JAMES B. FLEMING – ATTORNEY at LAW – MONTICELLO, MN
Serving clients with legal representation in Wright County, Sherburne County, Stearns County, Anoka County, Ramsey County, the Minneapolis area of Hennepin County and greater Minnesota.
FLEMING LAW OFFICES, P.A. – Attorney Jim Fleming • PO Box 1569, Monticello, MN 55362 • Office: 763-291-4011
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This question comes up often following the death of a family member. One of the first questions to be answered is whether Minnesota law requires a probate. Not all property owned by a decedent must be transferred through probate. To determine whether probate is required, you must first list and categorize the property owned by the decedent at death, and classify it as either probate or non-probate property, such as , life insurance, and retirement plans with beneficiary designations or property titled in joint tenancy. All property can be categorized in one of these two ways. The form of ownership of the property by the decedent determines whether an asset is a probate asset or a non-probate asset. Once the asset is classified, whether a probate proceeding of some kind is necessary to transfer title of the asset to a beneficiary is easy to determine.
What Is a Health Care Power of Attorney?
We recommend that all adults – even the young and healthy – set up an advance directive known as a health care power of attorney. This legally binding document allows to appoint another person as your "agent" or "proxy" who can make medical decisions for you when you are no longer able to do so. You never know what might happen to you that may render you incapacitated, either temporarily or permanently. Many people do not take action in this regard despite the fact that on any given day they could become involved in a vehicle accident that could seriously injury or incapacitate them. If you are unable to speak for yourself and a conflict arises related to your medical treatment between your health care provider and family members, the judicial system will step in and appoint a guardian to help resolve it. You have the power to take control and manage that decision making process to prevent it from going into the hands of judicial appointment. With a properly executed legal document you can chose the person to medical decisions for you when you are no longer able.
We often times have clients arrive at Fleming Law Offices for a consultation with family estate planning documents that were found online only to discover it was not legally binding.
Plan ahead, consult with attorney Jim Fleming and have the peace of mind knowing you have a legal document that has been properly drafted so your wishes will be honored. NOTE: The same will hold true for other Estate Planning documents such as Wills, durable and non-durable Powers of Attorney.
• Advance Health Care Directives
• Durable/Non-Durable Power of Attorney
• Trusts and Trust Administration
• Charitable Planning
Laws governing these advance directives
vary from state to state and laws can
change over time. Don't put these
importance decisions at risk by assuming
your Free download from the Internet will
be a legally binding document just because
you sign it. At a minimum you should have
your document reviewed by an attorney.
Consult with attorney, Jim Fleming to
ensure your document is legally binding.
FLEMING LAW OFFICES | ATTORNEY, JIM FLEMING | OFFICE: 763-291-4011
Careful and creative estate planning is crucial to preserving your wealth for your family’s future. Whether or not you realize it, you have an estate that will be subject to default laws of taxation and distribution that may not align with how you desire your estate to be distributed. Moreover, your assets may be exposed to unanticipated traps that proper estate planning would eliminate.
Properly executed documents will also allow your loved ones health needs to be cared for and directed by those they choose in advance of the actual need.Too many people wait until it's to late to make those decisions. It's never too early to start planning and you cannot afford ot put it off. If you have a will or health care directive it is also a good idea to evaluate and update it over time without assuming it's still current with your needs of today.