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Should I Hire an Attorney for a Trust Administration?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jul 16, 2019 | 0 Comments

If someone with a trust has passed away, and you were named successor trustee of that trust, you have a lot of work to do. You may be trying to decide between hiring a lawyer or going it alone to save money on attorneys' fees. Although some tasks can be completed on your own, the overall process ...

What is a “Life Estate”?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jul 09, 2019 | 0 Comments

Some people, rather than giving property outright to someone in their will or trust, would rather just let the beneficiary live there until the beneficiary dies. This type of gift is called a “life estate.” A life estate is an interest in real property that is usually measured by the person holdi...

How Does A Living Trust Avoid Probate?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jul 02, 2019 | 0 Comments

You've probably heard that a living trust can keep your estate out of probate when you die. But how exactly does this work? It's about ownership When you die, the assets you own no longer have an owner. The owner is dead. The probate process allows the court to appoint someone to take ownership o...

What is a “Restatement of Trust”?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jun 25, 2019 | 0 Comments

When you execute a revocable living trust, the terms of your trust are spelled out in the trust document. However, sometimes you want to replace those terms entirely. You do this by “restating” your trust. It's still the same trust, but with all new terms, spelled out in a new document, executed ...

Can an irrevocable trust be modified?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jun 18, 2019 | 0 Comments

The term “irrevocable” generally means that a trust cannot be revoked or modified/amended. However, the Probate Code provides options to modify or terminate an otherwise irrevocable trust in certain circumstances. These Probate Code sections can provide some helpful flexibility during a trust adm...

Neighbor Disputes are a Common Problem

Posted by Michael Guzman | May 01, 2019 | 0 Comments

Neighbor Disputes are a Common Problem An average of 42% of Americans says they've been involved in a dispute with their neighbors. If you are feeling alone in this frustration – fear not. While most neighborly arguments don't turn into epic feuds, they can be frustrating to deal with. Some can e...

New $75 Fee for Recording Documents in San Diego

Posted by Michael Guzman | Mar 26, 2019 | 0 Comments

As you may or may not have noticed, the San Diego County Recorder (and other county recorders as well) have started charging a new $75 fee for each recorded document, effective January 1, 2018. This new fee is courtesy of Senate Bill 2 (“SB-2”), which authorizes the $75 charge on top of regular r...

Sexual Harassment In The Workplace

Posted by Michael Guzman | Mar 19, 2019 | 0 Comments

Sexual harassment is a serious threat in the workplace. The recent #metoo movement has influenced local lawmakers to reconsider the protection policies in place. The state of California has adjusted employment laws beginning in 2019. Employers and employees should stay up-to-date on these new reg...

What happens when a trust document is lost?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jul 28, 2017 | 0 Comments

Not all trust administrations are smooth and easy. Sometimes a trustee runs into difficulties that need to be overcome in order to complete the process. One of the most challenging problems of a trust administration is the loss of the trust document altogether. Without the trust document, the dec...

When property is transferred to an invalid trust

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jul 24, 2017 | 0 Comments

For a trust to be valid, certain requirements must be met. For instance, a trust must have trust property and a beneficiary. If it does not have both, it fails and a trust is not created. Sometimes the failure of the trust is not discovered until later. The question is, “Who holds title to proper...

Estate Administration: What is a trust contest?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jun 30, 2017 | 0 Comments

If you are the trustee of a trust, your goal is usually for the administration to go as smoothly as possible. Unfortunately, it doesn't always work out that way. Sometimes an unhappy beneficiary (or more than one) decides to contest the trust. A trust contest is a proceeding where an heir or bene...

Transferring real property after the death of an owner

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jun 16, 2017 | 0 Comments

When a person dies leaving behind real property, sometimes there will be work to do to make sure the property is properly titled or transferred. Depending on how the property was held, this might be a relatively simple task, or it might be much more involved. Here are some common situations and a...

“Statute of limitations” vs. “Statute of repose”

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jun 09, 2017 | 0 Comments

Most people are familiar with the term “statute of limitations.” This is essentially a statutory time limit imposed on your ability to file a claim. The time limit is different depending on the cause of action. For instance, the limitations period for a personal injury claim is 2 years from the d...

Tips for Selling a Business

Posted by Michael Guzman | Jun 02, 2017 | 0 Comments

If you're looking to sell your business, there is a lot to consider. Of course you want to get the best deal, but you also want to comply with the law, minimize taxes, and make sure the new owner will take good care of your legacy. Whether selling your business is a long term or short term goal, ...

Dissolution of a Limited Liability Company

Posted by Michael Guzman | May 19, 2017 | 0 Comments

Sometimes it becomes necessary to shut down your limited liability company (LLC). However, there are steps that need to be followed to properly dissolve a LLC. Here are the general steps involved in the LLC dissolution process in California. What triggers the dissolution of a LLC? There are sever...

Two exceptions to reassessment of real property

Posted by Michael Guzman | May 12, 2017 | 0 Comments

When real property is transferred or sold in California, it is subject to reassessment at the current market value. The result is often an increase in the property taxes owed by the new owner; sometimes this is a significant increase. However, there are several transfer situations that are exclud...

When a will or trust fails to name a spouse or child

Posted by Michael Guzman | May 08, 2017 | 0 Comments

If you execute a will or a trust prior to marriage or having a child, you may forget to update your estate plan to include your new spouse or child. The law in California presumes this was a mistake and entitles the omitted (or “pretermitted”) spouse or child to his or her share. This share is ge...

What is a “postnuptial agreement”?

Posted by Michael Guzman | May 03, 2017 | 0 Comments

A postnuptial agreement is a contract made by spouses after marriage (as opposed to a prenuptial agreement). Postnuptial agreements are not to be confused with marital settlement agreements, which are executed as part of the divorce process. Married couples sometimes decide to enter into such con...

Estate Administration: What is a Heggstad petition?

Posted by Michael Guzman | Apr 25, 2017 | 0 Comments

A living trust is an important estate planning document that allows your estate to avoid probate. Of course, it is of no use if you fail to transfer your assets into the trust. In this case, when you die, nothing is owned in the name of the trust, so there is nothing to administer according to it...

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