November 2014 Archives

How to ensure the validity of wills in Missouri

It is critical for a will to be legally valid and steps must be taken to ensure that during its formation. In Missouri, like anywhere else in the US, a will is an instrument that ensures that the property of a deceased person is distributed according to his or her intention, which is explained in the instrument itself.

The role of trustees under Missouri statutes

Missouri's statutes set out many responsibilities for trustees in the performance of their duties following the death of a person leaving an estate to be divided among designated beneficiaries. Trustees are required to "prudently" administer trusts and consider several factors while administering a trust, such as upholding all the requirements of distribution as stipulated in a will or trust, following the terms of the trust and related matters.

Besides heirs, do "interested persons" have rights in Missouri?

In Missouri, a personal representative of an estate is ordinarily nominated in the will and appointed by the court after the testator's death. The court issues letters testamentary to the personal representative, which are the basis for the personal representative's authority to administer the estate. Within 20 days after a person passes away, if no application for letters testamentary is filed by the person who has the right to do so under the probate code, other people can file an application for the same purpose. In such a case, any person who is interested can file a petition with the circuit court's probate division.

Some points to remember while drafting a will -- Part II

Saint Charles, Missouri, residents know that wills form the grounds upon which an effective estate plan is prepared. Some of the critical aspects that an individual needs to address while drafting a will were discussed in an earlier post on this blog. Once issues, such as identifying assets and executors, are settled, the next step is to choose the estate's beneficiaries, who consist of three types: primary, secondary and contingency.

What are the various aspects of estate management?

Estate planning refers to distribution of personal assets after death. A St. Charles, Missouri resident may choose to bequeath assets and estate holdings through a will. A trustee may be appointed to act as a fiduciary for the benefit of the descendants and execute the deceased individual's will.