WHY CAN’T I JUST WRITE MY OWN WILL?

BY ATTORNEY SUSAN I. JEAN I was sitting across the conference table from an older lady (“Clara” for purposes of this Article, not her real name) who has a very simple situation.  She has three children and wants her estate to go to the three of them equally.  Sounds simple, yes? Virginia allows holographic Wills.  These are Wills that are completely …

Medicaid Tip of the Week: Timeshares

BY ATTORNEY SUSAN I. JEAN The saying about boats is: the happiest day of a boat owner’s life is when he or she takes the new boat out on the water.  The second happiest day of a boat owner’s life is when he or she sells the boat.  The same is often true of timeshares.  We buy a timeshare with all …

Thoughts on a cloudy day when spring is in the air

By Susan I. Jean So often we focus on the bad and ignore the good. We’ve (basically) survived another winter; spring is in the air. Daffodils are blooming, trees are just starting to get that spring green we love. Mark Twain, always favorite, perhaps said it best… “It’s spring fever. That is what the name of it is. And when …

Beneficiary Designation Changes to Consider When Beneficiary Predeceases You

By Attorney Robert T. Brooks March 13, 2019 We have all filled out the beneficiary forms for life insurance, bank accounts, etc.  Once you list your beneficiaries you relax because if something happens to you that particular asset will now pass to those you listed.  But what happens if a beneficiary predeceases you?  Would you want that deceased beneficiary’s children …

Virginia Probate: What is a Beneficiary Designation?

By Attorney Jennifer Kahl, February 25, 2019 To put it succinctly, a beneficiary designation is a contractual agreement between you and the custodian of your asset that dictates where your asset will go when you die. Now, let’s take that statement apart piece by piece. The term “beneficiary designation” Most insurance policies and retirement plans use the term “beneficiary designation.” …

Medicaid Tip of the Week: Unclaimed Property

Medicaid Tip of the Week:  Unclaimed Property By Attorney Susan I. Jean on February 14, 2019   We (or our parents and sometimes their parents) may take out life insurance policies over the years.  But it is easy to lose track of these old policies.  Or to get a small refund check, which gets misplaced and never cashed.  Put together, …