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Monthly Archives: September 2021

Will12

Does A Subsequent Marriage Or Divorce Revoke A Will?

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

When a person makes a last will and testament, that document remains in force until either (1) the person dies and the will is filed for probate or (2) the will is legally revoked. Revocation can be accomplished either through physically destroying the original will or by signing a written document–including a superseding will–that… Read More »

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Is A “Payable On Death” Account A Probate Asset?

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

One way to keep certain assets out of probate is to title them as “payable on death” (POD) to a beneficiary. POD designations are commonly used in connection with bank accounts. For example, let’s say Judith wants to leave her checking account to her son Ryan. Instead of leaving him the account in her… Read More »

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Can A Marital Settlement Agreement Still Be Enforced After A Former Spouse Dies?

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

One of the roles of a personal representative is to enforce any contractual obligations of the deceased. In plainer terms, if someone owed the decedent money under a previously executed contract, the personal representative has the right–and the responsibility–to take any appropriate legal action to collect. Florida Court Orders Woman to Return Ex-Husband’s Pension… Read More »

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Legal20

Florida Court Declines To Find Trust Language “Ambiguous,” Despite Beneficiary’s Protests

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

When interpreting a trust, a Florida court’s goal is to understand and apply the intent of the settlor–the person who made the trust in the first place. A judge will typically not look outside of the plain language of the trust instrument unless there is some ambiguity that requires consideration of extrinsic (outside) evidence…. Read More »

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How Having A Durable Power Of Attorney Can Affect Your Rights In Litigation

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

Under normal circumstances, a Florida power of attorney terminates when the principal becomes legally incapacitated. For example, if you sign a power of attorney giving your sister the power to manage your financial accounts, her authority ceases to exist if you fall into a coma. However, if you have a durable power of attorney,… Read More »

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PetTrust

Can You Actually Leave Your Estate To Your Cat Or Dog?

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

One of the urban legends you often hear about in probate circles is the wealthy person who left their entire fortune to their dog–or maybe their cat. While it sounds ridiculous on its face, there are people who actually believe this is legal. Of course, it is not. While your pet may be like… Read More »

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What Is The Role Of A Guardian Ad Litem In Probate Litigation?

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

In probate litigation, there are often situations where a court will appoint a guardian ad litem (GAL). A GAL is basically an individual who represents the interests of someone who cannot legally speak for themselves, such as a deceased person (i.e., a decedent), a minor, or a living incapacitated adult. A GAL is not… Read More »

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InheritanceLaw

What Is The “Inheritance Tort”?

By Mark R. Manceri, P.A. |

If a will is procured by fraud or duress, a Florida probate court can invalidate the document in whole or in part. But what about a situation where a potential beneficiary claimed it was denied a promised inheritance due to a third party’s fraud or duress? Can that third party be held legally responsible… Read More »

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