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April 2014 Archives

Giving all your money to charity might let you avoid disputes

There are a few ways that a person can have a say in their affairs after their death. In many cases, wishes that a person has expressed might be modified or even ignored. However, having a will that makes a person's wishes clear can go a long way toward ensuring that those desires are carried out.

Not keeping tabs on beneficiary arrangements can cause heartache

On our Queens probate and estate administration blog, we talk frequently about the necessity of getting one's affairs in order. Making sure that our estate is in order by taking the necessary steps can ease the estate administration process after we're gone. One thing in particular that people need to pay attention to is the beneficiary arrangements on accounts such as individual retirement accounts, such as IRAs.

Fight over Mickey Rooney's estate likely only just beginning

We often write on our blog about issues that celebrities run into when their wills are made public after their death. Due to their large estates, thanks to a lifetime of movie star salaries, there can be bitter fights among heirs. The estate of screen legend Mickey Rooney, who died recently at age 93, is experiencing some of these issues -- although his estate wasn't nearly as large as some people might have expected it to be.

Put careful thought into whom you will name as your executor

Few people actually look forward to estate planning. Putting yourself in the frame of mind to do it means that you have to think about what the world will be like after you're no longer in it, which is not something that everyone wants to do. However, ultimately it's something that needs to be done. It's a way of having a say in your affairs after you're gone, which is certainly preferable to leaving no instructions behind -- and having your estate eaten up by taxes and fees.