Author Archive

Clear-sighted Planning

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I want to share a story of a couple that is approaching the next season of their lives with a refreshingly prudent look at their coming years. When they left our office, I felt inspired and couldn’t help but think that if more adults would look at their aging rationally while they were young enough to really see the road ahead, how much better off so many families would be.

The marketplace is flooded with advertisements for products which claim to ...

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The Neighbor is Herding Your Cats

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I was on vacation a little while ago when I received a call from Orange County Animal Services, notifying me that I had come into possession of four cats. I like cats. But I’m allergic to them. And after that thought, my next thought was, is this a new thing that shelters are trying out, their own version of Publisher’s Clearing House awards? How am I so lucky?

Well, the employee explained to me that a lady had walked into their ...

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A Will or Trust? It’s Not About the Size of Your Estate

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When I use the word “trust” in a consultation, people often quickly tell me that they don’t have enough money or assets to require a trust. This is a common misconception, that a trust requires a vast estate. Perhaps we owe that to the word “trust” conjuring up visions of large philanthropic organizations that operate exclusively out of a trust, or “trust fund babies.”

In fact, a trust can often cost much less in administrative fees, on the back end, to ...

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Effect of Divorce on Your Will, Trust, and Beneficiary Forms

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Posted on: June 19, 2018
By Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.
(Adopted from a 2018 presentation to the National Association of Divorce Professionals)

Are you going through a divorce, or have gone through one recently?

If you’ve ever had the passing thought that your ex-spouse is still named in your will or trust, and cringed, thinking that you have to get that changed before you accidentally hand over your accounts to someone whom you don’t even want to be in the same room ...

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If You Own Out of State Property, Establish a Trust

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If You Own Out of State Property, Establish a Trust
Posted on: March 30, 2018
By Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.

If you own out of state property, it’s almost a certainty that you and your family will be better served by a trust instead of a will.

Why is that?

First, consider that probate is unavoidable with a will. Many of my clients arrive at my office assuming that probate is only for those that are intestate, or without a will. The decedent’s ...

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Stranger Things from Beyond the Courthouse

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Stranger Things from Beyond the Courthouse
Posted on: March 6, 2018
By Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.

The following Is based on a presentation I gave in January to a group of local professionals. I decided to call it Stranger Things, because some things I’ve seen in my career really are stranger than fiction!

Recent surveys from Caring.com show ...

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What’s in Your Mailbox?

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What’s in Your Mailbox?
Posted on: February 15, 2018
By Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.

Every month, you probably receive dozens of solicitations. Some of them can look very official and urgent.

For example, one of our clients received this piece of mail and was left wondering if obtaining a Certificate of Status from the State of Florida was a step he’d overlooked in registering his LLC.

Not at all!

This notice from Florida Certificate Services reads, “Congratulations on registering your business with the State ...

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Your Client Has Been Named Trustee; Does He Really Need An Estate Attorney?

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Your Client Has Been Named Trustee; Does He Really Need An Estate Attorney?
Posted on: February 6, 2018
By Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.

A client recently terminated me as his attorney of his mother’s trust. I found it interesting that his decision came the day after he met with his financial advisor. Perhaps it was a total coincidence! After all, it is difficult for me to believe that a client would have been given advice from another professional that is likely to ...

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Preparing for the Next Hurricane Irma

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Preparing for the Next Hurricane Irma
Posted on: September 27th, 2017
By Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.

Houston under water.  Puerto Rico destroyed. Central Florida battered.  Natural disasters such as Hurricane Irma can be a sobering experience. Many clients and friends walked away from their Florida homes, prepared to lose everything. Most of us in Central Florida were very lucky and have our power back. The grocery store aisles are almost full again. The curbs still are littered with tree branches ...

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The Florida Electronic Wills Act

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The Florida Electronic Wills Act
Posted on: June 2nd, 2017
Hallie L. Zobel, Esq.

It’s wonderful to live in the 21st century, where Amazon orders often arrive less than 24 hours after being placed, even on Sundays. Movies are on demand, and the internet allows us to manage banking and all else without ever needing to leave the house. And when I do leave the house, I wonder how I ever found my way to an appointment without my ...

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