Did you know; that many confuse Powers of Attorney (POA) with wills? Many have come into my office wanting a POA “so they can take care of mom’s, or dad’s, or a sick brother or sister’s matters if they die.” What they did not know and what I explain to them is that the POA dies with the person and is of no effect. Only the will can deal with matters after death. Seek the advice of an attorney to help you with your estate planning.
Many people do not want to be kept alive artificially. They want to die naturally with no life support, but without pain and they want the administration of pain medications. Well, unfortunately many sign form Living Wills that automatically withdraw hydration and nourishment in the directive to the healthcare surrogate. The significance of that is if you are dehydrated it significantly reduces the effectiveness of pain medication. I always counsel against the withdrawal of hydration. Seek the advice of an attorney to help you with your estate planning and healthcare documents.
Did you know; in today’s world with blended families step-heirs are not a sufficient relationship to have a statutory right to inherit from a family member who dies intestate, that is without a will. Many assume that by virtue of living in the same household or just being married that all will go to the spouse and that their children will take as will the biological children. Not so. Many complications occur in a family when one dies unexpectedly and is without a will. Do not let this happen to your family. Seek the advice of an attorney to help you with your estate planning.
If you are married with children in Kentucky and you die without a Will, your spouse will split all of the assets that pass through probate with the children.
For example, if you are married and have two children, your spouse would get 50% of the Probated Assets and each child would receive 25%. See KRS 390.020 (http://www.lrc.ky.gov/statutes/statute.aspx?id=36175). Now, there are certain setoffs available for the surviving spouse (namely a $15,000 spousal exemption, which is also available to children if no spouse survives, see KRS 391.030 (http://www.lrc.ky.gov/statutes/statute.aspx?id=36132), but any business, real property, or personal property held solely in the name of the deceased will be divided between your spouse and your children.
As a kicker, if your children are under the age of 18, your spouse will have to go to court and set up a Guardianship outside of probate so that the Court can oversee your spouse’s use of the children’s portion of the Probated Assets. Each year your spouse will have to provide an updated inventory and ask the Court’s permission to use funds for school, clothes, or whatever else is required to support the needs of the children.
A standard Will can eliminate this issue by bequeathing your spouse all of your assets. Also, it is important to make sure all accounts have properly listed beneficiaries and real property deeded jointly in order to eliminate the mess that is created when a spouse dies without a will (intestate) in Kentucky.
R&R offers flat rate Estate Planning services for many of our clients. We provide prompt, courteous, and efficient solutions for our clients. Please call (502) 423-1600 to schedule your free consultation and flat rate quote (if applicable). Quit putting off what everyone knows that they need, and rest assured that your affairs will be in order if you purchase an R&R Estate Plan.
This is not legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is established by this blog. R&R is conveniently located at 10345 Linn Station Road, Louisville, Kentucky 40223, just minutes off of I-64 and Hurstbourne Parkway. Generally, only one face-to-face office visit is required as we utilize technology to make the process convenient and relaxed as possible.
Yesterday, Kentucky became the thirty-second state to enact legislation allowing Public Benefit Corporations (B-Corps). Famous B-Corps include Ben & Jerry's, Patagonia, and Kickstarter. B-Corps are for-profit companies that are allowed to balance profits and purpose, so long as the shareholders and board approve that purpose. B-Corps are not "non-profit" entities, but B-Corps do provide an avenue for businesses to dedicate profits or business activities to a distinct purpose. Numerous corporations already pledge some of their earnings to charitable organizations, but this is done voluntarily and the commitment may change annually. With B-Corps, the company and its shareholders are dedicated to a purpose or cause, which will likely be attractive in certain industries and to employees, particularly Millennials. As the market for top talent is perpetually tough, this could be a competitive advantage to attract tech-savvy employees.
Existing corporations can become B Corps, so long as the board of directors and the shareholders approve the modification (90% shareholder approval is required). There are certain limitations to the new laws that limit B-Corps, which must be discussed and considered before embarking on the B-Corps path. For additional information, please contact our office at (502) 423-1600 or visit us off the intersection of Hurstbourne Parkway and I-64.
For general information, please visit http://benefitcorp.net/.
J. Brandon Johnson and Sydney Race
The Kentucky Supreme Court has ruled that a business owner, even a sole proprietor, cannot represent the business in a court of law. If you have been sued in a state court in Kentucky, you cannot go to Court on behalf of your company. That places you in the position of practicing law without a license. You must hire an attorney, and a good attorney will help you keep money in your pocket for the following reasons:
1. We know the law. Lawyers’ business is the law. Your business consists of performing a services, producing a good, or selling a product, not providing legal services. Whether you design package handling systems for UPS or making baseball bats, it is impossible to split your focus between your business and a lawsuit. The value of a qualified attorney is immeasurable as you will be able to focus on your business and allow the attorney to focus on the lawsuit. This decision will ultimately keep money in your pocket.
2. We are objective. When you receive a lawsuit or face regulatory challenges, a busy business owner may become upset with the principle of the matter and fail to consider the economics involved. We have witnessed people spend thousands to prosecute a lawsuit worth hundreds. We provide objective counsel on the law and encourage informed and reasoned decisions based upon all the facts in play, particularly the dollars and sense of it all.
3. We help make important business decisions daily. We assist business owners to achieve their goals on a daily basis. Whether in business transactions or litigation, our experience with hundreds of business clients allows us to provide intelligent strategies to achieve business objectives within the law and regulations. Our firm knows both transactions and litigation, and each complements the other; however, we are also comfortable referring our clients to other attorneys to handle matters outside of our wheelhouse.
If you have questions, please feel free to call to discuss at (502) 423-1600 or email at Brandon@rrlaw.net.