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Category: Estate Planning

The #1 Mistake People Make With Trusts

Mar 13, 2018
Trusts are wonderful tools for financial planning and estate planning. There are many, many kinds of trusts, each with its own purpose, pros, and cons. Trusts may be used to,...

Should Your Estate Go Through Probate? Why or Why Not?

Oct 9, 2017
Last time we cleared up confusion around probate in South Carolina and looked at what probate is and isn’t. If there’s one thing people do know about probate, it’s that...

Clearing Up Confusion About Probate in South Carolina

Aug 16, 2017
For some people, “probate” is a dirty word. Much of this attitude comes from not understanding the process, so let’s clear up the confusion. What Probate Is and What Probate...

The Statute of Elizabeth: What You Need to Know About Transferring Assets

Jun 29, 2017
What if you owed someone a lot of money, but you didn’t want to pay them back? You might try to put your assets somewhere they couldn’t be touched; for...

Transmutation: When Non-Marital Property Becomes Marital Property

Dec 2, 2016
Consider this: Sandra and James have been married for 25 years. Once they were married, she gave up her job to become a stay-at-home mom. When the kids were old...

Avoid the Pitfalls of Estate Planning in “Brady Bunch Marriages”

Sep 30, 2016
“Brady Bunch marriages” – in which spouses bring their kids from prior relationships into the new marriage – pose a number of potential problems when it comes to estate planning....

The Unintended Consequences of Bad Estate Planning

Apr 20, 2015
We always advise people to get estate planning done. If you don’t decide what will happen to your assets upon your death, the state will decide for you.   But...

What to Know About Estate Taxes for Estate Planning

Mar 16, 2015
An estate tax is levied on an estate of a certain value. Because the tax rate is so high – up to 40% – it’s smart to do what you...

The 5 Essential Estate Planning Documents

Feb 20, 2015
When you come to the Law Office of Gem McDowell to work on your estate plan, we discuss five documents together: a will, a trust, a living will, a healthcare...

Should I Use LegalZoom to Create My Will?

Feb 9, 2015
Should you trust your estate planning documents to DIY legal sites like LegalZoom? Short answer: Probably not. Every person is different. Every family situation is different. And if you have...
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