Birmingham Estate Planning Lawyer, Alabama

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Ferris S. Ritchey Lawyer

Ferris S. Ritchey

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Estate, Estate Planning, Wills & Probate, Mediation, Elder Law

Ferris Ritchey has over 35 years of experience in a wide range of legal matters with an emphasis on Domestic Relations, Mediation, Collaborative, Prob... (more)

Lorrie Maples Parker

Commercial Real Estate, Estate Planning, Contract, Business Organization
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V. Michelle Obradovic

Corporate, Business Organization, Elder Law, Estate Planning
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Shay N. Click

Collection, Estate Planning, Family Law, Municipal
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Brett Harrison Hollett

Landlord-Tenant, Litigation, Estate Planning, DUI-DWI, Criminal
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  17 Years

Anne Lamkin Durward

Farms, Estate Planning, Divorce, Adoption
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Stephen W. Shaw

Mass Torts, Estate Planning, Employment Discrimination, Divorce, Criminal
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  44 Years

John N. Hester

Estate Administration, Estate Planning, DUI-DWI, Criminal
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  39 Years

Preston Hunter Neel

Commercial Real Estate, Wills, Gift Taxation, Credit & Debt
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  16 Years

Marilyn H. Macey

Military & Veterans Appeals, Social Security -- Disability, Social Security, Estate Planning
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  33 Years

Free Help: Use This Form or Call 800-943-8690

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LEGAL TERMS

GRANTOR

Someone who creates a trust. Also called a trustor or settlor.

TESTAMENTARY TRUST

A trust created by a will, effective only upon the death of the willmaker.

INCOMPETENCE

The inability, as determined by a court, to handle one's own personal or financial affairs. A court may declare that a person is incompetent after a hearing at ... (more...)
The inability, as determined by a court, to handle one's own personal or financial affairs. A court may declare that a person is incompetent after a hearing at which the person is present and/or represented by an attorney. A finding of incompetence may lead to the appointment of a conservator to manage the person's affairs. Also known as 'incompetency.'

SWEARING MATCH

A case that turns on the word of one witness versus another. The outcome of a swearing match usually depends on whom the jury finds most trustworthy.

DEVISEE

A person or entity who inherits real estate under the terms of a will.

DOWER AND CURTESY

A surviving spouse's right to receive a set portion of the deceased spouse's estate -- usually one-third to one-half. Dower (not to be confused with a 'dowry') ... (more...)
A surviving spouse's right to receive a set portion of the deceased spouse's estate -- usually one-third to one-half. Dower (not to be confused with a 'dowry') refers to the portion to which a surviving wife is entitled, while curtesy refers to what a man may claim. Until recently, these amounts differed in a number of states. However, because discrimination on the basis of sex is now illegal in most cases, most states have abolished dower and curtesy and generally provide the same benefits regardless of sex -- and this amount is often known simply as the statutory share. Under certain circumstances, a living spouse may not be able to sell or convey property that is subject to the other spouse's dower and curtesy or statutory share rights.

DEATH TAXES

Taxes levied at death, based on the value of property left behind. Federal death taxes are called estate taxes. Some states levy inheritance taxes on people who... (more...)
Taxes levied at death, based on the value of property left behind. Federal death taxes are called estate taxes. Some states levy inheritance taxes on people who inherit property.

SPECIFIC BEQUEST

A specific item of property that is left to a named beneficiary under a will. If the person who made the will no longer owns the property when he dies, the bequ... (more...)
A specific item of property that is left to a named beneficiary under a will. If the person who made the will no longer owns the property when he dies, the bequest fails. In other words, the beneficiary cannot substitute a similar item in the estate. Example: If John leaves his 1954 Mercedes to Patti, and when John dies the 1954 Mercedes is long gone, Patti doesn't receive John's current car or the cash equivalent of the Mercedes. See ademption.

ADMINISTRATRIX

An outdated term for a female administrator -- the person appointed by a court to handle probate on behalf of someone who died without a will. Now, whether male... (more...)
An outdated term for a female administrator -- the person appointed by a court to handle probate on behalf of someone who died without a will. Now, whether male or female, this person is called the administrator.

SAMPLE LEGAL CASES

Maloof v. John Hancock Life Ins. Co.

... "The reason that these policies were even being discussed was because we were talking about estate planning and we got into a discussion of — of estate taxes and things like that. ... The whole purpose of the policies was to take care of estate planning. ...

ROTHFEDER v. KAUFMAN GILPIN McKENZIE THOMAS

... In February 2003, Rothfeder met with Derek Warren, an accountant practicing in Geneva, Alabama, to discuss the referral of one of Warren's clients, Ruth K. Baucom, to the firm for assistance with tax and estate-planning matters. ...

DeFriece v. McCorquodale

... Seeking to minimize that tax burden, the family consulted an estate-planning attorney who recommended, first, that DeFriece, Durst, Ernest Jr., their 467 respective children, and Nell disclaim their rights to receive real property under Ernest Sr.'s will, and, second, that DeFriece ...

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