The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A
The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A

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What Is The Best Way To Own Real Estate?
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: October 23, 2020

Do you own real estate? Is it your home? A vacation home? Or rental property? It’s important to pay special attention to how you own your real estate. Here we take a look at the different types of real estate and information about the best form of ownership. This is important when you’re thinking about estate planning and asset protection. Your Home Because your primary residence (your homestead) receives special tax treatment, be very careful with how you own your home. In states like Florida, tenancy by the entirety offers married couples creditor protection. This protection is from the creditors of one of the spouses while still preserving relevant tax benefits. It also allows automatic transfer of ownership to the surviving spouse upon the death of the first spouse without court involvement. Transferring…Read More

What Is The Difference Between A Living Will And A Living Trust?
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: July 21, 2020

A Living Will Details The Health Care That You Want If You End Up On Life Support A living will, also called a health care directive, gives you the power to take control over what medical treatment you do or don’t want administered, in the event that you become unconscious or incapacitated. To learn more about health care directives, watch this short video. A Living Trust (also known as a revocable living trust) is created during an individual’s lifetime where a designated person, the trustee, is given responsibility for managing that individual’s assets for the benefit of the eventual beneficiary. A trust is a legal document that you create during your lifetime. Just like a will, a trust spells out your wishes with regard to your assets, your dependents, and your heirs. A…Read More

How Do You Know If You Need A Will Or Trust?
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: May 18, 2020

Do You Need A Will (Last Will And Testament) Or Revocable Living Trust? How Do You Choose? Are you interested in a will or revocable living trust? Wills and trusts are useful estate planning tools. They serve different purposes and can even work really well together. First, let’s go over key differences between wills and trusts. Will Characteristics: A will goes into effect only after you die. It only covers property that is in your name at your death. A will passes through a court process called Probate. The Probate court oversees the will’s administration and ensures the will is valid and that the property gets distributed the way the deceased wanted. Because a will passes through Probate, it’s a public record. A will lets you name a guardian for your minor children.…Read More

What Should You Know About Naming Beneficiaries?
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: April 27, 2020

Do You Have A Beneficiaries In Your Last Will And Testament, Life Insurance And Retirement Accounts? Here Are Some Important Things You Need To Know Beneficiaries Of A Last Will And Testament Have To Wait First, you use a Will (Last Will and Testament) to give assets to your beneficiaries, your beneficiaries don’t inherit automatically. Those beneficiaries will need to wait until the probate court process is over before they can inherit. In some cases, this can take many months or even years. If the estate is complex, the legal fees can deplete that inheritance. If avoiding probate is a top priority, consider a Revocable Living Trust as part of your estate plan. Go here to learn more about wills and trusts. Go here to learn more about avoiding probate. Your Last Will…Read More

How Can You Use Estate Planning To Take Care Of Your Pet?
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: August 27, 2019

If you have a pet, he or she probably feels like part of your family. So it makes sense to take care of your pet if you become incapacitated or pass away. Because if you don’t make any plans, your beloved companion could end up in an animal shelter or worse. The law looks at pets as personal property. So you can’t just name your pet as a beneficiary of your will or trust without some careful planning. Be Careful With Your Will Since you can’t name your pet as a beneficiary, you might consider leaving your pet and money for its care in your will to a trusted person who would be your pet’s new caregiver. But your pet’s new caregiver would not be legally required use the funds properly. In fact,…Read More

Case Update: Jeffrey Epstein’s Estate
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: August 21, 2019

When the wealthy financier, Jeffrey Epstein, died under mysterious circumstances (the Medical Examiner determined that is a suicide, but many people are skeptical), he left behind a huge fortune close to $600 million, along with creditors and lawsuits. Just two days before his death, he signed his Will, which left his estate to his trust, the 1953 Trust. Because that Trust is not filed with the Court, its contents should remain private, barring litigation involving the Trust’s beneficiaries or trustee’s duties. In the Will, Epstein is listed as a resident of the U.S. Virgin Islands. After his death, his Will was filed in the U.S. Virgin Islands, probably because his attorneys thought the probate process would be more private. For regular people who are not rich or famous, privacy is still a huge…Read More

Part 2: The Real Cost Of Not Planning
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: August 7, 2019

This article is part of a series discussing the true costs and consequences of failed estate planning. The series highlights a few of the most common—and costly—planning mistakes we encounter with clients. If the series exposes any potential gaps or weak spots in your plan, meet with us to learn how to do the right thing for the people you love. If you’re like most people, you probably view estate planning as a burdensome necessity—just one more thing to check off of life’s endless “to-do” list. You may shop around and find a lawyer to create planning documents for you, or you might try creating your own DIY plan using online documents. Then, you’ll put those documents into a drawer, mentally check estate planning off your to-do list, and forget about them. The…Read More

More Tips On Creating An Estate Plan That Benefits A Child With Special Needs
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: June 21, 2019

Parents want their children to be taken care of after they die. But children with disabilities have increased financial and care needs, so ensuring their long-term welfare can be tricky. Proper planning is necessary to benefit the child with a disability, including an adult child, as well as assist any siblings who may be left with the care taking responsibility. Special Needs Trusts The best and most comprehensive option to protect a loved one is to set up a special needs trust (also called a supplemental needs trust). These trusts allow beneficiaries to receive inheritances, gifts, lawsuit settlements, or other funds and yet not lose their eligibility for certain government programs, such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The trusts are drafted so that the funds will not be considered to belong…Read More

5 Common Estate Planning Mistakes And How To Avoid Them
  • By: Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.
  • Published: February 13, 2018

Since estate planning involves thinking about death, many people put it off until their senior years, or simply ignore it all together until it becomes too late. This kind of unwillingness to face reality can create a major hardship, expense, and mess for the loved ones and assets you leave behind. While not having any estate plan is the biggest blunder you can make, even those who do create a plan can run into trouble if they don’t understand exactly how estate plans work. Here are some of the most common mistakes people make with estate planning: 1. Not Creating A Will While wills aren’t the ultimate estate planning tool, they are one of the bare minimum requirements. A will lets you designate who will receive your property upon your death, and it…Read More