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Miami Injunction Litigation

Uncategorized Nov 14, 2020

When will a Miami trial court grant an injunction? To be entitled to an injunction in Florida, what must be proven? When do you need to hire a Florida lawyer to assist you with an injunction? When is a stalking injunction necessary in Florida? How can I obtain a stalking injunction in Miami? Miami Stalking Injunctions According to Florida Statute 784.048(2), stalking occurs when a person “willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks another person. You may wonder what the definition of “harass” is according to the Florida Statutes. To harass means to “engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress to that person and serves no legitimate purpose.” §784.048(1)(a), Fla. Stat. If someone is stalking you in Florida, you may wish to file an injunction. Probate lawyers and business attorneys know that disputes over money and inheritances can often get pretty heated. Sometimes, although the parties are supposed to be fighting in court, a party decides to stalk or harass the other party. This is usually when a stalking injunction is considered. In addition to stalking injunctions, temporary injunctions to freeze bank accounts or protect assets are often filed during Miami inheritance lawsuits. Stalking Injunctions in Florida Shannon v. Smith, a July 23 2019 First DCA opinion, is a great case to read as it discusses and defines both stalking and cyberstalking. Here, an alleged victim petitioned for temporary stalking injunction against a neighbor. The neighbor appealed. After reviewing the evidence, which […]


Miami Inheritance Lawsuits + Interested Persons

What We Do Nov 6, 2020
post about Miami Inheritance Lawsuits + Interested Persons

Do you want to contest a Miami will or inheritance? Family members have questions. That’s understandable. But before you can launch a Will Contest or an Undue Influence case, do you have legal standing? Are you an interested person under Florida Probate or Trust Law? You need to have some legal connection to launch Miami Inheritance Lawsuits. We previously provided legal commentary about Inheritance Theft. Now, let’s discuss being an interested person. Who is an “Interested Person”? Florida Probate Code Section 731.201(23) provides the following definition: “Interested person” means any person who may reasonably be expected to be affected by the outcome of the particular proceeding involved. Note in Miami Inheritance Lawsuits, an “interested person” is NOT the same as a “person of interest”. The latter term is one which law enforcement uses. We are talking about inheritances and Florida Probates and Trusts. Not criminal law. Miami probate lawyers know that an interested person interested, in a Florida probate case, has greater rights than others. For instance, an interested person has a right to request information regarding the inventory and accounting of the Miami estate. This is information that is kept confidential from the general public. Only an interested person has standing (a legal right to be involved) in Miami probate court proceedings. An interested person can object to various pleadings and intervene in the Miami probate proceeding. For example, interested persons can object to the qualifications of the Florida personal representative, the validity of the Florida will, or the venue/jurisdiction of the court handling the Florida probate. It’s clear that the beneficiary of a Miami […]


Defending the Florida Trustee: FREE CLE Zoom Webinar Friday, November 13, 2020 1:00- 1:50 pm

What We Do Nov 6, 2020
post about Defending the Florida Trustee: FREE CLE Zoom Webinar Friday, November 13, 2020 1:00- 1:50 pm

There are Billions of dollars in Florida trusts. Defending the Florida Trustee is serious business. Almost monthly, Pankauski Lazarus offers Continuing Legal Education (CLE) webinars, which are approved by the Florida Bar. All CLE webinars are sponsored by Pankauski Lazarus and FREE to Florida Bar members. All Florida lawyers are welcome to attend. Pankauski Lazarus exclusively represents clients in matters involving disputes, trials and appeals surrounding Florida estates, business, wills and probate litigation. Therefore, if you are a Florida probate, guardianship or estate planning lawyer, many of the webinar topics may relate to your Florida practice. SAVE THE DATE: Friday, November 13, 2020, 1:00 p.m.-1:50 p.m. Pankauski Lazarus PLLC will be offering a FREE, 1 credit hour CLE on Defending the Florida Trustee- how to properly plead affirmative defenses, led by managing partner John Pankauski.  Mr. Pankauski literally wrote the book on trusts. You can purchase his Pankauski’s Trustees’ Guide on Amazon. WHERE: Online via Zoom. REGISTRATION REQUIRED: To register for this CLE webinar, click here. Once registered, you will receive an email with the link to join the webinar.  If you have any questions, or need more information, please email Amanda@phflorida.com.


