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RNN LAW > Blogs

Help! I Owe Property Taxes on Inherited Property!

From time-to-time, clients will contact me because they owe property taxes on property that they did not even know they owned. Almost always, my client’s ownership arises from an inheritance they did not even know existed. Sometimes, the decedent is a fairly distant relative. Sometimes, the decedent is an estranged parent. Sometimes, it was just property that was forgotten over the generations. To many, this may seem like a “first-world” problem, and, to some extent, it is. However, the tax bill is real, the lawsuit is real, and the resulting foreclosure is real. Unfortunately, the value of the property is...

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My Contractor Didnt Pay the Subcontractor!

General contractors often use the money from the current job to pay for the last job. And, the current jobs completion is often tied to the contractors ability to get a future job. If the contractor has a slow month, then it is possible that subcontractors may try to enforce mechanics and materialman liens against the house. And, to many unsuspecting homeowners, these liens are often valid. If a homeowner receives a notice of the intention to enforce a lien against her house, then the homeowner should immediately contact an attorney. Time is of the essence. Further, the Texas Property Code...

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Estate Planning for Blended Families

Blended families are a common occurrence in Frisco, Texas. However, meeting a spouse of a blended family that has their estate planning complete is rather rare. That is a problem because when a spouse dies without a will, and s/he has children from a prior relationship, the laws of the State of Texas are rather cruel to the surviving spouse. For instance, if a husband enters a marriage with two children, never signs a will after becoming remarried, and then dies, his children will own half of the house with their stepmother, as well as one-half of the personal community property...

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Brokerless Real Estate Transactions

Brokerless real estate transactions (BRETs) are becoming more common in the residential real estate market, as well as, the commercial markets. What generally started as a means by which sellers could save on real estate commissions, has grown to include buyers streamlining the buying process and splitting the commission savings with the seller. In addition, buyers and sellers often find one another before the first open house, thus reducing the number of days on market. So, why has the BRET market grown so fast? Sites like Trulia and Zillow are important factors. Sellers are able to list their homes for free...

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Transfer on Death Deeds

In 2015, the Texas Legislature created a vital new estate planning tool, namely, the Transfer on Death Deed. The Transfer on Death Deed will serve an important role in future estate planning needs by lessening, and sometimes removing, the burden of probate. The Transfer on Death Deed is similar to an Enhanced Life Estate Deed, which is sometimes called a Lady Bird Deed. So, exactly what is a transfer on death deed? A transfer on death deed is an instrument that transfers interest in real property from the transferor to beneficiaries named within the deed upon the death of the transferor....

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Security Deposits, Normal Wear and Tear, and Deductions

As a real estate attorney, I often get calls from landlords and tenants about security deposits on move-out. From what I can tell, it is the most disputed aspect of any lease. The following is a typical story. The tenant resides in the premises for a year or two. Upon move-out, the tenant broom-cleans the premises, provides a forwarding address, and requests the security deposit. Somewhere around the thirtieth day following move-out, the tenant receives a letter from the landlord detailing how the security deposit was applied to make certain repairs and clean the premises. Sometimes the landlord returns a...

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Remington Series 700 Recall

I’m going to go a little off my normal topic with this post. Many of my clients and friends are hunters, and there is an important safety recall and voluntary replacement to be made on the Remington 700 series rifles. The guns seem to be capable of firing without pulling the trigger (like closing the chamber on a bolt-action). To be sure, this is different from the April 2014 Remington Series 700 recall dealing with the bonding agent on the triggers. This voluntary recall is for the trigger that has seemingly been used since the 1940’s and affects about 7.85...

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Frisco, Texas November 4, 2014 General Election Results

The General Election for the year 2014 is now over. The votes have been counted. Out of 489,032 registered voters in Collin County, 177,821 ballots were submitted, which is a turnout of 36.36%. Out of 409,334 registered voters in Denton County, 144,732 ballots were submitted, which is a turnout of 35.36%. One of the crazier results took place on US 380 in Denton County. Two propositions would have approved over $150 million in bonds. Two other propositions would have approved assessments of $2.40 per $100 of valuation. The vote ended in a tie ...

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Frisco Elections-November 4, 2014

It's that time of year again, Frisco residents. To prepare for tomorrow's election, I have provided most of the races on which Frisco residents will vote tomorrow. We have a couple of familiar names. George P. Bush is running for Commissioner of the General Land Office. Quanah Parker is running for Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals, Place 4. To be sure, this is an important election. With the exception of judges and representatives, Texas seems to be ushering a new age of leaders. There may be a few of you that have an election not covered by these ballots (depending upon where the precinct lines...

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