Michael Lewis Van Cise’s Answers

Michael Lewis Van Cise

Atlanta Estate Planning Attorney.

Contributor Level 11
  1. Can we probate a copy of a Will that was not filed by administrator over 30 yrs, recent death quick claimed to self & spouse?

    Answered over 4 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    2. Robert W. Hughes Jr.
    2 lawyer answers

    This communication does not create an attorney-client relationship and does not constitute legal advice but is general in nature and for information purposes only. Although I am not sure I fully understand the facts and your question, I'll attempt to respond. First, a will can not be probated until the testator (that is, the person who made the will) dies. If the testator died, there is no "deadline" for filing the will, but it should be filed soon after the testator's death. Georgia law...

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  2. Are back taxes, specifically, federal and/or state eliminated for a surviving spouse that has been awarded year's support in GA?

    Answered about 5 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    2 lawyer answers

    Any information regarding any US federal tax matters contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, as advice for the purpose of (1) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, or (2) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein or in any attachments. Furthermore, this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship. Although the year's support statute on its face purports...

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  3. My mother died without a will, but she wanted everything to be equally divided by her grandchildren. Can that be done

    Answered over 4 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    2. Lisa Glauber Shippel
    3. Anthony James Minko
    3 lawyer answers

    This communication does not create an attorney-client relationship, does not constitute legal advice, and is intended as general information only. When a person dies without a will in Georgia, the disposition of their estate is governed by the laws of descent and distribution (sometimes called the "intestacy laws"). Under Georgia law, if a person dies with no spouse and two children, each child takes 50%. See OCGA section 53-2-1. As Mr. Minko points out, you could accept the property from...

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  4. Can we rent condo out inpsite of HoA rules to contrary?

    Answered over 5 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    1 lawyer answer

    The restrictions and remedies available to you are found in the restrictive covenants of the homeowner's association. If the covenants are not binding on any of the homeowners, you might have an out, but it's likely that everything was properly filed and recorded. You may wish to seek legal counsel to help you explore whether or not the covenants are enforceable. Assuming the covenants are enforceable, you would need to review the HoA agreement to determine what remedies the HoA has against...

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  5. Does a will in Georgia need to be probated if all assets are left to the spouse? What is cost of probating simple will?

    Answered over 4 years ago.

    1. Loraine M. DiSalvo
    2. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    2 lawyer answers

    At minimum, if the person is deceased and was a resident of Georgia at the time of death, the person in possession of the will is required by law to file the will with the probate court. See my legal guide on the Avvo site here: http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/what-to-do-with-a-will-in-your-posession-when-the-testator-dies-filing-not-for-probate In other words, even if probate is not required, you should likely file the will of the decedent with the probate court. Whether probate is...

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  6. What does it mean to probate a will in solemn vs common form?

    Answered almost 5 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    2. Robert W. Hughes Jr.
    2 lawyer answers

    The primary differences between common form probate and solemn form probate are (1) the notice requirements, and (2) the finality of the process. Common Form probate in Georgia does not require notice to anyone: not the people named in the will, not the spouse nor the children of the decedent. Common form probate leaves the will submitted to probate open to challenge for an extended period of time (minimum of four years), however. Solemn form probate requires notice to the "heirs" of the...

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  7. How long after a person dies do you have to file probate in Georgia

    Answered almost 5 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    1 lawyer answer

    Georgia law does not impose any concrete deadlines on filing for probate. Because estate property can not be distributed or even used to pay estate creditors until after the probate process has begun, however, we generally recommend starting the process as soon as the executor/administrator is ready to begin the process. Ideally, within two or three months of the decedent's death. If the estate is subject to federal estate taxes, the federal estate tax return (and any tax owed) is due 9...

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  8. My father died this past december. He had 3 credit cards and no estate how do I let credit cards know there is no $ to pay

    Answered over 5 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    1 lawyer answer

    I recommend notifying the credit card companies and the credit reporting agencies (Experian, Equifax, and Trans Union) of each of your parents deaths. It is my understanding that none of the reporting agencies charge you for notifying them and will send a copy of the decedent's credit report (which may help you identify other creditors). If your parents had no assets whatsoever, you can notify the credit card companies of this fact. Making the notification in writing is probably the best way...

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  9. Two W-2s vs One W-2 – Which one pays more tax?

    Answered over 4 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    1 lawyer answer

    THIS ANSWER IS NOT INTENDED TO GIVE YOU SPECIFIC LEGAL OR TAX ADVICE. You should seek tax and or legal counsel to address the specifics of your situation. Although numerous factors go in to determining the federal income tax liability of a married couple, the brief answer to your question is that the lowest possible tax liability should be the same whether the wages of $90,000 are earned by one spouse or both. This is the case because the wages of both taxpayers are aggregated on the joint...

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  10. Estate inventory detailed

    Answered almost 5 years ago.

    1. Michael Lewis Van Cise
    2. Robert W. Hughes Jr.
    2 lawyer answers

    The statute on this topic is quite vague. Georgia law states in part, "the personal representative shall prepare an inventory of all the property of the decedent." OCGA 53-7-30. As such, the detail required on the inventory is probably in the discretion of the court. I recommend a reasonableness approach. Listing every dish separately is probably too much detail. However, listing "property of decedent - value $300,000.00" is probably too vague. The court should be able to provide you with a...

    1 person marked this answer as helpful