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December 2017 Archives

Modifications to charitable trusts under the cy pres doctrine

Some Coloradoans want to leave money to benefit the public through charity. This can be done by establishing charitable trusts. These types of vehicles are established in order to help with poverty, to advance education, to benefit health, or for other charitable purposes.

The family home can be a key part of an estate plan

For couples in Colorado who own their own homes, that asset can often be the single largest shared asset in a couple's life. Many couples own their home with joint tenancy with a right of survivorship, which means that either person will become the sole owner of the home in the case that the other party dies. This form of property ownership allows this significant asset to transfer without probate or including the home in the estate, protecting both parties into the future.

Estate tax story shows importance of regular updating

Colorado residents who are creating an estate plan should also make sure they review the documents regularly and update them if necessary. Failing to do this can lead to other problems. For example, a North Dakota congresswoman has talked a great deal about how the federal estate tax hurt her family when her father was killed in a farming accident. However, a closer look at the documents shows that the issue was more one of not updating his will. Furthermore, his family did not take advantage of several opportunities that could have made the tax they had to pay less onerous.

Fiduciaries and digital assets

Colorado is one of a number of states that have enacted a Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act. This allows a person who is the fiduciary for the estate to have some access to the person's digital records and accounts. This is a complicated area that is not yet fully covered legally although this act goes some way toward addressing many issues.

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