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Wills and Trusts in a Nutshell

by Robert L. Mennell, Professor of Law Emeritus and Sherri L. Burr, Dickason Professor of Law, University of Mexico
Format
Book
Published
St. Paul, MN : West, [2012]
Edition
Fourth edition
Language
English
Series
West nutshell series
Nutshell series
ISBN
9780314280626, 0314280626
Summary
Overview: The fourth edition of this book updates laws affecting intestate succession, wills, guardianships and trusts. It introduces wills terminology to the lay audience and summarizes the law of trusts with references to the Uniform Trust Code and the Restatement of Trusts. It uses problems arising from celebrity peccadilloes and deaths, such as those of Brooke Astor, James Brown, Michael Jackson, and Anna Nichole Smith to illustrate legal issues. The book can be adopted to supplement a traditional wills and trusts class or as the sole text for a seminar.
Contents
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Table of cases
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: Intestacy
  • A: Intestate statutes
  • B: Modern intestacy schemes
  • 1: Surviving spouse's share
  • a: Entire estate
  • b: Portion of the estate
  • i: Decedent leaves a parent
  • ii: Decedent leaves stepchildren
  • iii: Decedent leaves children from a prior relationship
  • 2: Descendants
  • 3: Parents
  • 4: Grandparents
  • 5: Collateral relatives
  • a: First-line collaterals
  • b: Second and third-line collaterals
  • c: Next of kin
  • d: Stepchildren
  • e: Preferences
  • 6: State
  • 7: Community property intestacy statutes
  • C: Simultaneous death
  • D: Division among co-takers
  • 1: By right of representation
  • 2: Classic per stirpes
  • 3: Per capita at each generation
  • E: Non-marital, posthumous, and adopted children
  • 1: Non-marital children
  • a: Expanding the definition of legitimacy
  • b: Statutory trends permitting non-marital children to inherit
  • c: Constitutional rights of non-marital children to inherit
  • d: Disinheritance of non-marital children by will
  • 2: Posthumous children
  • 3: Adoptions
  • a: Traditional adoptions
  • b: Virtual adoptions
  • c: Inheritance-motivated adoptions
  • F: Bars to succession
  • 1: Disclaimer
  • 2: Divorce and bigamy
  • 3: Murder or manslaughter
  • Chapter 2: Rights Of The Spouse And Children
  • A: Summary of spousal rights
  • 1: Quarantine
  • 2: Homestead and exempt property
  • 3: Family maintenance allowance
  • 4: Small estate legislation
  • 5: Dower, curtesy, or statutory equivalents
  • B: Who is a widow or widower?
  • C: Pre-marital wills
  • D: Pretermission (omitted children)
  • E: Test knowledge on pretermission
  • Chapter 3: Statute Of Wills
  • A: Introduction
  • B: Formal wills
  • 1: New York estates, powers & trusts law 3-2-1
  • 2: Uniform probate code 2-502
  • 3: Analysis of requirements
  • a: Wills must be in writing
  • b: Exceptions to the written requirement
  • c: Subscribed and signed at the end
  • d: Signature by another for the testator
  • e: Presence of the testator
  • f: Signing or acknowledging
  • g: At the same time
  • h: Number of witnesses
  • i: Request by the testator
  • j: Sign "his" name
  • k: Addresses for witnesses
  • C: Witnesses to a formal will
  • D: Interested witness
  • E: Holographic wills
  • 1: Handwriting
  • 2: Entirely
  • 3: Signed
  • 4: Dated
  • F: Strict v liberal interpretation
  • G: Testamentary intent
  • 1: Letter wills
  • 2: Conditional wills
  • 3: Mock wills and sham wills
  • H: Will contests: incapacity, fraud, undue influence
  • 1: Incapacity
  • 2: Fraud
  • 3: Undue influence.
