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Sacramento Estate Planning Attorney

Posts tagged "Estate Planning"

Supreme Court rulings could impact California same-sex couples

California has been no stranger to the controversy surrounding same-sex marriage and the courts continue to struggle to make sense of the situation. Some much-needed guidance on legal issues related to same-sex marriage may be on the horizon, as the United States Supreme Court convenes this month to decide which of five cases challenging the Defense of Marriage Act it will hear in the coming year.

Sherman Hemsley's body laid to rest after will contest

Blog readers may recall the story of deceased Hollywood sitcom star Sherman Hemsley's estate and the legal challenge from his brother that kept his body above ground for more than three months after his death. Finally, an El Paso, Texas, judge has ruled that Hemsley's will was valid, meaning that Hemsley can finally be buried in accordance with his written wishes.

Voters in California pass Proposition 30 to raise taxes on rich

One of the major differences between President Obama and Mitt Romney was their opinions on how to handle taxation of the middle and upper class. Obama favors an increased tax rate for the wealthiest Americans, and not surprisingly, Democrat-dominated California voted to increase the state tax rate on earners in the higher tax brackets. People earning between $250,000 and $300,000 will now pay 10.3 percent in state income tax. Those earning $1 million and more will now pay 13.3 percent, which is a 3 percent increase.

Same-sex couples may face more estate planning concerns

A recent news article discussed the issues that California same-sex couples may face when it comes to making sure that they and their loved ones are fully protected financially. Same-sex couples can face more difficulties than heterosexual married couples when it comes to filing taxes, collecting insurance, contributing to retirement plans, collecting social security benefits and even going through probate, so LGBT couples need to take additional care when it comes to estate planning.

Deadline for decrease in estate tax exemption approaches

Our readers in the Sacramento area have surely heard about the impending federal estate tax break which is set to expire on Jan. 1, 2013. Anyone concerned about estate planning and avoiding unnecessary taxation should consider acting immediately to take advantage of the expiring estate tax exemption, as it could mean saving a significant amount of money down the line.

Sherman Hemsley's death spurs will contest

California residents may be interested to know that the court battle over the final wishes of Hollywood personality and beloved actor Sherman Hemsley took a rather bizarre twist as a judge ordered a man claiming to be the actor's brother to undergo a DNA test. Hemsley succumbed to lung cancer in July of this year. Currently, his body remains at a funeral home as the dispute over his will continues.

Court holds Marilyn Monroe estate not owed royalties

Sacramento readers may be interested to learn that earlier this month the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals held that the estate of Marilyn Monroe could neither stop the sale of images of the deceased actress nor collect royalties from sales by the Milton Green Archives. Under California law a person who is a legal resident of the state may be entitled to posthumous publicity rights, including the right to control images and likenesses of the deceased. For the California rich and famous, this is one estate planning consideration that could have repercussions for decades after a person's death.

Before giving assets away to avoid gift tax, visit an appraiser

In addressing their estate plans, some California residents have probably heard about the gift tax exemption, which is scheduled to change dramatically at the beginning of 2013 unless Congress takes legislative action. One of the most important aspects of estate planning is asset protection, and for individuals and couples looking to avoid unnecessary taxation, the gift tax exemption is of critical importance.

Jackson family upset over administration of Michael's estate

It probably comes as no surprise to Californians that the controversy over Michael Jackson's estate remains in the headlines. The latest news comes in the form of a statement by the attorney representing Janet Jackson and other family members, alleging that the executor of Jackson's estate has damaged family relationships and created discord amongst family factions that are currently disagreeing about the handling of the estate. Jackson's last will and testament continues to be at the center of the argument, and questions as to its validity have not, and according to the statement, will not, go away.

My Sacramento law practice, Michael A. Sawamura, Attorney at Law, focuses on wills, trusts and estate planning law in addition to business law and corporate defense services. My clients include professionals, government employees, small businesses, blue-collar workers and national corporations.

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