Category - Basic Stuff

Utah Law Can Prevent Trust Litigation

March 6, 2018

One of the main reasons people choose to use a trust for their estate planning is the desire to avoid probate (i.e., court proceedings) and thereby preserve privacy.  In the normal course, there is nothing that prevents trust litigation.  Happily, Utah has a law designed to do just that. Let’s first review the fact that […]

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top 10 reasons hire an attorney

March 5, 2018

I recently saw an article with this title.  In this age of DIY, folks often wonder where to draw the line between hiring a professional and utilizing Google to gain the requisite expertise to do their own work. The article is found on, so there is a distinct bias towards hiring an attorney.  Even so […]

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Certificate of Trust and the difference between what a bank may request and what it actually needs

March 3, 2018

Just because a bank requests information, that does not necessarily mean the bank is entitled to receive such information.  By way of introduction, I spent several years working directly for some of the world’s largest banks while I was employed at a large firm in downtown Chicago.  Since then, I have continued to interact with […]

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You don’t know what you don’t know.

February 23, 2018

This is true for all of us in many areas of our life and concerning a good many subjects. Consider a hypothetical situation where a man walks into his accountant’s office to ask a few questions.  (Hopefully, that man was courteous enough to make an appointment, rather than just dropping in.)  This gentleman owns a small […]

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What does it mean to be a managing member of an LLC?

February 22, 2018

As the name indicates, the managing member is the manager of a member-managed LLC. Please note that the organizational and management structure of limited liability companies (LLCs) varies greatly.  Some LLCs are single-member (i.e., only one owner) and some are multi-member entities.  There are LLCs which are member managed, some which are manager-managed and then […]

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What is a living trust and why should you care?

February 16, 2018

This is a common question dealt with nicely by a Huffington Post article by Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, CFP. Among the items covered by this helpful online article are the following: basic estate planning starts with a Will, which covers the appointing of a guardian for minor children and provides a very basic framework for asset distribution upon […]

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Estate planning mistakes to avoid (U.S. News article)

January 3, 2018

It is always better to learn from the mistakes of others than to make the same mistakes yourself. This is certainly true when it comes to estate planning–wise folks will learn from and avoid very common mistakes made by far too many individuals. Often, these are tragic and very costly mistakes. A few months ago, […]

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Should I Sign a Personal Guarantee for a Lease?

December 27, 2017

Maybe. It very much depends on the facts and circumstances, as is often the case with these types of matters. First, let’s consider what a personal guaranty is and why it is used. A personal guaranty (or guarantee) is a contract signed by an individual (the guarantor) whereby such person is agreeing to be responsible/liable […]

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Do I need an estate plan?

December 21, 2017

Yes. If you have anyone or anything you care about, you need an estate plan. Perhaps a more helpful question, then, is what type of estate plan do you need, and why? There is a good article on dealing with this very subject and many of the same considerations I would advise my clients […]

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Pharos Law Podcast–is a single member LLC required to have an operating agreement?

December 11, 2017

No blog post gets more views than the one about whether a single member LLC is required to have an operating agreement. CLICK HERE to access that blog post. It’s a valid question, and one could reasonably conclude that a sole owner of a limited liability company should not be required to have his or

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