Panama City Probate Attorney
With Offices in Panama City, Florida Serving all of Bay County
As many people discover after the loss of a loved one, Florida law requires certain assets to go through the probate process. The purpose of probate is to ensure that valid debts are paid and that the balance of the estate is distributed according to the provisions of the Will; or when there is no Will, according to Florida law. Depending on the assets in question, there are a few ways this can be accomplished.
As a Panama City probate lawyer, I can guide you through the estate administration process. The majority of my probate cases deal deceased residents of north Florida, but am generally happy to offer assistance throughout the State of Florida. I also regularly assist with the administration of ancillary estates, which is sometimes necessary when a non-resident dies owning Florida real property. I offer personalized service, attention to detail, and a willingness to work efficiently on your behalf. One of my primary goals it to create long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationships with my clients.
Personal Representatives are the decision makers for their estates, and they should have legal assistance from the outset. Aside from assisting a Personal Representative with the legal aspects of estate administration, a probate attorney's primary goal should be to minimize stress and offer clear options and solutions to the Personal Representative. More often than not, people with a beneficial interest in an estate will work together in a friendly and civilized manner. Obviously, this is the best way to move forward. That said, people are often surprised by the behavior of their fellow estate beneficiaries.
A Personal Representative is entitled to, and I encourage them to accept, a fee equal to roughly three percent (3%) of the probate estate's assets. The Personal Representative should be aware that stepping into this role can be stressful, and that many questions will arise. This stress can be minimized with the assistance of a knowledgeable attorney. Selecting the right one may be a Personal Representative's most important decision.
Consult a Panama City Probate Lawyer
If you are the Personal Representative of an estate or a family member with estate administration issues, I encourage you to seek legal assistance as soon as possible. l will meet personally with you and/or your family. If it's a good fit, we will work together to get the matter resolved as fairly and efficiently as possible.
Are you facing probate problems? Contact Panama City probate attorney Max W. McCord III for a consultation about your probate situation today!
What are some of the benefits of conducting business through a legal entity?
One of the most important benefits is the protection of your personal assets against the claims of creditors. Generally speaking, directors, officers, managers, members, and stockholders (the interested parties) are not held personally liable for the debts and obligations of the business entity. The interested parties should be limited in their personal liability to the amount invested in the company. Another legal benefit is the transferability of ownership, which can be done either in whole or in part. Also, some estate tax planning options are only available to business entities. Retirement funds, such as 401ks may be established more easily. Also, a business entity can acquire and establish its own credit rating.
What are some of the mistakes people make when going into business?There are always risks involved in going into business. As most people know, a majority of small businesses do not succeed in the long run. Mistakes of new business owners may include the lack of a realistic business plan, underestimating costs and tax liabilities, and unfavorable business contracts/agreements. Even more problematic is a failure to understand the business or the marketplace, underestimating the competition, and/or not being effective at managing a business. Responsibility for these latter areas ultimately falls to the owners, but sound legal advice can substantially improve the chances of success.
How can I be protected from liability claims that arise from my business?
Generally speaking, business owners doing business as limited liability companies, corporations, or limited partnerships do not have personal liability for the obligations or debts of the business. This assumes that no personal guarantees have been executed. If the business has been properly created, it is a separate legal entity. The details of formation are important, and the filing fees must be paid. If properly created and maintained, the assets owned by the business should be the only ones that are subject to debt or other liability considerations.