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What is the difference between an heir and a beneficiary?

Posted by Joel Beck | Nov 01, 2022 | 0 Comments

When preparing your estate plan or going through the probate process, you may hear the term “heir” or “beneficiary” with regard to inheritance. In TV shows and movies, they like to depict the heirs of the decedent inheriting from them automatically upon their death. In reality, however, this is not always the case.

What Is a Fiduciary?

Posted by Joel Beck | Oct 17, 2022 | 0 Comments

Whether you are preparing your own estate plan or probating a loved one's estate, you might notice a great deal of legal jargon that may or may not be hard to understand. It's easy for us to explain what certain terms mean for our clients when we sit down and talk about their estate plan, a...

How is the Reading of the Will Done in a Georgia Probate Case?

Posted by Joel Beck | Oct 03, 2022 | 0 Comments

You may have seen a movie or TV show once or twice that has portrayed court cases, interrogations, and my personal favorite, will readings! It usually goes like this: The family is gathered around the deceased patriarch's mansion library or attorney's office; the walls are paneled with dark wood, and everyone is dressed extravagantly (except for that one eccentric son wearing jeans and a t-shirt and trying to put his feet up on the table). You’ll then see a lawyer dressed in a 3-piece suit walk in with his brief case, sit behind the large wooden desk, pull out a file, and say, with some authority, "We will now read the will," which will later be followed up with the family fighting or being completely shocked that grandpa left his fortune to the nurse that was taking care of him.

Estate Planning: The Easy Way, or The Hard Way?

Posted by Joel Beck | Sep 08, 2022 | 0 Comments

Sometimes we do things the easy way, and sometimes we do them the hard way – whether by accident or by choice. Often, I have clients tell me that they want to make things as easy as possible for their family if something happens to them, such as incapacitation or death. That desire is the driving force that gets them into our office to design an estate plan to address their situation, concerns, and goals.

What Are Non-Probate Assets?

Posted by Joel Beck | Jul 26, 2022 | 0 Comments

For some, the probate process can be a daunting responsibility that must be undertaken after their loved one has died. Most people are unfamiliar with the process and may be unsure even where to begin. One of the most surprising things people learn while probating an estate is that not all assets are distributed through the probate process, but rather are distributed to persons outside of probate. These assets are referred to as “non-probate assets” while the assets that do go through probate are called “probate assets.”

What is the Difference Between Testate and Intestate Estates?

Posted by Joel Beck | Jul 12, 2022 | 0 Comments

Whether you are going through probate or doing your own estate planning, you might hear the terms, “testate” and “intestate” estate mentioned at some point in either process. To put it simply, “intestate” is a term used when someone dies without a will. Their estate will then be referred to as an “intestate” estate and the state will decide who will serve as the administrator of the estate and how assets shall be distributed after the decedent’s expenses are paid. On the other hand, if a person were to die testate, it means they died with a will.  In a testate estate, the will would set forth who should serve to administer the estate and have a plan as to how the assets should be distributed after all valid debts and bills have been paid.

Probate Terms You Should Know

Posted by Joel Beck | Jun 15, 2022 | 0 Comments

If you or someone you know is going through probate to settle the estate of a loved one, you will likely be exposed to some terms that you may have never seen before or don't understand. Probate can be a confusing process, but understanding what some of these terms mean may make the process easie...

What happens to my airline miles and hotel points when I die?

Posted by Joel Beck | May 25, 2022 | 0 Comments

            It's no secret that people dream about their summer vacation when they are slammed at work or have a long list of to-dos for the week. In fact, some people might even start planning for their vacations in the winter. However, something people don't normally plan for, or even think abo...


Posted by Joel Beck | May 05, 2022 | 0 Comments

          When planning for what happens to our assets after we die, we must look at our family and decide who gets what, if anything at all. Not all our family situations are one-size-fits-all and, in some instances, creating a will is not a simple task to bear when making these decisions. This ...

How Much Can I Give Away Without Incurring Gift Tax Issues?

Posted by Joel Beck | Mar 22, 2022 | 0 Comments

Last week we discussed the estate tax, and learned that individuals can shield $12.6 million dollars of their estate from the federal tax at their death. This is good news for the majority of folks whose estate totals far less than $12 million. However, some people prefer to give away portions of...

Do I Need to Worry About Estate Tax Issues?