Surviving Spouse Inheritance Rights and Miami Appeals

What We Do Nov 5, 2020
post about Surviving Spouse  Inheritance Rights and Miami Appeals

Are you a surviving spouse involved in an inheritance dispute in Miami, Florida? Has your wife or husband recently passed away leaving a house or condo behind? Florida provides surviving spouse inheritance rights that are greater and more valuable than in other areas. Part of a good estate lawyer’s job is to get a widow or widower all they are entitled to. But, if you are a family member, do you know the limitations? We haver previously provided important Florida Inheritance legal commentary on spousal rights. Do you know your inheritance rights and by when you must take action? Are you already involved in inheritance litigation where an appeal may end up being filed? More Than You Can Imagine Miami lawyers know that surviving spouses have important inheritance rights. However, often times, probate battles between the decedent’s children from another marriage and the surviving spouse arise. Therefore, it’s important to have a Miami litigator on your side to help you get your inheritance. Also, Miami probate attorneys know that some inheritance lawsuits, including those regarding inheritance rights, can lead to an appeal. If you disagree with a final judgment or order, you may be able to file an appeal. On the other hand, if you win a case, the other side may appeal. Therefore, it’s important to anticipate the possibility of having to hire an experienced Miami appellate attorney. How Do You Begin to Hire Serious Inheritance Lawyers? If you are in the process of hiring a Miami appellate firm, […]


Surviving Spouse Inheritance Rights and Homestead

Probate Information Oct 28, 2020
post about Surviving Spouse Inheritance Rights and Homestead

Does a surviving spouse have rights when it comes to inheritances? Yes ! Those inheritance rights can be worth billions of dollars in Florida ! No exaggeration. A wife or a husband can, at first, be dis-inherited. But, if you did not sign a prenup, you can claim your inheritance. Sometimes, the window of time is very short. We have previously provided solid Florida law commentary on inheritances and personal financial data. After all, you need to know where your inheritance is coming from. We also blogged about a surviving spouse’s rights. What happens if my husband doesn’t include me in his Florida will or trust? What happens to my wife’s homestead property now that she has passed away? Can my husband’s adult children take away the house that I live in just because it was only in my husband’s name? Florida Surviving Spouse Rights In Florida, surviving spouses have inheritance rights to property of a deceased spouse.  In fact, there are statutory minimum benefits to ensure that surviving family members are provided for, regardless of the decedent’s intent.  What are these benefits? Homestead, elective share, and family allowances are three of the main inheritance rights of surviving spouses in Florida. Are there exceptions? As with almost every Florida law, there are exceptions. If a surviving spouse waived his or her inheritance rights in a prenuptial or other agreement, he or she may be out of luck. However, it never hurts to consult with a Florida probate lawyer to make sure that the inheritance rights or homestead […]


Florida Divorce Lawsuits, Marital Assets, and Inheritances

Uncategorized Oct 27, 2020
post about Florida Divorce Lawsuits, Marital Assets, and Inheritances

What do Miami divorces have to do with probate matters? What does a divorce have to do with inheritances? Should I have a prenuptial agreement drafted by a Miami attorney? Why should I spend the money to get a prenup when I love my future wife and want to be with her forever? What do Miami Beach probate litigators need to know about prenups and inheritances? If you inherit money during your marriage, is it automatically considered a marital asset? Miami Prenups and Inheritances Did you know that a prenup can protect your inheritance from your spouse in the case of death or divorce? In a prenup, a person can specify how to divide up the marital property. In addition, it can help to ensure that inheritances and certain accounts are not deemed marital assets during a divorce proceeding. Marital Assets in Florida Florida’s equitable distribution statute explains what is to be considered marital assets and what is to be considered nonmarital assets in a Florida divorce. The statute provides the following in part: (a) 1. “Marital assets and liabilities” include: a. Assets acquired and liabilities incurred during the marriage, individually by either spouse or jointly by them. b. The enhancement in value and appreciation of nonmarital assets resulting either from efforts of either party during the marriage or from contribution to or expenditure thereon of marital funds or other forms of marital assets, or both. c. Interspousal gifts during the marriage. Is a bank account acquired prior to marriage a marital asset? Is a Miami trust fund inherited by one spouse during […]


Florida Will Contests: Can Prior Beneficiaries Sue to Revoke Probate?

FAQs Oct 20, 2020
post about Florida Will Contests: Can Prior Beneficiaries Sue to Revoke Probate?

