St. Michael Law Blog

How to Successfully Talk with your Parents about their Estate Planning

I recently read the popular business self-help book, Crucial conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High and realized that its principles for dealing with difficult conversations are applicable not only to business conversations, but also to difficult conversations that may be required in well-functioning families. For example, how can adult children successfully talk with elderly parents about their wishes for health care, funeral arrangements and final disposition of their assets at death?

What happens to my vehicle after my death?

Minnesota law has recently been updated to allow people to name a beneficiary on the title of a motor vehicle. An owner of a motor vehicle can use a Transfer of Death (TOD) designation to transfer title to a motor vehicle to a beneficiary of the owner's choosing after the owner's death. A TOD beneficiary has no interest in the motor vehicle until the death of the owner(s). The owner(s) may therefore sell the vehicle or change the beneficiary designation at any time without the consent of any beneficiary. This is a powerful new tool for people to use to ensure that their assets pass to their loved ones in the most efficient way possible after their death.

Can I Plan for What Happens to my Pet After my Death?

The Minnesota legislature recently passed a law that allows Minnesotans to create a trust for the care of an animal. Pet owners now have additional tools at their disposal to ensure that their beloved pets will be cared for according to their wishes after they pass away.

When Do I Need to Update My Health Care Directive?

In Minnesota if you become temporarily or permanently unable to make your own health care decisions there is no one with the legal authority to make health care decisions for you after you turn eighteen. For that reason, all adults need a health care directive.

DWI in Minnesota

Being charged with a DWI can be a terrifying experience. Not only are you faced with the possibility of losing your license, jail time, and the nightmare of navigating the legal process, you must balance all of these worries with the logistical concerns of your employment and your personal life.

In case you missed it ... the new LLC law is now in effect!

You may have seen or heard something near the end of 2017 about a "new law" or "big changes" impacting Minnesota limited liability companies (LLCs). You may have even received an email or letter from the Minnesota Secretary of State about it. Well, in case you dismissed the news or weren't paying attention, on January 1, 2018, Minnesota adopted a brand-new set of laws governing LLCs that were formed before August 1, 2015. This is not a small change, as the entire chapter is being replaced. More importantly, all the laws that your old LLC were governed by have now changed.

Social Security Survivor Benefits

While many people think of Social Security as being solely a retirement benefit, you may also be able to receive benefits from Social Security after a family member dies. Part of the Social Security taxes you pay each month go towards a Social Security "Life Insurance" plan that may entitle family members to receive survivor's benefits from Social Security after the death of a family member.

Estate Planning For Blended Families

Blended families include children from a previous marriage of one spouse or both spouses and are increasingly common today. Second marriages that result in such blended families can be a source of great happiness but can also present an estate planning challenge.

Three Ways to Make Business Succession Planning Successful

If you are a business owner, there will inevitably come a time when you'll have to consider what to do with your business when you are ready to move on. Some options include transferring ownership over to a key employee, selling to a third party, or dissolving the business entirely.

What business succession looks like ultimately depends on the type of business you own and what your goals are for the company. Here are three ways to make sure your business succession planning goes smoothly.

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