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Minneapolis Estate Planning and Probate Lawyer Blog

Monday, May 1, 2017

Pet Trusts…Because Fido is Not a Piece of Furniture


Q: How do I provide for my pet’s future care if I die or become disabled first?

Your pet trusts you with its life. She curls up at your feet in the den. He waits at the window-- tail wagging-- eager for your return home.

Have you ever thought about what would happen to your pet if you didn't make it home? Would your pet be protected if death or disability struck you first?

If you consider your pet a member of the family then you should consider a pet trust.


Read more . . .


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Who Owns Your Home?


Betty calls me because her husband, John, recently passed away and she needs help on what she should do now. We meet and I discover that John had a will leaving everything to Betty. Betty explains that their home is jointly owned as they bought it together.

After our meeting, I do further research and discover that Betty's name is NOT on the deed to their home. At the time they bought the home, only John's name was put on the deed.


Read more . . .


Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Don’t Let Your Ex Get Your Money. A Recent Court Decision May Allow Your Ex to Get Your Money!

A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit should cause anyone who has been divorced scrambling to ensure his or her beneficiaries are property listed on life insurance or retirement accounts. Namely, be sure your ex-spouse is NO LONGER listed as a beneficiary.

Read more . . .


Thursday, April 6, 2017

You Inherit A Home, Now What?

When you inherit a house, your primary concern should be figuring out how to secure and maintain the home until you decide what to do with it. Can family or neighbors help? Do you need to install a security system? Can someone stay in the home? Maintaining the home will be important to protect its value.

Read more . . .


Thursday, March 30, 2017

Grandparents Caring for Grandchildren Is On the Rise! Plan to Protect Both in an Emergency.


The number of children living with a grandparent continues to rise. A new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data? shows that 2.9 million children – a 6% increase from 2007 to 2008 – now live with a grandparent. Please take steps to ensure they can help in an emergency.


Read more . . .


Monday, January 30, 2017

Dear Gay Families: Protect Yourselves NOW!

With clear indications that the new administration will go after the rights of LGBTQ families, you must work now to protect your family. Read on to find out how you can do that!


Read more . . .


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

New Year's Resolution, Part II: What To Look For in Your Plan!

The first post in this series discussed the life events that may necessitate revising your estate plan. In this post, I explain what to look for within each specific document to ensure the plan still meets your needs.
Read more . . .


Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Time for the 2017 Resolutions, Part I: Review Your Estate Plan!

Are you tired of the same old New Year’s resolutions? Not inspired by promises to lose weight, start exercising, and eat better? How about an original idea?  Resolve to review and update your estate plan!
Read more . . .


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Is It a Good Idea to Transfer My Home to My Children?

Minneapolis Estate Planning and Probate Lawyer Warns Against Transferring Your Home to Kids

Most people know that probate should be avoided if at all possible. It is an expensive, time-consuming process that exposes your family’s private matters to the public and allows for easy challenges by others. It sounds simple enough to just give your property to your children while you are still alive so that it's not subject to probate upon your death.

This strategy may offer some potential benefits, but those benefits are far outweighed by the risks. With many other probate-avoidance tools available, such as living trusts, it makes sense to review the risks and benefits of transferring title to your property with


Read more . . .


Monday, November 28, 2016

What Trump Means for the LGBT Community, Part 3: Get Your Documents In Order

Minnesota Lawyer Discusses Estate Planning for Married Couples in the Era of Trump.

As noted in my prior posts, the fear of a pending Trump Administration has caused numerous LGBT individuals to call my office asking how to protect themselves and their families.

While, it is unclear what the new administration plans to do regarding LGBT rights, it’s important to plan now to limit any potential stripping of hard-fought rights. I try to be optimistic, but recent appointments have not helped on this point. So, hope for the best and prepare for the worst it is!

When marriage laws passed, many couples decided that marriage was the best estate plan.


Read more . . .


Thursday, November 17, 2016

What Trump Means For the LGBT Community, Part 2: ADOPT YOUR CHILD NOW!

With the looming inevitability of a Trump presidency, I’ve been getting a lot of questions (panicked calls) on how the changing administration may affect LGBT clients. This is the second in a series of posts to cover the legal challenges ahead that I foresee and ways to be proactive in addressing them.  First up. Adoption.
Read more . . .


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From within Hennepin County Unique Estate Law represents clients throughout Minnesota, including Minneapolis, Edina, Bloomington, St. Louis Park, Minnetonka, Plymouth, Wayzata, Maple Grove, St. Paul, and Brooklyn Park.


9.3Chris Tymchuck

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9.3Chris Tymchuck