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Case No. 284

A Family’s Heritage Leaves the Family

Our deep respect for the land is the heritage of generations of hard working Texas families who spent their lives caring for and maintaining it for their children, and their children’s children. It is more than just a single person’s estate, but an irreplaceable legacy safeguarded for a family’s future to build on and grow. But what happens when for all our good intentions the State steps in and threatens that heritage? Well that’s exactly what happens when land is not protected against easily avoidable errors or misunderstandings of the law.

Take Old Man Dan for instance, his family held his land for generations, his father worked the ranch and his father before him, but now it’s just Old Man Dan. Dan’s wife is sick and needs care, while his son Take Off Tim left to find work in California. When Dan passed away, his will left everything to his son, who wasn’t interested in the land, and continued on his life in California. Years later Tim, unmarried with no kids, passed away with no will, which resulted in the State stepping in to probate his estate, leaving the family ranch which had previously been in the family for generations going to Tim’s mother who was still sick and now in hospice. Once she passed away her will devised all of her estate including the once family ranch to go to the wife’s out of state nieces and nephews who later sold the land and divided the profits. Something a family built over the course of many lifetimes now irreversibly divided and sold.

This happens all too often, the facts may vary, but the results are the same. Estates built with the purpose to leave something behind for the next generation so that they may have a better start than those before them. But these estates are only as strong as the instruments that safeguard them. That is why it is important to honor your family’s past and consider your estate plan, find out if a family trust or limited family partnership is right for you. Visit The Parker Law Firm today to learn more and find out what best suits your family’s needs.

 

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