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Sioux Falls, South Dakota Legal Blog

Intestate succession in South Carolina

Sioux Falls residents are encouraged to begin the process of planning the dispersal of their estates relatively early in their adult lives. Yet despite the best efforts of estate planning experts, many American adults do not have a will (indeed, information compiled by Gallup shows that only 44 percent actually have such a document). The reasons why so many adults put off estate planning is unknown; the consequences of such inaction, however, are not. This may come as a surprise to some (who may believe that their beneficiaries are allowed to determine the distribution of their assets if no will exists providing such stipulations). In fact, state law is what dictates how intestate estates are dispersed. 

Intestate is the legal term used to describe estates that are not governed by a will. South Dakota’s intestate succession guidelines can be found in Section 29A-2-102 if the state’s Codified Laws. Here, it says that the surviving spouse of one who dies intestate inherits the entirety of the estate if the decedent had no surviving descendants (or, if they did, the surviving descendants are also the descendants of the surviving spouse). If one left behind descendants that were not also the lineal descendants of their surviving spouse, the spouse would then inherit the first $100,000 of the estate. Intestate succession guidelines then dictate that remaining amount be divided equally between the surviving spouse and the descendants. 

How can I identify a potentially bad client?

Whether you're a writer or graphic designer, one of the best aspects of freelancing is that you get to choose projects at your own discretion. This can land you in trouble, however, as not all clients are worth your time. In fact, some clients may even cause more problems than they're worth, which can lead to issues with invoicing or claims that you didn't live up to the terms of your contract. To protect you and your business, Forbes offers the following tips on how to spot a bad client, and what to do you if you find yourself in a dispute. 

Unfortunately, some clients will do anything to avoid an invoice. They may claim work wasn't done to their satisfaction, or simply put off responding to your repeated appeals for payment. Others might simply forget to remit payment for services rendered, which isn't nefarious but still aggravating. You can sidestep payment issues by asking for a portion of the payment in advance. From there, you and the client can establish payment milestones. If a client is reluctant to agree to this pricing model, you can choose to walk away without any real loss. 

Benefits of mediation in commercial real estate disputes

Whether due to a lease disagreement, breach of contract or other conflict, commercial real estate buyers, sellers, developers and more may find themselves facing a dispute. When you are unable to reach a solution, you may fear the daunting process of litigation.

However, South Dakota commercial real estate disputes can often benefit from a resolution through mediation. Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) method, in which both parties and a neutral mediator attempt to come to an agreeable solution.

Dynasty trusts protect assets for future generations

Drawing up a will is an essential step for South Dakota residents who wish to protect assets for their family. However, depending on your particular needs, a will alone may not be enough. At The Krause Law Firm, P.C., we often assist clients with estate planning, including wills, advance directives and trusts.

According to Anderson Advisors, a dynasty trust can protect your assets from a variety of situations while passing your wealth to your descendants. Also known as a family trust, it differs from other estate planning tools as it lasts longer. This generation-skipping trust can remain in place for several decades. You can also limit how your descendants access the assets it contains.

Why are health care directives important?

Usually, when you seek medical care your doctor will explain your treatment options to you and you will choose the option you want to try. However, there may come a time when you are unable to understand your treatment options or unable to express your wishes. This could occur gradually as you age or become ill. It could also happen suddenly as a result of an accident.

Because there is no way to know what your future might hold, it is prudent to act early to make your wishes for or against certain treatments known. Health care directives are legal documents that allow you to do just that.

How are businesses valued when being sold?

Even if you don't plan on selling your business any time soon, it still helps to know its value. When retirement finally comes, you want to ensure you're getting the best value for your business's worth. There are actually three different valuation methods you can use, each of which may uncover some illuminating information. The Balance explains the different ways that a business's value can be determined. 

Earning value

How often do you need to update a will or estate plan?

If you already have a will in place, you may wonder how often you need to update it or if you need to add other key elements of an estate plan. No one wants to find out after their spouse is no longer able to make their own legal or financial decisions that now it will be more difficult to appoint a power of attorney.

How can I find a reliable business partner?

Choosing a business partner is a major decision that will have lasting consequences. If you make this decision wisely, your business has a great opportunity to grow and expand beyond your wildest dreams. However, if you make the wrong choice you might find yourself faced with a lot of unnecessary obstacles that prevent you from achieving your goals. If you're thinking about taking on a business partner, The Balance recommends the following steps. 

Look for financial stability

How can I prepare for the adoption process?

Families in Sioux Falls pursuing adoption have a lot of love to give. Adoption brings families together and ensures that all children have a chance at a happy and loving life. The process can be a bit intimidating for parents, which is why Parents Magazine offers the following tips. 

Not all adoptions are the same. For example, some parents prefer to adopt an infant while others are open to adopting older kids. You'll also need to decide whether you want to adopt a child from the U.S. or from another country. Whether you want an open or closed adoption is yet another consideration, as some adoptive parents prefer to maintain a lasting relationship with the birth parents. You must give these decisions a lot of thought, which allows you to go into the process fully informed. 

The broad utility of trusts for South Dakota individuals, families

Families in South Dakota and everywhere else are unique.

That is perhaps the foremost point that needs spotlighting in any discussion or overview of the estate planning process. No two families have the same assets, goals linked with asset preservation or lawful tax avoidance, desires for heirs and beneficiaries in the future, charitable aspirations or intergenerational legacies. Consequently, one-size-fits-all boilerplate planning in the estate realm is flatly nonsensical.

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