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Can You mention an organ donation in my will?

Yes, Massachusetts has adopted the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act which says that any person over 18 years old may make a gift of his or her body or any part of their body upon their death to a hospital, physician, surgeon, medical school, etc. This gift can be made by a card, a written form, or by will. The will makes the…

How can a health care proxy be revoked?

There are a few ways that a health care proxy may be revoked.  It can be revoked if one of the following events occur: 1.  If you sign a different health care proxy at a later date, 2.  If you divorce or legally separate your spouse who you had named in your health care proxy as your agent, 3. If you notify…

If a Trust Has an Expiration Date, Can it Be Extended?

There’s a trust, whether it was created by you or someone else, and you want to know if it can be extended so that it doesn’t expire.  It depends entirely on the type of trust and how the trust was drafted. People often think that a trust is a trust; that there’s no difference between one person’s trust and another except for…

What is an Interrorem Clause?

“Interrorem” in Latin means to “put one in fear.”  An “Interrorem Clause” can be inserted into a Will and basically states that if any person provided for in the Will files a Will contest, that person will lose any bequest or benefit provided for them in the Will.  This is often helpful to stop someone from challenging the will, which could result in a…

When does a Will have to go to probate?

Massachusetts General Laws chapter 191, section 13 says  “A person having custody of a will, other than a register of probate, shall, within thirty days after notice of the death of the testator, deliver such will into the probate court having jurisdiction of the probate thereof, or to the executors named in the will, who shall themselves deliver it into such court…

Are there any restrictions on who I can choose to be an executor?

An executor cannot be a minor, convicted felon, or non-United States citizen.  Furthermore, while Massachusetts allows you to name someone who lives in another state to be your executor, you will need to appoint an agent who can act on their behalf.  There is an “Appointment of Agent” form that may be filled out at the probate office.  This requires the non-resident…

Why Over the Counter Formed Wills Suck!

This is a first in a series of posts I will be writing about why fill-in-the-blank legal forms suck. I will be focusing first on over the counter Last Will and Testaments that you can get at any office supply store. I went to one of the big office supply stores and bought a Last Will and Testament form to try out….

Over the Counter Power of Attorney Kit Review

Click here for Part 1: Over the Counter Formed Wills Click here for Part 2: Over the Counter Divorces When I went to waste money buy the first packet – Over the Counter Wills kit – I also picked up a General Power of Attorney kit made by the same people. It cost me about $10.00 and when I opened it just…

What Happens If You Don’t Want to Inherit Anything?

Although it may sound strange that someone would want to turn down an inheritance, there are situations where it may be wise to not accept the inheritance.  It is possible to turn down an inheritance by filing a disclaimer.   A disclaimer is the refusal to accept an inheritance.  The disclaimer must be in writing and submitted to the court that is overseeing the disposition of…

Can You appoint a bank as an executor of an estate?

Sometimes you might not trust any family members or friends to be the executor of your estate.  When this occurs, you have the option of appointing a bank as executor of the estate to make sure that your wishes are fulfilled.  Banks are good executors because they are neutral to the will, they understand the law, and they have experience.  Some banks have trust departments…