Posted by Joel Beck | Mar 08, 2022 | 0 Comments

You may have heard the old saying, “Only two things are guaranteed in life; death and taxes.” It's a pretty safe bet that these two realities rank pretty far down the list of your favorite things to think about, but think about them you must, especially when considering your estate plan. Everyo...

Best of Gwinnett 2021

Posted by Unknown | Feb 14, 2022 | 0 Comments

Thanks to you and your support, Peach State Wills & Trusts is excited to announce that we have once again been named among the best estate planning firms in Gwinnett for 2021 by Gwinnett Magazine's Best of Gwinnett. This is our third consecutive year to receive this honor, and we owe it all t...

The Truth About Revocable Living Trusts: What They Can't Do

Posted by Joel Beck | Feb 08, 2022 | 0 Comments

The Truth About Revocable Living Trusts: What They CAN'T Do We discussed previously the proliferation of misinformation regarding Revocable Living Trusts, and why you should carefully do you own research. In the next few blog posts, we are going to discuss some of the most common misconceptions ...

The Truth About Revocable Living Trusts

Posted by Joel Beck | Jan 26, 2022 | 0 Comments

What is the most misunderstood element of estate planning? In our experience, the answer hands down is the revocable living trust. Why is there so much confusion surrounding revocable living trusts, or RLTs? One of the main reasons is simply a widespread misunderstanding and ignorance of estate ...

How do I protect my minor children in my estate plan?

Posted by Joel Beck | Dec 14, 2021 | 0 Comments

Many people think of estate planning as something to be done later in life, after the kids are grown and out of the house and you're nearing retirement. While folks at this stage of life certainly should make sure their planning is complete, we recommend considering your estate plan much earlie...

End of Year Estate Planning Checkup

Posted by Joel Beck | Nov 30, 2021 | 0 Comments

We can hardly believe it, but 2021 is drawing to a close. This is a great time to review your estate plan and consider what planning needs you might need to take care of in 2022 to protect yourself and your loved ones. Take some time in the coming weeks to ask yourself these questions… Do I ...

Vote for Us!

Posted by Joel Beck | Oct 07, 2021 | 0 Comments

It's that time of year again! Voting has opened for Gwinnett Magazine's Best of Gwinnett 2021, and Peach State Wills and Trusts needs your help. Thanks to you, we were voted a Best of Gwinnett estate planning law firm in 2019 and 2020. With your support, we're hoping to hold onto th...

Can I Have an Electronic Will in Georgia?

Posted by Joel Beck | Oct 06, 2021 | 0 Comments

Technology has revolutionized our society. Even in the last two years, we have seen more and more go digital. From school to work to doctor's appointments and even grocery shopping, many things are now done online from the comfort of our own homes. In an increasingly paperless world, clients so...

Does a Power of Attorney Work After Someone Dies?

Posted by Joel Beck | Sep 21, 2021 | 0 Comments

A Power of Attorney is an essential document that ensures one's assets, bank accounts, and other financial affairs can be managed by a trusted loved one. But what about after the principal of that POA dies? Can the agent under the POA still manage his or her affairs? The answer is no. The au...

4 Mistakes That Could Invalidate Your Will

Posted by Joel Beck | Sep 07, 2021 | 0 Comments

Once your Will has been properly signed and witnessed, your estate plan is officially in place.  You don't need to take it to the courthouse or file it with the state. There's no waiting period for it to take effect.  It won't expire. It is valid, and will remain valid… Unless something happ...

Don't Leave Your Trust Unfunded

Posted by Joel Beck | Aug 24, 2021 | 0 Comments

We've discussed the advantages of revocable living trusts before. While (contrary to popular belief) they aren't necessary for everyone here in Georgia, RLTs may be of benefit to those who own property outside of Georgia, have blended families, concerns about asset protection for children, or p...

Estate Planning Attorneys vs. Probate Attorneys

Posted by Joel Beck | Aug 10, 2021 | 0 Comments

What is the difference between an estate planning attorney and a probate attorney? Many people use the terms interchangeably, but while some attorneys may handle both estate planning and probate matters, these are actually two distinct practice areas. At Peach State Wills and Trusts, we prac...

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Contact Us Today

At Peach State Wills and Trusts, a division of The Beck Law Firm, LLC, we're committed to answering your questions about wills, trusts, powers of attorney, healthcare directives, uncontested probate, and business planning issues in Georgia.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment.