When you are planning your estate committing your wishes to writing is one thing, but you have to do so in a very concise and explicit manner. This is why no one should feel confident going forward without legal assistance.
One of the things to concern yourself with is the possibility of estate challenges. To give you an idea of how tangled things can become simply think back to the highly publicized case of the model and reality show star Anna Nicole Smith.
As you may recall Smith married an octogenarian billionaire named J. Howard Marshall. Shortly thereafter he passed away. Smith was not named in his will though she contended that Marshall told her verbally that he wanted her to have half of his fortune after he died.
Most people are not going to legally marry someone and then make a point of leaving them out in the cold a year later. This is true of just about anyone, but someone with the kind of money that Marshall had would certainly be able to afford to provide something for Smith without batting an eyelash.
Because of this the case was not open and shut even though Smith was not named in the estate planning documents. A long drawn out court battle resulted that actually continued to rage after the death of both Smith and Marshall’s son E.Pierce Marshall.
To make sure things go smoothly after you pass away you must be crystal clear when you are executing your estate planning documents, especially if you are in any type of an unconventional situation.
If you engage the services of a seasoned, savvy Oklahoma City estate planning lawyer and discuss everything in detail you can be sure there will be no openings for anyone who may want to challenge your wishes and no unwanted drama left in your wake.
Latest posts by Larry Parman, Attorney at Law (see all)
- Clarity is Key to Planning & How Tom Petty Could’ve Done It Better - July 18, 2019
- Why Crowdfunding May Cost You Medicaid Eligibility - July 16, 2019
- Beneficiary Designations, etc., Aren’t a True Substitute for a Trust - July 11, 2019