Donald B. Lawrence Jr.’s Answers

Donald B. Lawrence Jr.

Lansing Estate Planning Attorney.

Contributor Level 13
  1. Does a Trust protect unemcumbered real estate?

    Answered about 2 years ago.

    1. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    2. Ezra N. Goldman
    3. Joseph Franklin Pippen Jr.
    3 lawyer answers

    Since you are located in Grand Rapids my answer assumes that the settlor of the trust and potentially the property of the trust are located in Michigan. Essentially you are asking if the mortgage holder can reach not only assets owned in the name of the individual borrower but can the lender reach the assets owned by the borrower which are titled in the name of that same individual who is the trustee of the trust in which the title to these properties are held. The mortgage holder can...

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  2. Is a gift to an irrevocable trust a "gift" for tax purposes?

    Answered about 2 years ago.

    1. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    2. Gary Ford Allen
    3. Steven J. Fromm
    3 lawyer answers

    The $13K is a gift that is within the annual exclusion and if a spouse joins with you in the gift, it can be increased to $26K. Giving it to an irrevocable trust will effectively transfer it to the grandchild for later delivery and will remove it from your estate. Any income generated on this money gift will be taxable to the child whether distributed immediately or not. Depending on the age of the grandchild and your life expectancy, you probably want to provide for distribution to the...

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  3. Would putting my house in a trust protect me from someone putting a Lein on it and can I put it in a trust if I already have one

    Answered 5 months ago.

    1. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    2. Peter L. Conway
    3. Kurt A. O'Keefe
    4. Michael Leo Potter
    5. Nathaniel H. Herdt
    6. ···
    6 lawyer answers

    By itself, putting title to a home will not prevent someone entitled under the law to file a lien to not do so. Whether you can go into bankruptcy and keep your home is a complicated question depending on the facts. If you are behind on your mortgage and cannot cure the default through a Chapter 13 plan, you may lose your home. Depending on the amount of equity that you have in your home and the exemptions that you choose (under state law or federal law, you may be able to reaffirm on the...

    13 lawyers agreed with this answer

  4. My wife is hospitalized in a permanent vegetative state. We live in Battle Creek, MI. Do I need a guardianship or conservative ?

    Answered about 2 years ago.

    1. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    2. Peter L. Conway
    3. Douglas R Holbrook
    3 lawyer answers

    I agree with Mr. Conways answer. Your question addressed financial issues and you will have to file a petition with the Probate Court in the county of her residence seeking to be appointed as her conservator so that you will have the authority to handle her assets. Since there is no general grant of discretion, you may also want to seek specific authority if you think that it is best to liquidate assets such as her real estate. You will definitely need assistance of an attorney for this and...

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  5. Does Michigan have a law for Interested parties to be allowed to remain in a home from deceased parent.

    Answered almost 2 years ago.

    1. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    2. Julie Aletta Paquette
    3. James P. Frederick
    4. Peter L. Conway
    5. Benjamin Thomas Vader
    5 lawyer answers

    Based on what you have said, you should be able, in your capacity as personal representative of your mother's estate, to file an eviction action in state district court. You would be foolish to do this without counsel unless you have significant experience in this area. You need to consult and retain counsel if you want to resolve this matter. Bring the deed, your letters of authority as personal representative of the estate and any other related documentation that you have to the meeting...

    11 lawyers agreed with this answer

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  6. Michigan is A will supposed to be filed with the County Clerk within 30 days of someone dying.- if so why

    Answered about 2 years ago.

    1. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    2. Julie Aletta Paquette
    3. James P. Frederick
    4. Michael Leo Potter
    4 lawyer answers

    Michigan law requires that a person having custody (possession) of a will of a decedent is to file the will with the probate court in which the decedent resided "with reasonable promptness after the death of the testator" (the maker) of the will. A person who willfully fails to do so may be found guilty of contempt and subject to penalty for contempt. The reason for this is that a will, once proven to be authentic, is the basis on which the estate of the decedent is distributed. You are...

    11 lawyers agreed with this answer

  7. My sister received conservatorship ruling over my dad but she has passed away.

    Answered 8 months ago.

    1. Timothy J. Klisz
    2. John P. Tamboer
    3. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    4. Christopher Allyn Sevick
    5. David B. Carter Jr.
    6. ···
    6 lawyer answers

    Contact the attorney that represented your sister or hire an attorney to represent you. File a petition with the Court that set up the conservatorship and indicate that your sister has passed and that you are an appropriate candidate to serve as Conservator and ask to be appointed. You have not indicated when the year period will be up but if it is a short time, make extraordinary efforts to get this done within the time frame or ask the Court to extend the time period or both. Once you are...

    10 lawyers agreed with this answer

  8. Division of assets in will

    Answered 8 months ago.

    1. James P. Frederick
    2. Peter L. Conway
    3. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    4. Ivette M Santaella
    5. Richard D. Granvold
    6. ···
    8 lawyer answers

    Your disclaimer of an inheritance will definitely be construed as a basis to deny your discharge in bankruptcy. I am not clear on what your share of the estate might be but it may be possible to claim the share as exempt if you file. Depending on what other assets you have and want to claim as exempt, you may be able to protect your inheritance and be able to transfer it to your father after the bankruptcy if that is what you want to do. You definitely need to consult with a knowledgeable...

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  9. Trust and pour over will being notorized.

    Answered almost 3 years ago.

    1. James P. Frederick
    2. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    3. Peter L. Conway
    3 lawyer answers

    I agree with the prior answer. The question states "In Michigan, when you make a trust, a pour over will are connected." This is true if you mean that the pour over will directs that any probate assets, after the payment of debts, be paid over to the trust. They are two separate documents. They should not be "connected" in the sense of being joined into one document because one of the advantages of a trust is that the assets in the trust are not disclosed in a public record whereas when...

    10 lawyers agreed with this answer

  10. How can my mom sell her house without Medicaid taking the money, since Dad is in a nursing home?

    Answered over 1 year ago.

    1. Robert D. Mannor
    2. Donald B. Lawrence Jr.
    3. Lawrence A Friedman
    4. David B. Carter Jr.
    5. Vance Tate Davis
    5 lawyer answers

    I agree with the prior answer, particularly that you need to talk with an elder law attorney. I don't know anything about the health of your parents or any of your or their circumstances other than that she want to move and you expect that the net received will be In $10,000.00 or less. In giving advice, it is always critical that an attorney have the opportunity to ask questions and to explore all aspects of the situation. For example, if you or your sister wanted to reside in the house,...

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