Meissner, Joseph, Palley & Ruggles

The firm was founded by two attorneys, Robert Fort and Morgan Johnson, on the core belief of providing top notch legal services with reasonable legal fees. While the firm has continued to meet those core beliefs, our lawyers have also added efficiency and client service to our core.

We will provide you top notch legal services with extremely reasonable legal fees, and at the same time provide you with the top shelf client service that our clients have learned to expect; the “white glove” treatment if you will. Additionally, you can expect to receive efficient replies to emails and calls, meetings set on short notice and legal work done when we say it will be done.

Latest from Meissner, Joseph, Palley & Ruggles - Page 2

So this blog is basically covering two topics in one title – What’s wrong with a Willmaker will and ending up in California probate Court!? First I want to be clear there is absolutely nothing inherently wrong with a Willmaker will or a Susan Orman will or a Legal Zoom will or any other such will. If you keep it really simple it should be a fine legal document. Second I want to talk about…
On, or about, October 15, 2020 a new probate was filed for the Chadwick Aaron Boseman estate in Los Angeles Superior Court.  I was talking about this case with a lawyer friend as it is interesting talking about any probates but especially one with a known decedent like a great actor.  As we like to blog about celeb estates on our website I thought I would tell you a little about this probate from a…
I often have clients or potential clients who come to me to discuss when to open probate when their parents, or other loved one’s, house is almost upside down.  That is, what’s enough equity to make it worthwhile to file for probate?  Upside down, or when the mortgage balance is higher than the value of the home, was quite common back from 2009-2013 or so. There were a few cases where we took the upside…
There are different situations that an ancillary probate can be required in California.  I have seen it spelled anciliary, ancillary, anciliary, ansiliary, and a whole bunch of other ways.  The California probate code spells it ANCILLARY so let’s assume that’s correct. Today I want to speak specifically about situations where a California ancillary probate is required even though total assets in California are below the threshold that requires probate which currently $166,250.  How could this…
How E-filing works in California probate courts differs, a lot, from county to county. Some options: Some counties are still 100% paper filing; Some counties are close to 100% E-filing; Some counties say they are E-filing but require paper filing; The point is it’s different throughout the state. It’s changing all the time. For example, just in the past few months Placer and Yolo counties went to E-filing.  Unfortunately implementing a new system when you…
I don’t know if my mom or dad had a will – what do I do?  I have been asked some version of this question countless times over the years. A recent one was something like, “my brother is living in dad’s house, he says dad gave him everything, I don’t know if there is a will, what do I do?”  This can be a simple thing. First step is always determining if there are…
I have had a few cases recently where a person, who has now died, had been the beneficiary of a trust.  However, in all the cases the person who has now died never got their beneficial share from the trust before they died. So what happens?  When does a trust beneficiary require a probate in California? The basic threshold currently is $166,250 to avoid a full probate. So let’s say Mommy Mae dies with a…
If you are reading this page you probably had the question: “How quickly will I receive my California probate court ORDER?” There are many different probate court orders so we will talk about the two most common. Also, every county in California does things differently and in some cases majorly different. As I have a statewide probate practice I keep track of all the counties and all the probate courts so I can expedite things…
You are looking at starting probate without meeting your attorney in person. Can this really be done?  YES!  We do this all the time.  Some simple reasons why this is so: I have clients that live all around the country, and even the world, who lost a loved one in California. Most of my clients want to start probate right away as probate takes a long time so the sooner you start the sooner you’ll…
What can you do when your California probate court date is way out?  By WAY OUT I mean way out in the future.  Let me backtrack a little first…. In the old days, when I was a young attorney, court dates were often given 4 weeks out from the date you filed your petition. Back in the mid-nineties I would file a probate petition and my court date would be about 4, maybe 5, weeks…