estate planning Archives

Commercial truck mogul reportedly signed several wills

A 79-year-old man built a lasting legacy with more than 100 commercial truck centers throughout 22 states, including California. W. Marvin Rush, II, was the founder of the largest truck chain on the North American continent. When the stock market closed for the day on a recent Friday, shares for Rush Enterprises were worth nearly $74 million. W. M. Rush, III, the decedent's son, as well as his third wife (his son's stepmother) are fighting over the shares, each referencing wills the decedent is said to have signed.

Don't wait too long to start estate planning process

If you're one of many California residents who do not really like to talk about their own mortality, count yourself among a likely majority. However, when it comes to estate planning, not talking about it can lead to problems for your potential heirs and beneficiaries after you die. Several big-ticket Hollywood stars have passed away in recent years without leaving final wills and testaments.

American space icon's intended heirs request legal guardianship

California baby boomers may be among those who remember watching TV news clips about astronaut Buzz Aldrin and his fellow space team members as they landed on the moon. Aldrin is living out his elder years at this time, which have sadly been negatively affected by a contentious battle with his intended heirs, specifically, one of his sons and his daughter. The two adult children say their father is mentally incapacitated and have therefore petitioned the court to appoint them as legal guardians.  

Glen Campbell's children excluded as his heirs

Fans in California and around the world mourned the loss of country music great Glen Campbell following his courageous battle with Alzheimer's disease. A battle of another kind, however, has arisen after his death. Several of his older children have filed a lawsuit, requesting that the court recognize them as rightful heirs to a portion of their father's estate. 

Daughter of deceased business mogul claims power of attorney

California estate owners and future beneficiaries may want to pay close attention to a particular probate battle as it unfolds in court. The situation involves an adult child of the now-deceased former CEO of Bendix Corporation, William M. Agee, who is fighting her stepmother over her father's estate. The stepmother, Mary Cunningham Agee, claims her husband was no longer in his right mind when he reportedly changed his estate plan weeks before his death to give his daughter power of attorney.

Estate planning and business succession often go hand in hand

It's understandable that California business owners and others who worked long and hard to get their companies off the ground are concerned about the future -- namely, how to protect the legacies they've worked so hard to build. Many prudent business owners also think ahead, knowing there will come a time when they are deceased or no longer able to head their companies due to mental or physical decline. Executing a solid business succession plan ahead of time and working it into an estate plan may be the best means for protecting assets and ensuring the continuation of a business.

Estate planning lessons to be learned from music stars' mistakes

The music and entertainment world in California and around the globe was rocked to its core when several pop superstars suffered untimely deaths. Prince, Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston were central figures in the pop music industry for most of their careers. In addition to remembering them for the international impact they made with their musical talents, many people now mention their names when discussing major estate planning errors to avoid.

Importance of equalization in estate planning and succession

There are many family-run businesses in California and throughout the nation. Astute business owners understand the importance of thorough estate planning, especially when it comes to executing business succession plans. This can be a tricky process because many family-run businesses include several adult children who may not agree on or be capable of managing the company in question.

Wills can help prevent a lot of stress and family discord

Sometimes, California estate owners die and their estates are administered with no obstacles or problems arising throughout the process. Most often, if this is the case, it's because the estate owners took the time to carefully execute solid plans that included wills, powers of attorney and other key documents that can help prevent stress and avoid confusion down the line when the time comes for their assets to be distributed. Those who die with no final will and testament in place automatically cause their estates to become intestate, meaning their loved ones will have to sit back and wait as the probate court determines how assets (and liabilities) should be dispersed.

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