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Avoiding Probate in Missouri

Going through probate can be time consuming and expensive, so it’s a good idea to do everything you can to avoid probate or to streamline the probate process. With a little planning, avoiding probate in Missouri is possible, and our skilled probate attorney can show you how.

The most obvious things to do to avoid probate include:

  • Work with a professional to create a living trust
  • Make your financial accounts “payable on death”
  • Make your securities “transferable on death”
  • Establish joint ownership of real estate and other property
  • Create transfer-on-death deeds for real estate
  • Create transfe [...]

How to declare bankruptcy on credit cards

Falling behind on credit card debt can leave you feeling overwhelmed and trapped. Large credit card debt causes a domino effect of cascading problems. First, if your credit cards are maxed out, then just making minimum payments can mean lots of money, which leaves less for day-to-day living expenses. You can also incur late fees and over-the-limit fees, which cause the total amount you owe to keep climbing. If you fall far enough behind, your debt can go into collections, and you face constant harassing phone calls from collections agencies. Finally, overdue debt can be hard on your credit score, causing it to tumble.

If you face overwhelming debt, it may be time to declare [...]

When Should I Update My Estate Plan?

Creating an estate plan is one of the most important things you can do to protect and provide for your family in the future.  With a little bit of time and a skilled estate planning attorney, you can create a customized trust or will and estate plan that anticipates your unique needs and leverages the most advantageous use of your assets.

Whether it’s by providing for heirs, avoiding onerous taxes, overseeing property and real estate or creating charitable giving opportunities, an estate plan can lay out all of your current and future wishes in a neat and comprehensive document. To ensure the bes [...]

How do I create an LLC in Missouri?

Choosing the right business structure is an important decision. By researching your options and considering your future business goals, you can make the best choice. There are currently about 127,000 active LLCs in Missouri. If you’re wondering how to create an LLC in this state, read on for important ideas.

The first thing to do is hire a qualified business attorney who can partner with you to efficiently and comprehensively complete paperwork required by the state to create an LLC.  Leveraging a skilled attorney’s past experience can help you avoid pitfalls and benefit from his legal acumen.  To [...]

How Do You Declare a Business Bankruptcy?

Whether due to declining sales, increased business competition, or difficult economic headwinds, there are many reasons why business owners can struggle with mounting and unmanageable debt. Creditors may be calling, and banks are pressuring you to repay loans. If this sounds like your situation, it may be time to declare a business bankruptcy. Rather than being a discouraging end to your business, it can actually provide a fresh start for you and your family. Whether you dissolve the business altogether or simply restructure its debt, there are multiple bankruptcy options to explore.

At Birk Law Firm, you can ask our bankruptcy [...]

Do You Need a Lawyer to Dissolve Your Business?

“Do you need a lawyer to dissolve your business?” This question is frequently raised by business owners as they make the difficult decision to cease operations and move in a new direction.

Honestly, closing a business is complicated. There are always multiple “stakeholders.” It is important to ensure that each is treated appropriately. Also, as a business owner, you must abide by all relevant state and local laws, file very specific paperwork, and position yourself well for the future. So, do you need a lawyer to dissolve your business? Quite simply, yes!

Working with a reputable business attorney can help you dissolve your business efficiently and [...]

Can I File Bankruptcy Without My Spouse?

One partner can file bankruptcy without their spouse in Missouri; and in many cases, a partner can do so without affecting the other spouse’s credit record. However, even though an individual bankruptcy may eliminate the filing spouse’s liability for jointly-held/co-signed debts, this does not stop creditors from pursuing the non-filing spouse for repayment of these debts. In other words, your filing individual bankruptcy does not protect your spouse from co-signed or jointly incurred debts.

For this reason, it may be best to file for bankruptcy as a couple. It is also important to remember that some debts cannot typically be eliminated through bankruptcy, including taxes [...]

Steps to Start a Business

If you’re thinking about starting a business in Missouri, then you’ve chosen the right place. The latest U.S. Census data shows that Missouri leads the nation in creating new businesses! New business start-up numbers are surging by more than 16 percent, double the number of any other state in the country, according to the Missouri Department of Economic Development.

What Are the Steps to Start a Business?

There are some important steps to start a business, and you want to make sure you consider all of these before jumping into the deep end and getting overwhelmed. A wise, thoughtful approach can prevent headaches later. Having a great idea is the first require [...]

Can a Beneficiary Sue a Trustee?

Yes, a beneficiary can sue a trustee. But a beneficiary must prove that a trustee has breached their fiduciary duty. A beneficiary cannot mount a successful challenge simply because he/she has a personal grudge against the trustee or because he/she simply feels the trust is unfair as it was created by the trust owner.

To mount a legal challenge, a beneficiary must show that there was malfeasance, conflict of interest or incompetence on the part of the trustee.

There’s a lot to know about trusts and estate disputes, and challenging a trustee is rarely something you want to do on your own. With the help of

Do You Have to Do Probate When Someone Dies?

Losing a loved one or family member is a terrible time, filled with grief and loss. Not only are you hurting inside, but you also have to deal with funeral details and other legal matters. This is especially true if the person died without a valid will and their estate must go through probate.

If you’re wondering whether you have to do probate when someone dies, the answer is “sometimes.” In Missouri, if a person’s estate is very small, then the law will allow you to skip probate in favor of a simplified process. Otherwise, you’ll go through probate, though this is significantly easier and quicker when the deceased person has a valid will or estate plan with clear d [...]