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Ypsilanti Michigan Legal Blog

Probate court rules on guardianship of aging couple

One of the comforts towards the end of a long career is knowing that your family will be able to benefit from the fruits of hard work and smart investments. In return, we often expect our younger family will be interested in helping plan or manage our care later in life.

Many people include instructions in their estate planning for how to react to their possible loss of ability to manage financial or business affairs. Documents approved by probate courts in Michigan can appoint conservators, who can act as proxies with personal and business matters. This is a good idea because courts often have to use their own judgment without instructions.

Here’s what most people like about Chapter 7 bankruptcy

If your financial situation continues to worsen, and you're unsure of what to do next, take a step back and learn more about Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

While it's not the right answer to everyone's financial problems, it may be just what you need to regain control of your finances and feel better about the future.

Why an estate plan is important

Although there is no legal requirement to create an estate plan, neglecting to do so can result in a variety of problems. Not only can this impact you while living, but it can also do the same to your loved ones upon your death.

Fortunately, once you understand the benefits of creating an estate plan, you're more likely to do so. Here are five reasons why it's so important:

  • Avoid or plan for probate: If you want your estate to avoid probate, you'll create a trust as opposed to relying solely on a will. In the event that you opt to use a will as your primary estate planning tool, it's critical to name an executor who can see the probate process through from start to finish.
  • Avoid trouble: When you pass on without an estate plan, there's a much greater chance of a fight among your family. You don't want to consider this possibility, so put it to rest with a comprehensive estate plan.
  • Protect minor children: If you have children under the age of 18, you can name a guardian in your estate plan. This person has the legal right to raise your children should you pass on before they reach legal age.
  • Incapacity planning: There is more to an estate plan than determining who gets what upon your death. You can also use it to protect yourself in the event of incapacitation. For instance, if you're unable to make your own medical decisions as the result of a serious illness or injury, it's nice to know that the right person will step in and do so for you.
  • Peace of mind: It's extremely stressful to live without an estate plan, as you'll always have this hanging over your head. Once you have a solid plan in place, it's easier to feel confident about what will happen in the future.

Can you get a mortgage after bankruptcy?

There are many benefits to filing for bankruptcy, such as the ability to eliminate (Chapter 7) or reorganize (Chapter 13) your debt. However, you don't want to proceed until you compare both the pros and cons, as this will allow you to best plan for the future.

Getting a mortgage after bankruptcy may not be easy, but it's not out of the question. The first thing you need to know is that you must let the "waiting period" pass.

Name the right guardian for your children in your estate plan

When estate planning, it's easy to focus so much attention on your assets that you overlook details that are every bit as important. For example, you must name a guardian for any children under the age of 18.

This is a big decision, as this person will be responsible for raising your children should you and their other parent pass on.

Follow these steps to choose the right nursing home

It doesn't matter if you're choosing a nursing home for you or a loved one, it's important to make the right decision the first time around. Any mistake can impact you in a variety of ways, such as the treatment you receive and the money you pay.

When creating an estate plan, pay close attention to all details related to elder law. This includes choosing a nursing home, as well as outlining how you'll pay for your stay.

These 5 things can lead you to consider bankruptcy

If your financial situation takes a turn for the worse, it's critical to list out all the strategies you can employ to get back on track. It's not always easy to dig your way out of a financial hole, but there's never a good time to give up.

Bankruptcy is often the best way to resolve your financial problems. Before you go down this path, pinpoint the cause of your trouble. Here are five things that can lead you toward bankruptcy:

  • Job loss: If you're no longer earning money, it's difficult to stay afloat. The quicker you can get back to work the better chance you have of avoiding bankruptcy.
  • Medical expenses: Your health is one of the most important things in your life, so you shouldn't hesitate to seek medical treatment when necessary. Unfortunately, this can lead to mounting medical debt that's difficult to pay off in a timely manner.
  • Credit card debt: It's easy to fall into the trap of using your credit card to overspend. Before you know it, you could be swimming in more debt than you ever imagined possible, which will impact other areas of your finances.
  • Divorce: If you go through a divorce, it's safe to assume you'll lose some of your assets. You may even find that you're unable to make ends meet.
  • Unexpected expenses: This can include everything from a major home repair to medical bills to the need to help a loved one during a time of trouble.

Estate planning tips for avoiding Michigan probate court

People choose to plan their estates for their own unique reasons. Some people have significant assets and strong desires to see them allocated in specific ways. Other people may want to help their family members avoid estate taxes due to the size of their estate. For others, the primary goal may be avoiding probate court.

Probate court in Michigan will handle any estate where someone dies intestate or without a will. However, there are other circumstances that can result in your estate going to probate court. Familiarizing yourself with common issues can help you avoid those pitfalls in your own estate planning process.

How do you remove a bankruptcy filing from your credit report?

There are many benefits of filing for bankruptcy, as well as a couple of well-noted drawbacks. Among them is the fact that a bankruptcy filing will remain on your credit report for a minimum of seven years.

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy remains on your credit report for 10 years, while a Chapter 13 bankruptcy stays put for seven years.

It may be time to review and alter your estate plan

When you create an estate plan, do so with the idea that you'll have to make changes in the future. This guarantees that you're always on the lookout for any changes that will benefit you and your loved ones.

You have the final say in regard to when you review and alter your estate plan, but here are some times when it makes sense:

  • Divorce or marriage: If your marital status changes, your estate plan shouldn't be too far behind. For example, once you get married, you may want to name your spouse as your only beneficiary.
  • Change in state laws: Don't turn a blind eye to any new state laws, as these can impact your estate plan. Just the same, if you move to another state, you should review your estate plan, as the laws are likely to be different.
  • Something has happened to your executor or trustee: This person is responsible for administering your estate plan upon your death, so it's important to always have the right person named. If you have a falling out with your executor or trustee, it may be time to make a change. The same holds true if this person has become seriously ill or passes away.
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