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Pour Over Wills in Florida

Probate Information • Mar 14, 2021
post about Pour Over Wills in Florida

What is a pour over will in Florida? You may have heard about wills and trusts and revocable trusts. What in the world is a pour over will? Here is everything you need to know about pour over wills (almost !) Read on for free legal links and videos. There is also a word of caution for heirs and family members if you are involved with a revocable trust, too. Get perspective from top notch will litigator, John Pankauski. Pankauski leads an elite group of trial lawyers and appellate attorneys. He used to write wills and now he only litigates them.

Writing a will is one thing. But when you are contesting a will, you better have an experienced litigator. One who has actually handles will contest trials.

Florida Pour Over Wills

“A pour over will is a will that leaves almost everything to one’s revocable trust” says Pankauski. He should know. Pankauski graduated from the prestigious Graduate Program at the University of Miami School of Law. In 1993, he received his LL.M. or Masters of Law. Pankauski was actually writing pour over wills since the early 90’s. Most wills have a basic, limited amount of information. Who do you want running your estate? (that’s called a Personal Representative in Florida) Who gets your “stuff”? (that usually means tangible personal property like household effects, and jewelry and furniture). To read, for free, the Florida Probate Rules, click HERE.

Pour Over Wills & Revocable Trusts

Pour over wills are the subject of many probate lawsuits and will contests. Find a firm of experts that specializes in this area suggests John Pankauski, Esquire. “Luckily” says Pankauski “there are many fine estate litigators in Florida“. Unfortunately, there are also a bunch of probate lawyers posing as trial attorneys when they really don’t know how to try a case.

Then, most pour over wills leave everything to the person’s revocable trust. The revocable trust then distributes the estate. Or, sometimes the property stays in trust and is distributed over a number of years. Now, it is true that many times a will is used without a revocable trust. In that case, the will is not a pour over will. It distributes all the property and inheritances according to what the will says. A cautionary tale from Pankauski. “If you are objecting to the pour over will, you may also have to object to the revocable trust.” That means a second lawsuit needs to be filed. But make sure you file the trust lawsuit in the proper place. Otherwise, your Florida trust lawsuit could be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction or improper venue. In that circumstance, you have try to revoke the will in probate. And you also have to file a separate trust lawsuit. To watch a free video about a trust lawsuit, click HERE. To read a Palm Beach appeals case on this subject, read Pasquale v. Loving. This opinion was issued from the 4th District Court of Appeal.

Requirements for a Valid Florida Will

Do you know what you need to make a valid will in Florida? Many times, sons and daughters read a will and say “How could have Mom or Dad cut me out of my inheritance?” In the past, Mom or Dad had you in their will repeatedly for years. And then….. nothing. What changed? Is that last will valid or not? These are good questions which heirs and family members often ask John Pankauski. Pankauski is a well known estate litigation lawyer who handles will contests and disputes throughout Florida. He leads a team of expert lawyers and appellate attorneys who handle will and trust lawsuits. So, if you want to read more about will contests or estate disputes, here are two things you can read. First, consider reading the requirements for a valid will under Florida Law. “Start with Chapter 732″ suggests Pankauski “and then go to Chapter 733, our Florida Probate Code. But you won’t find the words pour over will anywhere.” You can read all about Florida Will Law by clicking HERE. Here is the link for the Florida Probate Code. Second, if you really think you need to make a claim to a will or revoke probate or object to a will, consider reading Pankauski’s book on probate litigation.