NEW YEAR’S PLANNING

NEW YEAR’S PLANNING

By Timothy S. Barkley, Sr. January 2018. With the opening of each year comes a new opportunity to consider your estate plan and make sure it is up-to-date – or to make one if you don’t have on already!  Because we are time-bound mortals, the change of seasons reminds us of changes in our lives and of their fragility. Have you ever drafted documents at all?  If not, you should know that the State’s choices on your behalf are not usually the best...

Read More

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO?

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO?

By Tim Barkley. January 2016. The voice on the lawyer’s phone was generally steady, but shook now and then. “This is Mrs. Jones. My husband just died last week. What do I need to do?” The lawyer offered condolences – even though he had not known the Joneses, he sympathized with a grieving spouse. Mrs. Jones agreed to meet the lawyer in his office the following day. “What do I do now?” she asked. “He didn’t have a will. I’ve heard that the State...

Read More

MYTHS AND MISUNDERSTANDINGS

MYTHS AND MISUNDERSTANDINGS

By Tim Barkley.  December 2014. “If I don’t have a will, the State will get everything when I die!” “I don’t need a will, because everything is going to my spouse!” “If I have a will, my estate doesn’t go through probate!” “I need a living trust, so I can avoid probate! That lady on TV said so!” The author addresses these and similar misunderstandings on a daily basis. Some are alarmist, some induce heedless complacency; all can lead to bad...

Read More

NOW WHAT?

NOW WHAT?

By Tim Barkley. December 2013. The phone rang. The voice on the other end was subdued, but firm. “This is Ricky. You met with Susan and me about our mother. My wife just passed away. She had a heart attack and died at work yesterday. I need to know what to do – she didn’t have a will. Is the State going to take everything?” “I’m so sorry,” the lawyer empathized. “There’s nothing you really need to...

Read More