Frequently Asked Questions
What is Real Estate Law?
Real Estate Law governs who may own and use the land. It is the law that governs how people acquires property and what they can do with the property that they own. Some of the areas covered by Real Estate law include buying or selling a home, landlord and tenant law, foreclosure, land use, construction, financing, and title & boundary disputes.
Why do I need a Real Estate attorney when buying or selling a property?
While not legally required in most states, it is often worth it to spend money on a Real Estate attorney. Attorneys make sure all the proper paperwork is drawn up and filed with the authorities. They do title searches and can negotiate, should a search present a problem. Ideally, buyers and sellers should be represented by a real estate attorney to protect their rights and watch their interests.
What is the difference between a Real Estate agent and a Real Estate attorney?
Very few lawyers professionally sell real estate. They might not know the neighborhood, be able to prepare a comparative market analysis, or negotiate for repairs. While it is not a hat they often wear, they are capable of providing different services. A Real Estate agent, on the other hand, is not able to provide legal advice without breaking the law. They cannot answer legal questions pertaining to the real estate deal, even if they know the answer. An attorney, however is licensed to provide legal advice and a better course of action pertaining to the legality of a real estate deal.
What is a will?
A will is a legal document that coordinates the distribution of your assets after death and can appoint guardians for minors. It allows you to communicate your wishes clearly and precisely. It is advisable to work closely with an attorney to create and update your will.
What is a trust?
A trust is an arrangement in which one party holds property for another party's benefit. The property owner never gives up control of their assets, but the trustee becomes the owner for legal purposes. The function of all trusts is to shield the asset owner from certain legal proceedings and tax exposure.
What is Estate Planning?
Your estate is comprised of everything you own - Car, home, investments, checkings & savings accounts, real estate, life insurance, personal possessions. No matter how large or modest, everyone has an estate. Estate planning is controlling how those things are given to organizations or people you care about. Estate planning is making a plan in advance and naming whom you want to receive the things you own after you die.
Do I need a will?
Yes. When you die without a will, you leave important decisions up to a local court and your state's laws. You will not have a say in who receives or house or any of your assets. This can become a complicated process for your loved ones after your passing.
What is Probate?
Probate is the legal process that takes place after someone dies. It makes sure that property and possessions are given to the right people and any taxes/debts are paid in full. If there is a will, the court checks that it is signed and valid, and makes sure that the will is enacted as directed.
Should I hire a lawyer to help me draft my will, or can I do it by myself?
There is nothing scarier than to think of not being their for your loved ones. With the help of an experienced attorney, creating a will/trust can provide you and your family some financial security and peace of mind.