Are you thinking about contesting a Florida will? Whether you can file Florida Will Contests may depend on whether or not you were in a prior will. If you were cut out by a later will, understand how to object to the will. For more on “legal standing” or the ability to object, read on. Need a contingency fee probate litigator? Contesting a Florida Will If you are looking to contest a will in Miami or Fort Lauderdale, you should consider consulting with a Florida probate litigator. Florida probate lawyers, like the lawyers at Pankauski Lazarus, can evaluate your matter to determine whether or not there are facts that may lead to a successful will contest. Both Florida estate planning attorneys and trust litigators know that there are many reasons a will may be contested. One of the main reasons a Florida will could be challenged is if the testator, the person who signed the will, did not have “testamentary capacity” to sign a will in Florida. According to Florida law, what is “testamentary capacity”? Testamentary Capacity, Competency and Florida Will Contests If a will was signed with the signer did not have “capacity”, the will is void. Put another way, if the will-signer was not competent, then the will needs to be objected to, to overturn it. Failure to object timely means an otherwise invalid will may be admitted to probate. There are four main components to show testamentary capacity (sometimes called “sufficient mental capacity”) in Florida: understanding that he or she is creating […]


Florida Estates and Timely Creditor Claims

Uncategorized Oct 14, 2020
post about Florida Estates and Timely Creditor Claims

What is a reasonably ascertainable creditor in a Florida probate proceeding? How does a creditor give the personal representative of a Florida estate notice of his or her claim? What does the personal representative have to do to properly determine creditors? What happens if a creditor files a claim against a West Palm beach estate after the claim period? Florida Estate Proceedings: Notice to Creditors If you are serving as the personal representative of a Florida estate, you will have to comply with Florida Statute, section 733.2121. Therefore, as personal representative, you must properly publish Notice to Creditors and make a diligent search to determine creditors. To ensure that the Notice to Creditors is properly published, it is important to read the relevant statute in its entirety and to consult with your Florida probate attorney. Furthermore, in any probate matter, it is very important to know filing deadlines. Under Florida Statute 733.702(1), creditors must file any statements of claim against a decedent’s estate within three months of the first publication of the notice to creditors or within thirty days of being served with it, whichever is later. Any claim not filed within that time is barred unless the court grants an extension.733.702(3), Florida Statutes(2012). Extensions can be granted “upon ground of fraud, estoppel, or insufficient notice of the claims period.” Florida courts take deadlines very seriously. If you believe that you have a creditor claim against a Florida estate, you should begin interviewing estate lawyers and get your claim filed immediately. If you […]


Attorney-Client Privilege and Miami Trust Lawsuits

Uncategorized Oct 13, 2020
post about Attorney-Client Privilege and Miami Trust Lawsuits

What is rule 4-1.6? What do Miami lawyers need to know about this rule? What do trust lawsuits have to do with attorney-client privilege? What is a waiver of consent? What information can your Miami lawyer disclose without your consent? Can you compel a nonparty to disclose privileged information? Disclosure of Trust Documents in Your Miami Lawsuit Rule 4-1.6 is one of the rules regulating the Florida Bar. This particular rule is very important as it is addresses a Florida lawyer’s duty in regards to the confidentiality of his or her client’s information. Specifically, this rule states that ” a lawyer shall not reveal information relating to the representation of a client unless the client gives informed consent, the disclosure is impliedly authorized in order to carry out the representation, or the disclosure is permitted by Rule 4-1.6(b).” If you are involved in trust, estate, or even business litigation in MIami, you should consider reading this rule in its entirety. That way, you can understand your lawyer’s responsibilities when it comes to attorney-client privilege. Miami Litigation and Florida Statute 90.502 In addition to becoming familiar with rule 4-1.6, you may want to read  Florida Statute 90.502. This is the Florida statute that attorney-client privilege is governed by. Per the statute, as a client of a Miami lawyer, you have “a privilege to refuse to disclose, and to prevent any other person from disclosing, the contents of confidential communications when such other person learned of the communications because they were made […]


When is a Florida Guardian Entitled to Compensation?

Uncategorized Oct 2, 2020
post about When is a Florida Guardian Entitled to Compensation?

Do court appointed guardians get paid? What criteria does the court consider in determining an award of fees to a guardian? When is a guardian entitled to compensation? What is Florida Statute 744.108? Can a West Palm Beach guardianship lawyer assist me in guardianship litigation regarding fees? Is a Florida guardian entitled to attorneys fees? Who pays for the attorneys fees in a Florida guardianship? Guardian and Attorney Fees and Expenses If you are about to become a court appointed guardian in Florida, or are considering filing for guardianship of a vulnerable adult, you may want to read Florida Statute 744.108 in its entirety. This statute discusses the compensation of a guardian and sets forth the criteria to be considered by the Florida guardianship court in determining an award of fees to a guardian. In Florida, a guardian, or an attorney who has rendered services to the ward or to the guardian on the ward’s behalf, is entitled to a reasonable fee for services rendered and reimbursement for costs incurred on behalf of the ward.   What are the criteria the Florida guardianship court considers when fees for guardian or an attorney are submitted? Florida Statute 744.108 lists the following criteria: The time and labor required The novelty and difficulty of the questions involved and the skill required to perform the services properly The likelihood that the acceptance of the particular employment will preclude other employment of the person The fee customarily charged in the locality for similar services;(e) The nature and […]