Meisser, Joseph, & Palley Inc.

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I saw this headline today and here’s a link to the article in Aretha’s hometown paper. The reality is it’s not shocking to have three wills and even three handwritten wills. This happens as people change their mind from time to time and/or in some cases handwritten documents might be wills. For a lawyer helping his client carry out their fiduciary duty it’s best to file all potential “wills” with the court and then let…
Ok, I admit it I just wanted to put “Game of Thrones” in my blog to see a spike in readership. I am sorry. It’s like the old days when we talked about Star Wars. Here’s the strange thing though, and this has absolutely nothing to do with California probate law, I have never watched GOT. I do not even know what it’s about. Strange I know. I wake up Monday morning, go to the…
I am excited to announce that I have been invited to speak on California probate law and how to improve your trusts. This will be April 18, 2019 in Sacramento AND online! Here is a link to the Facebook page. Probate & Real Estate Workshop.2019 The post John Palley speaking on probate and estate law April 18th in Sacramento appeared first on Probate Sacramento CA | Trusted Probate and Estate Attorney.…
As a probate attorney since 1994 I have prepared and file a lot of Spousal Property Petitions over the years. The main form is state form DE-121 which you can find here on the web. I think a lot of people gloss over the many nuances in these cases and thus I wanted to talk about things that can come up in these cases. I say this because I think a lot of people have…
I spoke recently to a potential new client who lives in the great state of Texas. Her daughter died here in California, with assets exceeding $150,000, and thus she needs to start a probate. This is the type of case I specialize in. I deal with dozens of such cases each year where my client lives somewhere outside of California but they lost a loved one here in the golden state. I explained that I…
Dealing with well over 1,000 probate cases in my 25 years as a probate attorney I have been asked “Can I change the locks on [mom/dad/grandma/grandpa/etc] house now that they are dead?” The stories are different, and though often unlawfully, there are people in living in mom’s house. This may be a squatter, this may be a tenant, this may be a relative, this may be a caretaker. It may be someone who was “taking…
Today is Monday February 25, 2019. We had a probate hearing on calendar in a county in California. I am not trying to throw any specific Court under the bus so let’s just say a county somewhere south of Oregon and north of the Mexican border. We had taken over the probate from another attorney who didn’t do probate work and they had failed to file the proof of service of notice. Anyway, the new…
As a probate attorney for 25 years I have dealt with countless ancillary probates in my personal practice. These typically involve a person who has property in two, or more, US states. However, on occasion we run into international probate situations. That might be a citizen of the world who dies owning property in California or a California resident who dies owning property around the world somewhere. As background California Probate Code section 12501 defines…
I got my court’s calendar notes today for my recently filed Heggstad petition where the decedent had done a Suze Orman trust. Different counties call them different things – calendar notes, tentative ruling, etc… but basically it’s the Court’s preliminary thoughts on the case after reviewing what has been filed. It says: Settlor executed a pour-over will, property is specifically distributed in trust.No general transfer or assignment/property is titled in decedent’s name.For court review. Now…
I got a new case recently where the person who died had a Suze Orman will and trust. Let’s just say, in legal terms, it’s all messed up! Before I go on let me make clear that Suze has a well deserved reputation as a financial guru. She has helped millions of people get their financial houses in order and that’s great.  However, to quote LaVar Ball, “stay in yo’ lane.”  Or as I have…