Estate Planning for Smart People

August 9, 2016

Estate Planning for Smart People does take off on the better known series. And, for sure, I’m not offering a full-fledged book here. Instead, I write to share some thoughts and provide some guidance for a particular group of people: smart people.

If you’re here you’re a smart person. Why? Because you’re devoting time and energy to the estate planning process. It’s a process, for sure, and it does take time and energy. And lots of thinking!

For many reasons the whole estate planning thing makes people uncomfortable. Here are some of those reasons:

  • It’s about not being among us.
  • It often involves hard decisions about important matters.
  • It can be mysterious and intimidating.
  • It can cost lots of money.
Continue reading...

Some Thoughts About Contested Probate Cases

June 13, 2016

Family law was never my thing. Alas, we don’t often know how life will turn out. About 15 years ago my practice focus shifted much more heavily into probate and estate planning. And probate, it turns out, is family law without the divorces, mostly.

Most probate matters—no good stats, but far more than 90% is my best estimate—get processed easily, quickly, and for a few thousand dollars. Then there are the outliers, which almost always have in common: (a) a dysfunctional family; and (b) deceased or demented parents. Sometimes, there’s lots of money or complicated assets, but in plenty of cases an inverse relationship exists between value and the intensity of the battle.

The battle may arise in a conservatorship

Continue reading...

Make-a-Will Month and Estate Planning

February 29, 2016

Make-A-Will Month starts tomorrow. Yes, it’s a bit of a contrivance, advanced by the Planned Giving Roundtable (now called the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning) and championed by nonprofits, but the month provides an opportunity to think about estate planning and getting your affairs in order.

I’ve shared pieces about estate planning on several occasions. (Click on Probate and Estate Planning under Categories on the right side of your screen for links.) Today, I want to address some myths about estate planning, probate, and end of life issues. Some have been mentioned before but here are my Great Eight (in reverse order):

  • My Power of Attorney Has Me Covered. A power of attorney is cheap, and it has its
Continue reading...

Mark Rubin, Tucson Attorney

June 13, 2015

I thought I had a post which explained what I do as a Tucson attorney. Using an Attorney Effectively and Working (Mark Rubin) don’t quite nail the issue, and About Mark Rubin doesn’t either.

My practices falls within three broad areas. They are: (a) probate and fiduciary matters, and estate planning; (b) business and real estate, including advising, documenting transactions, and handling lawsuits; and (c) ethics, professionalism, and discipline.

In the probate and fiduciary world, there’s lots of paper and process. Probate involves the affairs of people who have died, as well as young people with money or no parents, or both, and older people who need help because of mental or physical infirmities. There’s paper and process because we

Continue reading...