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Santa Clara Estate Lawyer, California


Patrick  O'Neil Lawyer

Patrick O'Neil

VERIFIED
Divorce & Family Law, Estate, Wills & Probate, Child Custody, Child Support
Protecting Your Rights: A Strong Advocate In and Out ofCourt

My life’s work led me to here – to act as an advocate in the fight for truth, equality and justice. I am a former newspaper reporter and photograp... (more)

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800-758-9910

John D. Teter Lawyer

John D. Teter

VERIFIED
Tax, Estate Planning, Contract, Real Estate Other

As a lawyer for over 30 years, on a daily basis, John Teter has assisted thousands of clients in achieving their business and personal goals. He draws... (more)

Brian E. Hawes

Corporate, Contract, Employment, Estate Planning
Status:  In Good Standing           

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David A. Patton

Family Law, Construction, Estate Planning, Real Estate
Status:  In Good Standing           
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Kai H. Wessels

Estate, Wills & Probate
Status:  In Good Standing           

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William B. Clayton

Divorce & Family Law, Employment, Estate, Lawsuit & Dispute
Status:  In Good Standing           

Marc L. Shea

Bankruptcy, Corporate, Wills & Probate, Transactions
Status:  In Good Standing           

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Robert A. Froehlich

Wills & Probate, Trusts, Tax, Estate Planning
Status:  In Good Standing           

Daniel E. Hanley

Elder Law, Estate Planning, Landlord-Tenant, Litigation
Status:  In Good Standing           

Michael G Briski

Estate Planning, Family Law, Personal Injury, Real Estate
Status:  In Good Standing           

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LEGAL TERMS

ENTITY

An organization, institution or being that has its own existence for legal or tax purposes. An entity is often an organization with an existence separate from i... (more...)
An organization, institution or being that has its own existence for legal or tax purposes. An entity is often an organization with an existence separate from its individual members--for example, a corporation, partnership, trust, estate or government agency. The entity is treated like a person; it can function legally, be sued, and make decisions through agents.

KINDRED

Under some state's probate codes, all relatives of a deceased person.

BEQUEATH

A legal term sometimes used in wills that means 'leave' -- for example, 'I bequeath my garden tools to my brother-in-law, Buster Jenkins.'

PROBATE COURT

A specialized court or division of a state trial court that considers only cases concerning the distribution of deceased persons' estate. Called 'surrogate cour... (more...)
A specialized court or division of a state trial court that considers only cases concerning the distribution of deceased persons' estate. Called 'surrogate court' in New York and several other states, this court normally examines the authenticity of a will -- or if a person dies intestate, figures out who receives her property under state law. It then oversees a procedure to pay the deceased person's debts and to distribute her assets to the proper inheritors. See probate.

RESIDUARY ESTATE

The property that remains in a deceased person's estate after all specific gifts are made, and all debts, taxes, administrative fees, probate costs, and court c... (more...)
The property that remains in a deceased person's estate after all specific gifts are made, and all debts, taxes, administrative fees, probate costs, and court costs are paid. The residuary estate also includes any gifts under a will that fail or lapse. For example, Connie's will leaves her house and all its furnishings to Andrew, her VW bug to her friend Carl, and the remainder of her property (the residuary estate) to her sister Sara. She doesn't name any alternate beneficiaries. Carl dies before Connie. The VW bug becomes part of the residuary estate and passes to Sara, along with all of Connie's property other than the house and furnishings. Also called the residual estate or residue.

TRUSTEE

The person who manages assets owned by a trust under the terms of the trust document. A trustee's purpose is to safeguard the trust and distribute trust income ... (more...)
The person who manages assets owned by a trust under the terms of the trust document. A trustee's purpose is to safeguard the trust and distribute trust income or principal as directed in the trust document. With a simple probate-avoidance living trust, the person who creates the trust is also the trustee.

AB TRUST

A trust that allows couples to reduce or avoid estate taxes. Each spouse puts his or her property in an AB trust. When the first spouse dies, his or her half of... (more...)
A trust that allows couples to reduce or avoid estate taxes. Each spouse puts his or her property in an AB trust. When the first spouse dies, his or her half of the property goes to the beneficiaries named in the trust -- commonly, the grown children of the couple -- with the crucial condition that the surviving spouse has the right to use the property for life and is entitled to any income it generates. The surviving spouse may even be allowed to spend principal in certain circumstances. When the surviving spouse dies, the property passes to the trust beneficiaries. It is not considered part of the second spouse's estate for estate tax purposes. Using this kind of trust keeps the second spouse's taxable estate half the size it would be if the property were left directly to the spouse. This type of trust is also known as a bypass or credit shelter trust.

BYPASS TRUST

A trust designed to lessen a family's overall estate tax liability. An AB trust is the most popular kind of bypass trust.

PROVING A WILL

Convincing a probate court that a document is truly the deceased person's will. Usually this is a simple formality that the executor or administrator easily sat... (more...)
Convincing a probate court that a document is truly the deceased person's will. Usually this is a simple formality that the executor or administrator easily satisfies by showing that the will was signed and dated by the deceased person in front of two or more witnesses. When the will is holographic -- that is, completely handwritten by the deceased and not witnessed, it is still valid in many states if the executor can produce relatives and friends to testify that the handwriting is that of the deceased.

SAMPLE LEGAL CASES

In re Estate of Young

Stephen Parker, as administrator of the estate of Irma E. Young, deceased (the Estate), filed this petition under Probate Code section 850, subdivision (a), [1] to request an order and judgment establishing the Estate's ownership of certain real property and personal property held by ...

Estate of Kievernagel

In this case we must decide whether a widow has the right to use her late husband's frozen sperm to attempt to conceive a child where her late husband signed an agreement with the company storing the frozen sperm providing that the frozen sperm was to be discarded upon his ...

Estate of Bennett

Claimants Smith Heavy Industrial Transit Corporation and Advanced Development Holdings, Inc. (collectively Smith), appeal from a probate court order granting the motion of petitioners Lu Ella Bennett, Jack H. Bennett, Jr., and Louise Comer to set aside and rescind a ...