Probate and Successions
Baton Rouge Estate Planning & Probate Attorney
Handling a Wide Range of Probate & Succession Matters
for Clients Throughout Louisiana
Wherever you are in life, it is never too early to create an estate plan. If you have children, are just starting a family, are nearing retirement, or trying to help a loved one get their affairs in order, seeing an attorney may be a good decision to help guide you in the estate planning process. Additionally, if you are in charge of administering an estate after the death of a loved one, it is just as important to have an experienced lawyer to help you through the succession process.
We provide a number of services to our clients including:
Working to meet the client's specific needs
Many clients we work with are unaware of the steps that are necessary after the death of a loved one. One of the most important parts of the process is to determine if their loved one had a valid will in place. Once we know their loved one's wishes, we will help our clients efficiently distribute the property according to the will. Without a will we can assist in transferring properties according to the succession laws of the state.
We work collaboratively with our clients to help them through the succession process. We know that this is a difficult time, and we want to make this as easy as possible. Our goal is to provide prompt and professional service to our clients.
At Shapiro & Shapiro we work with clients in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and the surrounding communities with their estate planning needs and probate matters. Contact us by email or call 225-928-4193 to make an appointment.
Baton Rouge Community Property Issues
Divorce Property Division Lawyer
Several issues may arise regarding your assets and property during and after your marriage or divorce. Kristina Shapiro has over 30 years of experience helping Louisiana clients deal with a variety of property issues. For more information, select from the list below or contact Shapiro & Shapiro by e-mail or by calling us directly at 225-928-4193.
Community Property vs. Separate Property
Community property is that property which was acquired by the spouses during the marriage, with a few exceptions. Those exceptions include the spouses have a separate property regime (pre-nuptial agreement etc.); the property was inherited by or donated to one of the spouses only; or one of the spouses acquired the property with his or her separate funds. Each spouse generally owns an undivided one-half interest in all community property.
Separate property is all property that is not community property and includes property that was acquired by a spouse prior to marriage; property that is inherited or donated to that spouse; and property acquired by a spouse with his separate funds.
Management of Community Property
Each spouse has equal rights to manage the community property, and both must agree or the sale, mortgage or lease, or donation of community real estate and other items. However, in some instances it may be important for a spouse to consent or concur in the management of the property by the other spouse.
Prenuptial Agreements and Marriage Contracts
Parties may contract with each other to renounce, terminate or modify the community property rules.
Income from separate property that is earned during a marriage will become community property unless the parties have entered into a separate property regime or marriage contract. However, parties may reserve the income from their separate property as their separate income.
Partition of Community Property and Debts Upon Divorce
There are several issues regarding the use and division of property that arise as a result of a divorce. The property can be divided amicably between the parties at any time by mutual agreement. This agreement must be drafted into a Community Property Settlement. If the parties cannot agree on a division, then after the divorce is final the court must divide the property so that the parties are treated equally to the extent possible.
If there are retirement accounts, special provisions require a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) be signed by the court in order to allocate a portion of these benefits to the nonemployee spouse.
The division of Community Debts is also a potential problem. The debts may be divided equally, or based on the ability of a spouse to pay them. However, even with an unequal division of debts, the parties must receive an equal division of the net community property.
Use of Property and Restraining Orders
During the proceeding for a divorce and pending the division of the community property, it may be necessary for some of the assets to be divided so that neither spouse has the greater advantage. This can include financial accounts and use of movable property (furniture, fixtures and appliances).
The use of the family home may be an important factor in the event of a divorce for several reasons. It is essential that proper reservation of the fair market value of the home is reserved so that the spouse who must leave the house is given some benefit pending the division of the property.
Sometimes it may be necessary to obtain a restraining order against the other spouse to prevent the other spouse from disposing of property pending the division of the assets.
Financial support may be awarded to a spouse if that spouse if free from fault in the breakup of the marriage and has a need for such support, and the other spouse has the ability to pay. Support pending a divorce is calculated differently than final support, and is based on different criteria.
Contact a Baton Rouge Community Property Issues Lawyer to schedule your appointment or to learn more about our skilled Louisiana attorney at Shapiro & Shapiro, contact us by email or call 225-910-8343 today.
Baton Rouge Estate
Dealing with legal issues after the death of a loved one can be challenging. While individuals and families are grieving, the matter of the deceased individual's estate may arise. A knowledgeable estate administration attorney can help you understand your options and obligations, as well as walking you through the process of settling your loved one's estate.
At the Baton Rouge law firm of Shapiro & Shapiro, our attorney dedicates her time, resources and knowledge to helping clients address a wide range of legal concerns, including estate planning and probate. Kristina Shapiro has been serving clients since 1986, and has over 30 years of experience that she uses when handling estate administration matters.
Estate Administration Services
As part of our estate administration representation, we can assist with the following:
Comprehensive Probate Representation
The validity of an individual's will can be determined after they have passed away through a process called probate. This can sometimes be a complex process involving the courts. Our attorney is highly familiar with the probate process and can take the time to explain to you how the process may affect your specific situation.
Contact a Baton Rouge Estate Administration Lawyer today. You do not have to face estate administration and probate matters alone; let us help you through the process. To further discuss your specific case and concerns with our trusted Louisiana attorney at Shapiro & Shapiro, contact us by email or call 225-928-4193 today.