Even making those who are involved aware of your intentions does not always guarantee that they will follow through with them after you have passed away. That is way, in Miami-Dade and elsewhere, creating a valid estate plan to convey your wishes is so important for probate avoidance and to ensure your assets are distributed in the way that you had wished-for.
Two men in North Carolina are reportedly suing a real estate development firm that their father founded for refusing to turn over at least $200 million in assets to their later father’s estate. According to reports, the man had decided to change his original estate plan and was in the process of modifying it in order to create a charitable foundation and trust using his assets upon his death. Since he unexpectedly died before he was able to sign the documents finalizing the changes, the man’s company will not release the assets.
The men are reportedly requesting the court to uphold their father’s intentions, despite his never having signed the necessary documents. They are asking a judge to finalize the process of creating the charitable trust and foundation and to issue a court order to force their father’s company to turn over the assets that they claim are trust property. If a judge approves the requests in this case, it would set new precedents for estate documents, which previously were only deemed valid if handwritten by the decedent themselves or if signed and witnessed by at least two other people.
There are a number of different options available when estate planning to meet the needs of all types of people and situations. If you need assistance creating an estate plan, it may be of benefit to consult with an attorney to discuss which options are right for you.
Source: Charlotte Observer, “Family of NC developer sues company over assets”, Oct. 22, 2013