  • Chapter 4: Revoking And Changing Wills
  • A: Revocability
  • B: Intentional revocations
  • C: Revocation by writing: express and implied
  • D: Revocation by act
  • E: Partial revocation by act
  • F: Revocation by operation of law
  • G: Lost wills
  • H: Revival
  • I: Dependent relative revocation
  • 1: Theories and approaches
  • 2: Interaction with other wills doctrines
  • Chapter 5: Will Components
  • A: Codicils
  • B: Integration
  • 1: External integration
  • 2: Internal integration
  • C: Republication
  • D: Incorporation by reference
  • E: Independent legal significance
  • Chapter 6: Beneficiaries
  • B: Beneficiary's nature or action
  • 1: Aliens, animals, charities, corporations and felons
  • 2: Death of the beneficiary
  • 3: renunciation (disclaimer)
  • 4: Slayers as beneficiaries
  • a: Legal theories
  • b: Type of slaying
  • c: Type of property
  • C: Testator's action: contracts to make a will
  • D: Joint action of testator and beneficiary
  • 1: No-Contest (In Terrorem) clauses
  • 2: Conditional bequests, equitable charges and elections
  • a: Conditional bequests
  • b: Equitable charges
  • c: Elections
  • 3: Property settlement agreement
  • 4: Advancements and ademption by satisfaction
  • 5: Set-off (retainer)
  • Chapter 7: Estate Property
  • A: Types of bequests and devises
  • 1: Specific bequests or devises
  • 2: Demonstrative bequests
  • 3: General bequests and devises
  • 4: Residual bequests and devises
  • B: Abatement
  • C: Accretion
  • D: Ademption by extinction
  • E: Exoneration
  • Chapter 8: Interpretation
  • Chapter 9: Creation Of Trusts
  • A: Trusts contrasted to wills
  • B: Defining a "trust"
  • C: Contrasting a trust against other relationships
  • 1: Agency v trust
  • 2: Custodianships v trusts
  • 3: Personal representatives v trusts
  • 4: Bailments v trusts
  • 5: Power of appointments v trusts
  • 6: Security arrangements v trusts
  • 7: Contracts v trusts
  • 8: Imperfect gift v trust
  • D: Quiz on trusts v other relationships
  • Chapter 10: Elements Of A Trust
  • A: Transfer
  • B: Trust res/property
  • C: Settlor
  • D: Trustee
  • E: Beneficiary
  • 1: Private trust beneficiaries
  • a: Capacity
  • b: Unincorporated association
  • c: Class gifts-construction
  • d: Class gifts-ascertainability of members
  • e: Class gift-partial ascertainability
  • 2: Incidental beneficiaries
  • 3: Charitable trusts
  • a: Charitable purposes
  • i: Poverty
  • ii: Education
  • iii: Religion
  • iv: Governmental
  • v: Generally beneficial to the community
  • b: Cy pres
  • i: Trust
  • ii: Evidencing general charitable intent
  • iii: Which was initially valid
  • iv: Becomes impossible, illegal or impractical, or wasteful
  • c: Enforcement of charities (standing)
  • 4: Mixed charitable and non-charitable purposes
  • 5: Honorary trusts
  • a: Dead persons
  • b: Animals
  • c: Capricious purposes
  • F: Explanation of trust classifications
  • 1: Passive and active trusts
  • 2: Resulting (implied), constructive and express trusts
  • 3: Legal and illegal trusts
  • 4: Testamentary and inter vivos (living) trusts
  • 5: Revocable and irrevocable trusts
  • 6: Spendthrift, support, and discretionary trusts
  • a: Spendthrift trusts
  • b: Support trusts
  • c: Discretionary trusts
  • 7: Funded and unfunded life insurance trusts
  • 8: Massachusetts Business Trusts and Illinois Land Trusts
  • 9: Totten and Farkas v Williams Trusts.
  • Chapter 11: Trustee Powers And Duties
  • A: In general
  • B: Powers of the trustee
  • 1: Sales, leases and mortgages
  • 2: Investments, improvements and exchanges
  • 3: Discretionary powers
  • 4: Deviation
  • C: Duties of the trustee
  • 1: Loyalty (duty not to self-deal)
  • 2: Duty to administer
  • 3: Duty to make productive investments
  • 4: Duty to earmark (not to commingle), nominees
  • 5: Duty to account
  • 6: Delegation of duties
  • 7: Duty to diversify
  • 8: Duty of impartiality
  • 9: Breaches of trustee duties
  • a: Duty
  • b: Breach
  • c: Causation
  • d: Defenses
  • i: Exculpatory clauses
  • ii: Statutory authority for deviation from traditionally required fiduciary practices
  • iii: Court permission
  • iv: Express consent of all beneficiaries
  • e: Damages
  • D: Quiz on trustee duties
  • Chapter 12: Trust Administration Problems
  • A: Successive beneficiaries (principal and income)
  • 1: Principal and income generally
  • 2: Traditional principal and income issues
  • a: Expenses
  • b: Probate administration income
  • c: Interest, bond premium and discount
  • d: Dividends and other corporate distributions
  • e: Rents, depreciation reserves
  • f: Wasting assets, depletion
  • g: Unproductive and underproductive assets
  • 3: Changes made by the current principal and income act
  • 4: Liabilities among beneficiaries
  • B: Beneficiaries versus trustees
  • 1: Remedies for beneficiaries
  • 2: Trustee expenses and fees
  • 3: Indemnity of trustee
  • C: Rights of third parties
  • 1: Trustee liability to third parties
  • a: Classic approach
  • b: Uniform Trust Code 1010
  • 2: Beneficiary liability to third parties
  • 3: Third party liability to trust
  • D: Termination or modification of a trust
  • Chapter 13: Probate Administration
  • A: Jurisdiction over wills and trusts
  • 1: Letters
  • 2: Inventory and appraisal
  • 3: Claims by creditors
  • 4: Death tax
  • 5: Accounting
  • 6: Receipts and discharge
  • B: Probate Court jurisdiction over incapacitated persons, guardians and conservators
  • 1: Powers of attorney can avoid Probate Court jurisdiction
  • 2: Jurisdictional conflicts over guardianship
  • Index.
  • Intestacy
  • Rights of the spouse and children
  • The statute of wills
  • Revoking and changing wills
  • Will components
  • Beneficiaries
  • Estate property
  • Interpretation
  • Creation of trusts
  • Elements of a trust
  • Trustee powers and duties
  • Trust administration problems
  • Probate administration.
Description
xxiii, 360 pages : illustrations ; 19 cm.
Notes
Includes index.
Technical Details
  • Access in Virgo Classic
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