideration—including benefit implications—needs to be given when considering […]

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How Should My Maryland Will Provide for My Children?

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When your will is drafted you should designate a person, or people, who will serve as guardian if you and your partner both die while your child is a minor; in Maryland this is a child under the age of 18. Your will also gives you the opportunity to create trusts that will control how, […]

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Parkville, Maryland Estate Planning: File Your Will

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Maryland law allows Wills to be filed with the county in which you live. As an estate planning attorney who works in Parkville, I have encountered clients who have failed (or their attorney failed) to file their Will with the county. This is a critical final step in the Will creation process as it ensures […]

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Maryland Estate Planning: Creating Estate Planning Documents such as Wills, Trusts, Durable Powers of Attorney & Advance Directives

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Here are some good questions to ask an attorney when you are considering hiring that attorney to create an estate plan for you. These are questions that are sometimes asked of me and I have included my answers after each question. “How do you draft your estate planning documents?” I begin by learning what you […]

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Baltimore, Maryland Estate Planning Attorney: How is a Will Affected by Marriage or Divorce?

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Under Maryland law a will is not affected simply by a subsequent marriage. But if a child born following that marriage survives the parent, they the will is revoked. A divorce automatically revokes the provisions of the will that pertain to your former spouse, but does not affect other provisions of the will. Thus the […]

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