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July 2014 Archives

Reasoning behind Philip Seymour Hoffman's estate plan

As questions swirled in Pennsylvania and across the nation about Philip Seymour Hoffman's reasoning behind his failure to name his children in his trust, the actor reportedly stated that he was concerned that his children would turn into "trust fund kids." He left everything to his girlfriend, the mother of all three children. His attorney repeatedly advised him to set up revocable trusts for his children. However, he did not heed his suggestions or those of his accountant.

Handling a person's credit card debt after their death

Residents of Pennsylvania may be wondering how credit card debt is handled after the cardholder dies. After death, debts do not disappear. Instead, they become part of the person's estate. If someone wrote a will before their death, it will name an executor to administer the estate. When someone fails to leave a will a probate court will name an adminstrator. This person often ends up being a child or spouse.

Lou Reed shows disadvantages of using a will

Because the late Lou Reed, singer and lead guitarist of The Velvet Underground, chose to use a will instead of a trust to distribute his lifetime earnings, Pennsylvania residents might be privy to the personal details of the distribution of his estate. However, estate planning alternatives could have spared him the public display of his wealth and how he decided to dispose of it.

Reducing the odds of will contests in Pennsylvania

Baby boomers are estimated to be due to inherit $8.4 billion from their parents in the coming years, and this has led to an increase in court battles between family members over wills. While most disputes regarding wills are referred by courts to mediators, some cases take a long time to resolve in court.

How a will could be invalidated

Making a will can be a great way to ensure that money and other assets are distributed to those that the creator of the will wants to receive them. However, it is possible to have a will invalidated in a Pennsylvania court for a variety of reasons. There are three key factors which could serve to undermine the document.

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