WHY DO I NEED A LAWYER?

April 2022. “Why do I need a lawyer?  I can just download a will from the Internet.”  The technology has changed, but the question has been around seemingly forever.  Twenty years ago, the will was a “freebie” on tax software, or was included in a software package...

PROBATE AVOIDANCE ON A BUDGET

By Tim Barkley. August 2021. We shook hands and sat down. “Now, if I understood you correctly when you called to set the appointment, you are here to talk about wills.” “Well,” ventured the husband, “wills or trusts – I’m not sure what we need. We hear a lot about...

TO TRUST… OR NOT

By Tim Barkley. July 2021. “Do I need a living trust? I’ve heard a lot about them, and my brother said I need to get one. He has one, and he says it helps avoid probate. What is probate, anyway?” A living trust is a useful tool for many situations, but is not needed...

PROBATE: THE GOOD, THE BAD …

By Tim Barkley. June 2021. Probate. The word has achieved a Dickensian notoriety conjuring up greedy lawyers, helpless widows and children, and unscrupulous creditors. The avoidance of probate is now a cottage industry, carried on in the back offices of lawyers and...

TOO LITTLE, TOO LATE

By Tim Barkley. April 2021. The best-laid schemes of mice and men … The phone rings. “This is Tim Barkley.” “My dad just died and we found his will you drew up. It doesn’t look like he ever signed it. It says ‘DRAFT’ at the top. Can you check and see if he signed it?”...