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February 2012 Archives

Whitney Houston's estate expected to grow as administration begins

In Texas and across the country, estate administration can be challenging when a wealthy person dies. In those instances where the deceased is a celebrity, opportunities may exist for the estate to earn substantial income from the sale of products related to the individual. Nowhere is this more true than with a music icon. We have seen it over the last three years with Michael Jackson, and we may soon see it again with the estate of Whitney Houston.

Estate plan important for disposition of land

Real property purchased by a party during their lifetime often becomes a part of their estate after they pass away. An estate plan created while the person is alive can direct the actions that an estate, through an executor, will take after the person dies. The options for property distribution are varied and can involve trusts or long-term asset distribution to beneficiaries. State laws, including those here in Texas, govern much of the distribution of an estate.

As land values rise, estate planning is essential for farmers

The family farm has long been held as an ideal in the United States. Many states, including Texas, have a large number of family farms and farmers, and estate planning is often an important thing for them to take under consideration. This may be particularly true as of late because of the rapidly rising land values of farms. Over the past few years, farmland values have increased significantly, even while other property has lost equity.

The importance of appointing a trustworthy executor

An executor of an estate has many responsibilities. Not only must they administer the estate of the deceased person, but they also must meet important fiduciary duties. These duties can include, among others, providing an accounting of the assets and debts of the estate in addition to reporting to the court. When an executor fails to meet their duties, beneficiaries can end up in court demanding accountings, or in extreme cases, asking for the removal of the executor.