A Spendthrift Trust is a legal framework that protects the assets within a trust from a potentially irresponsible beneficiary who might harm the trust by overspending or squandering the assets. The spendthrift trust also protects the trust and its assets from creditors of the beneficiary. The creditors are not able to seize the assets of […]

When choosing someone to choose an executor, guardian, or trustee of your will, be sure to choose a fiduciary. Many advisors can handle the basic guidelines of your will or trust, but not all of those are fiduciaries. The difference is that a fiduciary makes financial or other decisions for you, while a financial advisor […]

“A loved one just passed away. Do I need to open a probate estate?” At Charles D. Stark, we hear this question often. In most cases, the answer is yes – an estate gives you greater control over your loved one’s assets. Sometimes, though, you do not need to open an estate. Probate is a […]

A power of attorney or POA is a legal document. It gives someone else your legal rights to make decisions on your behalf. The decisions can vary, and a POA can be as specific or general as you would like. The person who is giving this power away is called the “principal.” The person receiving […]

A Will contest is a legal claim that there is some reason that a will is legally invalid. These lawsuits are often brought by family members who are left out of Wills or feel that they did not get as much as they should have from a will. At its core, a Will contest challenges […]

Have you ever considered writing a will, but wondered if you are too young to need one? You are not alone – many people think they can put off writing a will until they are older. Unfortunately, none of us knows how long we will live, and the end sometimes comes before we have a […]

A conservator is a responsible person appointed by the court to take care of another adult, the conservatee, who is unable to care for themselves or make their own financial decisions. California law controls who can be a conservator and under what circumstances the court will find an adult needs a conservatorship. Who Can Petition […]

When you pass away, your family must address any outstanding debts that you have at the time of your passing. If you do not leave instructions in your will, your assets will simply be sold to address these debts. Anything left over will be distributed to your family based on the laws in California. If […]

COVID-19 changed nearly every aspect of life in the United States. To protect their families, people changed the way they work, shop, and interact with others. The pandemic also changed the way we view our own mortality: death is an unavoidable reality and can come at any stage in life. As the result of this […]

Breach of Fiduciary Duty in California Breach of fiduciary duty is a serious violation of trust; it is also against the law. Division 9, Part 4 of California’s Probate Code assigns specific duties to trustees, also known as fiduciaries. The major responsibilities of a fiduciary include: Administering the trust in accordance with the trust instrument, […]

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