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Category Archives: Estate Law FAQ

Are your affairs in order in the unfortunate event of disability or death?

By Stephen M. Barbas |

As an estate planning and probate lawyer, I am often asked “What legal documents do I need in case of disability or death?”  There are several documents I encourage every single person to have whether single, married or in a domestic partner relationship.  Here are just a couple of the recommended documents every person… Read More »

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Why do I need a Last Will and Testament if I have no property and no assets?

By Stephen M. Barbas |

Because if your estate becomes eligible for assets at any point in time in the future after your death, then the laws regarding intestate estates will apply.  See Answer to question 1 above regarding those Florida statutory sections that define who inherits in an intestate estate.

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What if I’m still legally married to my spouse but we have chosen to separate rather than divorce and I execute a Last Will and Testament wherein I leave all of my property to my son or daughter?

By Stephen M. Barbas |

Spouses have certain legal rights to your property that cannot be assigned away in your Last Will and Testament regardless if you are separated from that spouse or estranged from that spouse.  The length of separation or estrangement does not matter and your spouse would still be entitled to his/her statutory legal rights to… Read More »

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What if I don’t want a specific person in my family to inherit my property?

By Stephen M. Barbas |

The only way to protect your property from not being inherited by a specific family member or relative is to execute a valid Last Will and Testament.  Otherwise, Sections 732.102 and 732.103 will be applied by the Court regardless of your wishes.

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If the court applies one of the above sections, what happens if you have been estranged from a qualified beneficiary?

By Stephen M. Barbas |

Estranged spouses, children, parents, grandparents, and/or any other qualified beneficiary related to the decedent can still inherit under Sections 732.102 and 732.103 regardless of how long the estrangement has lasted.

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What happens to your property if you die without a Last Will and Testament?

By Stephen M. Barbas |

If you die without a Last Will and Testament, your estate will be deemed an “intestate” estate.  The courts will then apply Sections 732.102 and 732.103, Florida Statutes to determine who is a beneficiary of your estate and how much each beneficiary would be allotted out of the estate.

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