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Copy Of Will Was Good Enough

Copy Of Will Was Good Enough

November 27, 2013

Authored by: Luke Lantta

Originally posted on bryancavefiduciarylitigation.com

Testators may want to keep careful track of who has copies of their will and where those copies are.  If only a copy of a will – and not the original – is found, it may raise a question about whether the testator destroyed the original in an attempt to revoke it.  Such was the argument made by the caveators in Johnson v. Fitzgerald.  Let’s see why the Georgia Supreme Court felt like a copy was good enough to admit to probate in solemn form.

The executor of an estate offered a copy of a will for probate in solemn form, requesting that it be admitted to probate upon proper proof.  The original could not be found.  The testator’s heirs at law filed a caveat alleging that the will had been revoked by the testator’s destruction of it.

Under Georgia law, if

Three Private Client Attorneys Named to Best Lawyer Status For Thirty Years

November 15, 2013

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Six of Bryan Cave’s attorneys are featured in a special publication of The Best Lawyers in America for having achieved “Best Lawyer” status in each of the list’s 30 years of publication.  St. Louis Partner Lawrence Brody; St. Louis Partner John Michael Clear; Atlanta Of Counsel William Linkous Jr.; DC Partner Stanley Marcuss; St. Louis Partner Michael Newmark; and Atlanta Of Counsel Joe Thompson all have been featured in Best Lawyers since the first directory was published in 1983. Best Lawyers is the oldest lawyer-rating publication in the United States. The 30-year list of honorees ran in numerous regional outlets recently, including The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Congratulations to our Private Client attorneys, Lawrence Brody, William Linkous, Jr., and Michael Newmark for being three of those six!

Michael Bland Named One of Denver’s 2013 Five Star Wealth Managers

November 15, 2013

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Denver Partner Michael Bland was recognized in the November issue of 5280 Magazine and ColoradoBiz Magazine as one of Denver’s 2013 Five Star Wealth Managers, as rated by Five Star Professional – an independent research organization that recognizes professionals in the legal, financial services and accounting industries who provide exceptional service to their clients. Bland was selected for the third year in a row as a Five Star Wealth Manager, an award given to less than 7 percent of wealth managers in the Denver area.

Congratulations Michael!

Investment Advisors Fiduciary Standard

On Tuesday, the House approved legislation that would delay a Labor Department regulation that would impose fiduciary standards for financial advisors.  The measure, sponsored by Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., would prohibit DOL from proposing its regulation until 60 days after the Securities and Exchange Commission finalizes a similar rule to raise standards for brokers providing retail investment advice. The bill attracted the support of 30 Democrats.  On Monday, the Obama administration threatened to veto the legislation, saying that it undermines DOL efforts to protect workers and retirees from conflicted investment advice for 401(k) plans and individual retirement accounts.  Supporters of the bill say the SEC must go first to ensure coordination between the agencies and avoid duplicative and costly fiduciary-duty requirements that would ultimately limit access to investment advice for smaller investors.  Opponents say it would effectively kill the DOL rule if the SEC declines to propose its

Conflict Of Interest Warranted Judicial Removal Of Personal Representative And Trustee

Originally posted on bryancavefiduciarylitigation.com

Individual trustees who must administer real property often attempt to save the trust money by personally making certain improvements, repairs, or maintenance to the property.  They then charge the trust for the work they performed.  As the Nebraska Court of Appeals points out in In re Estate of Robb, however, these acts – however well-intentioned – may be self-dealing and can put the trustee in a position of a conflict of interest, which can warrant removal from that fiduciary position.

When Mason D. Robb died, his son, Theodore, became the personal representative of his estate and the trustee of the inter vivos Mason D. Robb Revocable Living Trust.  The trust contained three pieces of real estate.

Under the terms of the trust, the trustee was to hold and use the trust property to pay administrative costs and the debts of the settlor and for the

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