Hunt & Associates P.C.

Aug 3, 2017

Estate Planning Issues for Married Couples

Elderly coupleAmong the more common estate plans for married couples is what is sometimes referred to as a sweetheart estate plan.  Such a plan provides for the entirety of the deceased spouse’s estate to pass to the surviving spouse; on the death of the surviving spouse, whatever remains will pass to the couple’s children or other designated heirs.  Mutual reciprocal wills can be used to accomplish this intent.  Of course, on the death of the surviving … Read more

Feb 27, 2017

Executor of Estate Found Personally Liable to IRS for Decedent’s Unpaid Taxes

Gold dollar signsBenjamin Franklin once observed “in this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”  For those who doubt Franklin’s sagacity in that regard, consider the recent case of Marci McNicol.  A federal court found her personally liable to the Internal Revenue Services to the tune of $125,000.00 with respect to taxes owed by her late husband.  Here’s what happened.

On his death, in addition to their four minor children, McNicol’s husband … Read more

Feb 14, 2017

What Happens When Dad Gives Your Inheritance to His New Girlfriend?

InheritanceMost folks will acknowledge that an adult of sound mind is free to give his money and property to whomever he pleases, both during his lifetime and after death, as directed by his estate plan.  Such an acknowledgement, however, is subject to qualification, particularly when the soundness of the giver’s mind is called into question.  This can arise in a variety of scenarios, often when the giver makes someone new the object of his affections … Read more

Feb 7, 2017

Will the Federal Estate Tax Be Repealed this Year? If So, Will Anyone Notice?

House of RepresentativesCompanion bills have been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives and in the Senate to repeal the federal estate tax.  On January 24, 2017, Representative Noem introduced H.R. 631 which was referred to the House’s Ways and Means Committee for consideration.   The same day, Senator Thune introduced comparable legislation in the Senate.  If enacted by Congress and signed by President Trump, no federal estate tax would be assessed against estates of decedents dying thereafter.… Read more

Jan 6, 2017

Oregon Court Says “No” to DHS’ Medicaid Rule Change

Supreme Court - 010617In a long-awaited decision, the Oregon Supreme Court has struck down Medicaid repayment rules issued by the Department of Human Services in 2008.  The court ruled that DHS did not have the legal authority to issue rules which would allow it to recover Medicaid payments from assets a Medicaid recipient transferred to his or her spouse up to five years prior to applying for Medicaid.  The decision upholds a 2014 ruling from a lower court … Read more

Nov 3, 2016

To Sue Yourself as Others Sue You

BarristerAn appellate court in Utah recently ruled that a woman appointed personal representative of her deceased husband’s estate could sue herself on behalf of her husband’s sole heir, herself, for negligently causing the motor vehicle accident that caused her husband’s death.  The ABA Journal story is here.

The appellate decision is wholly insensitive to the absurdity of its conclusion.  Of course, the purpose of such litigation where the only interested participants are me, myself … Read more

Oct 5, 2016

Charlie Ford to Speak at Another Local CLE

ClassroomCharlie Ford is scheduled be a speaker at a CLE entitled “Estate Administration from Start to Finish“. The CLE is scheduled to take place on Wednesday December 21, 2016 all day beginning at 8:00 AM at the Portland Airport Radisson Hotel which is located at 6233 NE 78th Court in Portland, Oregon. He will be specifically discussing marshalling assets and distributing/closing estates. Sign up for the class using the link above to check … Read more

Jan 15, 2016

Estate Planning: “Harmless Error Rule” Now Applies to Wills in Oregon

Effective January 1, Oregon law adopted what has been called the “harmless error rule” regarding the execution of wills. By virtue of a newly effective statute, a writing that formerly would not have been considered a valid will because it was not executed in accordance with the law’s requirement, might now qualify as a valid will under Oregon law. To understand how this new statute changes things, we first need to look at the formalities … Read more

Mar 19, 2014

The Oregon Probate Process: Getting Started

In my estate planning practice and in my estate administration practice I am asked the same questions: “What is probate?” and, “Why does it have to take so long?”

Usually when people tell me they want to avoid probate, they mean that they want to avoid having their estate administered through a court process, whether or not the person has a will.  The exact definition of probate is not that important.  Essentially, the administration of … Read more