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David Preston Crandall
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David Crandall’s Answers

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  • KS state estate law, beneficiairies to life insurance funds

    There is a elderly lady that just passed away yesterday she has a couple of insurance policy's that are in her deceased son's name, she does having living adult children and also her husband is deceased as well. They have no money without these p...

    David’s Answer

    In Kansas, insurance proceeds payable to a beneficiary who has died before the death of the insured are payable to the insured's estate. This requires the opening of a probate estate, and the disposition of the proceeds will be governed by the insured's will, if any. You must hire an attorney to open a probate estate in Kansas.

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  • I have one daughter and she"s listed as POD on all my assets. Do I still need a will?H

    I have one child and I have her name on all my assets and accounts. She's listed as POD on everything. Do I still need a will?

    David’s Answer

    As Jonathan pointed out, your daughter could die -- then what?

    But that is just the tip of the iceberg. There are two different kinds of joint ownership, Tenants in Common (assets do not pass to the survivor) and Joint Tenancy (assets pass to the survivor). If you don't use the correct legal language, you wind up with Tenants in Common, which is the legal default.

    Furthermore, what happens if your daughter is sued (e.g. car accident)? She has some ownership on all your assets, so your assets could be taken by the judgment creditor to satisfy that lawsuit.

    If your daughter is married, what happens if she gets divorced? Since she has some ownership interest in all your assets, part of your assets could go to her ex-spouse.

    POD is a very poor way to do estate planning, and a will is little better. If you wish to provide protection for your family from these things I've listed, you need a trust.

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  • Is life isurance included in an estate in missouri were there is no will

    I am the beneficiary and my father did not have a will, is it included

    David’s Answer

    That depends on what you mean by "included in an estate". If you are the named beneficiary on the life insurance policy, then the money passes to you directly (which is outside the probate estate). No will is needed in order to claim the insurance proceeds, and no probate needs to be opened to claim the life insurance. HOWEVER, life insurance IS included in the "estate" for determining liability under federal estate tax law. Whether there will be tax liability depends on the size of the entire "estate" (everything your father had any ownership interest in at his death) and the year he died. You should consult an attorney to determine your estate tax liability.

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