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RNN LAW > Blogs (Page 2)

What to Know about Lease Extensions

When preparing a residential lease agreement, most landlords will choose a fixed-term tenancy. Essentially all the residential leases attorneys draft have fixed-terms. However, landlords often get into a situation where the tenant needs two to three extra months before their next residence is ready. Often, landlords are cautious to extend for such a short period … especially if it disrupts the summer leasing schedule. Instead, landlords may decide to choose unique language in extending the lease. Landlords should be cautious, though, about extending residential leases using anything other than a fixed-term tenancy.  So that the landlord can get a better...

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Irrevocable Trust

An irrevocable trust is an instrument created by a person called a settlor and managed by a trustee for the benefit of beneficiaries. In Texas, the same person can hold multiple titles under the trust.  Unlike revocable living trusts, though, the trust is generally irrevocable. Irrevocable trusts are created much less often than revocable living trusts. They are primarily used as creditor protection tools. Other benefits include avoiding probate and the ease of succession to manage property after the settlor dies. Irrevocable trusts do not qualify for the exception to the due on sale clause on mortgages. This means that settlors must...

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Revocable Living Trust

A revocable living trust is an instrument (i) created by a person, the Settlor or Trustor, (ii) managed by a  trustee (iii) for the benefit of the beneficiaries. In Texas, the same person can hold multiple titles under the trust.  Typically, revocable living trusts are revocable during the lifetime of the trustor(s). Revocable living trusts are popular estate planning tools because (i) the trustor retains control over the trust property during his lifetime; and (ii) the beneficiaries avoid the cost of probate after the death of the trustor. Also, revocable living trusts may allow for more effective management of the trust...

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Who gets the kids if both parents die?

It’s the first date night a couple has had in several months. They have one toddler and a newborn at home. During the period of awkward silence that inevitably arises at the thankfully loud Chili’s showing SportsCenter with closed captioning, the wife asks, “What would happen to the kids if we died on the way home?” It is obviously an important question. No one likes to talk about it because the discussion alone could cause it to happen. Also, though, it brings up a whole mess of issues that are not always pleasant. In short, it could very well lead to...

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What happens to my business after I die?

What happens to a business after the owner dies is obviously an important question. The answer will depend on the business’ organizational documents and the business owner’s estate plan. First, it is important to remember that contracts usually trump a person’s last will and testament. Therefore, it a deceased business owner had a partner with whom he maintained a buy/sell agreement, then the buy/sell agreement would most likely control. It is highly recommended for active businesses with multiple owners to either maintain a buy/sell agreement or have a succession plan in regards to management. Next, one must look to see whether...

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Do I Need a New Will if I Move to a New State?

Opportunity increasingly carries Americans to new destinations. Recently, a lot of folks from California and Ohio seem to be making their way to Frisco, Texas. Although many of these new and welcomed Texans make the move for employment related purposes, many are also retirees settling closer to their grandchildren. Whatever the purpose, estate planning attorneys are often asked, “Is my will and trust good in Texas?” Assuming that the will and trust were executed properly, a will and trust from another state will be valid in the new state. However, it’s not always the best route in a new state. For...

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Deadline to Protest Property Taxes – May 31, 2014

Texas residents should have received their assessment of property value earlier this month. The deadline to file the Notice of Protest is generally May 31, 2014. Many Denton County residents property assessments increased quite largely … many by fifteen percent or more. If one feels like the appraisal is too high, then s/he should file a protest. A relatively complete list of reasons to file a protest are outlined below. the market or appraised value of your property the unequal appraisal of your property the inclusion of your property on the appraisal roll any exemptions that may apply to you the qualification for an agricultural or...

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What Happens to the House and Mortgage When Someone Dies?

Attorneys handling estate planning and probate matters are often asked, “What happens to the house and mortgage when someone dies?” To answer that question, one must understand that almost all mortgages and deeds of trust contain a due on sale clause. A due on sale clause is a provision that bans the homeowner(s) from transferring any interest in a property. If a homeowner transfers an interest in the home, then the bank may cause the entire balance of the note to be due at once. If the note remains unpaid, then the lender may foreclose on the property. Obviously, that seems...

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Who Should be Included in Your HIPAA Release?

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is the law that disallows a doctor or hospital from providing a patient’s medical information to a third party without a release. Many people obtain releases during the ordinary course of business, like insurance companies. In addition, HIPAA Releases are usually included in Medical Powers of Attorney. However, should people other than agents under a Medical Power of Attorney be included in a HIPAA Release? A Medical Power of Attorney is usually only executed along with a person’s last will and testament, which is not typically updated very regularly. And, families often move...

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Optional Provisions of Wills and Trusts

Last Wills and Testaments and trusts are obviously separate instruments. However, they are often complementary to one another. One may choose a variety of different options regarding a will and trust. This post will focus on a few of the options that are more popular. 1.            Contingent Trust – Wills distribute property upon the death of the testator. Trusts distribute property under the terms of the trust agreement. Oftentimes, though, a beneficiary of a distribution may be a minor. Alternatively, the beneficiary may be mentally incapable of minding the distribution. In these cases, clients may include a contingent trust. The contingent...

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