Inheritance Rights Attorney in San Diego, California
A lot of people put off estate planning because they believe they are still young or believe they don’t have enough assets. However, without a proper estate plan in place, your family members will be left to deal with the challenges of handling your estate whether you become incapacitated or pass away unexpectedly.
If you don’t decide who receives the property when you pass away, then you won’t have any control over what happens to it. Having a will or creating a trust minimizes the chances of family strife over inheritance rights. The effects of inheritance disputes among family members cannot be understated. Not only can such disputes lead to lengthy and expensive legal battles, but they can also cause irreversible damage to families. If you’re facing an inheritance dispute, it is highly advisable to consult a credible San Diego estate planning attorney to know more about your options.
Why Do I Need an Inheritance Rights Attorney in California?
In addition to what you leave behind in your will or trust, California law may take precedence over some of your wishes regarding who receives your estate. Inheritance laws are complex, and it is important to understand your state’s rules when you create your will or plan your estate. Careful planning will allow you to ensure your assets are passed to the people you intend to receive them.
Losing a loved one is never easy, and disagreements over an inheritance may make things more difficult. Since inheritance disputes can stir up quite a bit of emotion, the parties involved may seek legal advice from a reliable San Diego inheritance rights attorney to help resolve the issues. At Casiano Law Firm, Attorney Vincent Casiano represents San Diego and Southern California clients in contested wills, probate, and trust administration matters. He is an experienced probate litigator with a track record of success in cases involving disputes between family members, contested wills, trust litigation, and other highly contentious estate planning matters.
If you need help resolving your inheritance rights issues in San Diego, you can rely on Vincent to act devotedly and compassionately to safeguard your family’s peace of mind. Call Vinny now and schedule an initial consultation.
Understanding Inheritance Rights in California
Most people assume that their close relatives will inherit only what is left to them in the will. However, inheritance laws are more complex than this and there are some unexpected inheritance rights that you may not anticipate. A knowledgeable San Diego inheritance rights lawyer can help you navigate the California inheritance laws.
In the absence of a valid will, inheritance rights are governed by state intestacy rules. But other state laws may give a surviving spouse and children legal rights to claim an inheritance. Even if they weren’t mentioned in your final will, they might be entitled to this right.
Inheritance Rights of a Surviving Spouse
In most circumstances, a surviving spouse cannot be completely cut out of a will or a trust. The rights of a spouse to inherit depend upon the provisions in the will, the state where they live in, and their willingness to fight for their rights in probate court.
Community Property States
The community property states have their own rules about what spouses own and can claim. The following states fall under this category:
- New Mexico
In a community property state, assets and properties acquired by either spouse during the marriage are jointly owned by both spouses. The employment income earned by either party and property acquired during the marriage using that income are considered marital assets. It also includes the separate property that a spouse brought if it was used by both spouses. Each spouse owns a one-half interest. Each of them has the right to handle their share of community property according to their wishes.
Common Law States
All states that are not community property states are referred to as common law states. In a common law state, the ownership of an estate is determined by whose name is on the title. There is no rule that property acquired during a marriage is owned by both spouses. However, most common law states protect a surviving spouse from complete disinheritance. There are inheritance laws that allow them to claim one-third to one-half of the deceased’s property.
Inheritance Rights of Children
In general, children have no right to inherit anything from their parents. However, in certain limited circumstances, children may be entitled to claim a share of a deceased parent’s estate.
Most states have laws that protect adult and minor children against accidental disinheritance. These laws protect a child from being accidentally omitted from a will. The law presumes that such omissions are unintentional when the child was born after creating the will. The omitted child may inherit a part of the decedent’s estate. If the omission was intentional and the parents wanted to disinherit a child, it should be clearly stated in the estate planning documents.
Inheritance Rights of Unmarried Couples
Estate planning is a must for unmarried couples. If you get sick or die without having the right documents in place, your partner may be unable to make financial and medical decisions for you or inherit your property without the consent of your family.
Unmarried couples who are living together have the option of creating estate planning documents that can help protect their rights as a couple, while at the same time safeguarding their interests and assets. Without it, neither of you will inherit from the other. If you don’t write a will and do not have children, much of what you leave behind will likely go to your parents or siblings, under your state’s intestacy laws.
Another way to make sure that neither of you is left out in the cold after the other dies is to own assets together in joint tenancy with the right of survivorship. When one of you dies, the survivor automatically owns the property. You’ll need to put both of your names on the asset’s official title document.
Call Our Seasoned San Diego Inheritance Rights Attorney Now!
Although you might have a well-prepared estate plan that accounts for all your assets and property, your beneficiaries and heirs might still dispute their inheritance after you pass away. Time is essential when defending your legal rights as a beneficiary, heir, trustee, or personal representative.
Facing inheritance disputes over an estate requires the assistance of an experienced San Diego inheritance rights attorney from Casiano Law Firm who is backed by years of experience in probate litigation and estate administration cases. If you or a loved one is facing legal issues involving inheritance law or estate planning, you can reach out to Attorney Vincent Casiano. He employs a wide range of methods to help promote early settlement where it is possible. However, if a resolution cannot be found, he engages in and manages litigation as pro-actively, efficiently, and cost-effectively as possible to ensure the client’s success at trial. He can provide you with the legal resources you need to minimize estate expenses and maximize the value of the inheritance.
Whether you need to create a will or establish trusts for your assets, he can devise a unique, effective inheritance plan that meets your needs. Contact his estate planning law firm now and schedule an initial consultation.