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Yearly Archives: 2023

Probate Appeal

Probate Information Jan 14, 2023
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When does a probate appeal in Florida make sense? Well, for some orders, you actually MUST appeal right NOW– within 30 days of the order. Or you can’t later. Here are some pointers for beneficiaries, family members, creditors and personal representatives. For legal commentary on appeal attorneys fees, click here. Probate Appeal and the “secret rule“ OK, so you are involved in a probate. A Florida estate. And the probate court judge just handed down a ruling that you don’t like. And, maybe that ruling affects one’s inheritance, or some important estate assets (like homestead), or how the estate will be administered. (like, who will be the administrator or personal representative). Maybe there was a will contest. Anyway…… You want to know if you can, or should, file an appeal. There is a lot to consider over a short time frame. Remember, in the Florida probate process, time is almost never on your side. Super short deadlines requiring you to act. For a free Florida legal video on this subject, click HERE. There are two things which you need to know right away. One, how much time do you have? Two, is the order that was handed down, one subject to Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.170? A few years ago, probate litigation attorneys were introduced to a new appellate rule. This “new” rule (not so “new” anymore, right?) made certain probate court orders IMMEDIATELY “APPEALABLE.” That also means that if you don’t appeal now, you end up living with […]


Homestead Florida

Probate Information Jan 14, 2023
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One’s true and single abode, or home, is your Florida homestead. And family members inherit millions, if not billions, of dollars each year from this unique asset. How do you get yours? For more on homestead litigation, click that link. Understanding the Basics Here’s a list of important bullet points that will start you on your way to understanding homestead. To assert your right to an inheritance, you may need to file two things, if everybody cannot agree. A petition to determine homestead or beneficiaries. And maybe a partition action. The truth is that lots of Florida residents, even really rich ones, die without a will. All the time. That means that millions of dollars are going to “heirs.” Most of the time, one of the most valuable assets in the estate is the house. Here are things you need to know : Each Florida resident has one homestead. Only one, no matter how many houses you have. There are three areas of legal importance: creditor protection, real estate taxes and who gets it when when you die. This commentary is about the last topic. There are restrictions on how you can, must or may leave it. (it’s often referred to as restrictions on “devise”) If left one way, the house is said to automatically “descend” to the heirs. (a spouse is included in the class of heirs) You cannot dis-inherit your spouse from your homestead unless he agrees in writing. Yes, spouses in Florida have automatic rights to homestead […]


Homestead Appeal

FAQs Jan 13, 2023
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A homestead appeal often means that there are millions of dollars on the line. So, you need a probate lawyer who understands both the intricacies of Florida homestead and also appeals. (To read about getting attorneys fees for your appeal, consider reading this). Experience Counts Let’s face it. Experience Counts. Homestead law is confusing. So are appeals. And sometimes there is “tension” between a 2nd, 3rd or 4th spouse and the deceased Florida resident’s adult children. But, in Florida, a surviving spouse or widow has VERY VALUABLE PROPERTY RIGHTS. Unless you signed a prenup. But even then, folks “fight” over what the prenup says. What its terms are. Who gets what? That’s why it makes sense to find a law firm that has handled appeals for years. And specifically homestead litigation and appeals. Here is a recent homestead appeal that got the client millions of dollars. The adult children of the deceased Florida resident “fought” the surviving spouse, who signed a prenup. The 4th District Court of Appeal reversed the Palm Beach County probate judge (who gave the spouse nothing). The DCA agreed with the lawyers for the spouse –she should get half of the homestead. When the appeal finished, the real estate market was on fire. The residence was worth millions. And the spouse got millions. Homestead Rights So, the surviving spouse has very valuable homestead rights. This includes a right to live in the deceased Florida resident (spouse’s) home. See Florida Probate Law 732.401. Or, under limited 6 […]


Florida Probate Appeal

Probate Information Jan 13, 2023
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A Florida Probate Appeal may be your only way to get justice if you just lost on an important issue. In some instances, you MUST appeal a probate order within 30 days. Read on to learn more about this. (For a free video on a complex estate appeal, click here.) How long do I have to appeal? Most people know that you generally have 30 days to file a notice of appeal. But, in the context of estates and probates, it can be confusing. Why? Because over the last decade, there was an important Florida probate appeal rule change. (Check out the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure). This new rule (not so “new” anymore) is rule 9.170. Why is that important ? Because, generally, you can’t appeal matters until the end of your lawsuit. And you can generally only appeal “final” orders. You know, those judgments or orders which finally determine a right. BUT, with this “new” probate appeals rule, this new change permitted the IMMEDIATE review of probate court orders. In other words, for certain rulings, you don’t have to wait until later. What that also means is that if you want to appeal a certain ruling by a Florida probate court, you MUST do so know. Failure to file a timely appeal means that, generally, you have abandoned further judicial review of that order or judgment. If an order or judgment is not appealed, then that becomes a final, “un-appealable” order. That means that you can’t later try […]