Visit us for tips to make and keep your estate planning, wills, trusts, real estate, and business succession planning up-to-date. Topics on everything from delegating health care and financial decision-making authority during disability and other family/medical-related issues, to current state and federal tax laws that should be considered when forming or managing a family business.

Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

The Importance of Having Powers of Attorney – And the Disaster of Not Having Them

Clients often ask me “Why do I need a power of attorney …. I am not sick, and I don’t want anyone to have that kind of control over me or my finances.” A “Power of Attorney” (or POA) is a document in which you appoint a specific person the ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

Many clients have called me and expressed a great dread of something which they have heard of, and seem to fear …. Probate.

What is Probate? In Tennessee, probate is a process under state law by which a deceased person’s family (or beneficiaries) may present their loved one’s will to a local court to formally open an estate. The court then oversees the gathering of the estate’s assets, the payment of any claims ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

Estate Planning: It’s for the Children (of all kinds)

In Tennessee, a person can leave his estate pretty much to whoever he wants.* Of course, when a person dies without a will, the State of Tennessee provides for how property is divided. See the blog article entitled, "When Aunt Becky Had No Will." If a person has no will, ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

Disinheritance in Tennessee

An occasional question that comes up in drafting a will, is whether the person making a will can disinherit a child. The simple answer is that in Tennessee, parents can disinherit a son or daughter. No reason needs to be stated in the will. Some think they must leave a ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

What are the Duties of a Conservator?

In Tennessee, a Court may appoint a Conservator for a person who lacks mental capacity to handle his / her own affairs. But what exactly does a Conservator DO and what are the responsibilities of the job? There are two types of authority which the Court will normally grant to ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

What is a Conservatorship?

All adults in Tennessee are legally considered to be competent and to have the ability (or capacity) to make their own decisions – about their finances and their own medical issues. However, sometimes an adult can suffer disability through a tragic injury, disease, or (in many cases) through the aging ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

Potential Legal Traps for Executors Distributing Firearms from an Estate

In Tennessee, like most states, estates frequently include the decedent’s firearms. There are legal concerns for the executor1 concerning distributing the firearms to beneficiaries or heirs of an estate. These can involve a beneficiary who is disqualified from possessing a firearm, or too young to take possession. There may even ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

Estate Planning Update 2017

No one can predict the future, but it appears likely that we’ll see some major changes the federal estate tax law following President-elect Trump’s inauguration on January 20th. A repeal of the federal estate tax has been discussed, along with what I’ll call an alternative system whereby certain unrealized capital ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS

Better Safe Than Sorry…Always a Good Idea to File Form 706

No one has a crystal ball, but that does not mean we should not keep our eyes and ears open. Given the drama surrounding the 2016 presidential election, there is one certainty…there could be some MAJOR changes in the federal estate tax regardless of who wins the election. Mr. Trump’s ...
Frantz, McConnell & Seymour | FMS


What happens when a beneficiary kills the person from whom they would inherit property? Tennessee has what is sometimes called a “slayer statute” that addresses this issue: Tenn. Code Annotated §31-1-106 Any person who kills, or conspires with another to kill, or procures to be killed, any other person from ...

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