Articles Tagged with trust

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Stop-Elderly-Abuse-300x300The New York Times recently published an article titled, How Deceptive Campaign Fund-Raising Ensnares Older People. The article has a Huntsville backdrop. The story involves a retired atmospheric scientist at NASA in Huntsville who passed away at age 90. Afterwards, his son Steve began sorting through his papers. That’s when Steve found 400 charges for various political fundraising campaigns. What? The charges were far beyond his father’s financial capabilities. What happened? The truth is that digital operatives use a variety of manipulative tactics to deceive potential donors, often focusing on elderly people.

It’s usually a scheme to exploit the diminished capacity of the elderly. Here is how it works. Some (usually fake) charitable organization targets an elderly person. The organization then bombards the person with calls or letters. The communications seek to scare the person into giving money. It extends far beyond politics.

We previously handled a Will Contest case in Decatur involving just this situation. A couple fake charities targeted the elderly person. These groups were very savvy. They knew his interests. And, they knew how to scare him into giving money.

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Blackwell Law Firm -- Alabama Lawyers For Serious Injury And Damage CasesIs the number of contested Trust and Estate cases increasing? Some Estate lawyers asked that question on their blog. Their post, titled The Rising Tide of Trust and Estate Litigation, is an interesting read. It contains some valuable insight.

Now, I’m no Estate lawyer. I certainly do not write Wills or Trusts. Let me repeat that — I do not write Wills or Trusts. My opinion on that topic is simple — You should seek an expert in Estate planning on those issues.

I focus on trial work — Specifically cases for personal injury and damage. That’s where my experience enters the picture. I have prepared Will and Trust contests by heirs for trial. That is, I have been hired to pursue cases in court where heirs and beneficiaries have been damaged by misconduct. While I do not engage in Estate planning, I do engage in representing heirs and beneficiaries damaged by the wrongful conduct of others. I am one of the few trial lawyers I know in my area who has actually tried a Will contest to a jury.

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Blackwell Law Firm: Helping Damaged Heirs And BeneficiariesA recent blog titled The Rising Tide of Trust and Estate Litigation asks — Are trust and estate disputes on the rise? I don’t know the answer to that question. But, the author provides excellent commentary on the factors which (in his opinion) may be leading to an increasing number of cases.

Before I discuss the post, let me say — I am not an Estate planning lawyer. I don’t write Wills or Trusts. I don’t handle routine probate matters. My practice focuses on trial work. That’s all. That’s where I enter this discussion. I have been hired on multiple occasions to make and prepare claims for trial. Most often, a Trust or Estate lawyer hires me to pursue claims for his/her injured clients. I am typically representing the heir or beneficiary who had their inheritance stolen by someone who took advantage of an elderly relative. We fight to recover the taken (or stolen) proceeds for the rightful heirs.

For me, this is a good time to consider these issues. I just settled an Alabama Will contest lawsuit set for trial next week. Since the case settled so close to trial, we had already prepared. The case involved claims a man unduly influenced his elderly relative with dementia to sign a new Will eliminating other relatives from any inheritance.

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