Be Aware: Joint Tenancy Holds Risks And Medicaid Disadvantages

Most folks don’t know about the dangers that joint tenancy may bring after execution. Joint tenancy is an estate planning instrument that creates co-ownership in an asset and allows for property interests to move to surviving tenants automatically upon the death of a co-owner. Co-ownership likewise serves as a probate-avoidance tool, but such titles can sometimes do more harm than …

Essential Guide For Evicting Squatters In Iowa: Why You Need To Act Quickly

Squatting arises when someone enters vacant land or property you own or stand to inherit and attempts to take possession without your permission. In most cases, this act is both a civil and criminal trespass—but sometimes the squatter’s possession can be perfectly legal. Squatter problems could happen to you at any time, and people who invade your property will usually …

Important Undue Influence FAQs For Victims Who Had Their Inheritance Hijacked

A valid will or trust in Iowa must demonstrate that the author acted autonomously during the estate planning and execution stages. Sometimes, however, an individual close to the drafter may have intentionally or inadvertently displaced his/her desire to inherit over the author’s original intent to distribute assets equally among heirs. Such undue influence provides grounds for interested parties to contest …

7 Simple Facts That Make Understanding Joint Tenancy Easier

If you’re confused about what joint tenancy means and how the ambiguous legal instrument affects estate assets during probate, you’re not alone. In a nutshell, you’d execute this ownership arrangement to control who will take your share of property by default after you pass away. As a co-owner, you may hold either tenant in common or joint tenant assets. You …

8 Tips That Can Help You Challenge Testamentary Documents Like an Pro

Contesting a will or trust means challenging the terms of the testamentary documents admitted into probate, usually with a lawyer’s assistance. Probate litigation is often a long and expensive process, but if someone has stolen your inheritance after a loved one passes away, a will or trust challenge may be your best chance to recover what you lost. In this …

Warning: Excessive Probate Fees May Provoke Expensive Fiduciary Litigation

If you’re in the process of drafting a will or trust, you should think very carefully about who will personally represent you after your death and about the fees he/she may take while administering your estate. Executor earnings in Iowa for services rendered are fairly reasonable (as long as the estate faces no will challenges); however, your legacy may encounter …

Win Testamentary Capacity Will Challenges Through Evidence of a Testator’s Memory Loss

The law presumes you make your intentions evident when disposing your assets through a valid will or trust and that you possessed the requisite legal capacity to do so before executing such testamentary documents. When testators however lack testamentary capacity, undue influence sometimes follows which can adversely impact an heir’s rightful inheritance during probate. For this reason, the Iowa Supreme …

Nine Real-Life Examples For Understanding Informal Fiduciary Relationships Better

What are informal confidential relationships according to Iowa law, and how do they affect interested parties who bring fiduciary litigation? Fiduciary positions have evolved over the years. What was formerly an easy-to-identify traditional fiduciary role now takes some investigation and scrutiny to discover whether an individual was in a confidential relationship with another party. Moreover, implied confidential relationships are harder …