Is This Deed Valid? When (and How) to Challenge a Deed

mortgage deed and keys

A deed is something you probably don’t think much about until you have to buy, sell, or otherwise transfer real property. A deed is the legal instrument that transfers ownership of that property from one party to another. So when you are the person granting the deed (the grantor), and especially when you’re the person […]

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I Was Awarded Part of My Ex’s Retirement Plan—How Do I Get It?

Documents about qualified domestic relations order.

Divorce involves the division of marital property, and some property is easier to divide than others. The joint bank account can be closed and the contents split right down the middle. Much more challenging, for a variety of reasons, is the division of most retirement plans. If you or your spouse have an employer-provided retirement […]

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Estate Planning for Unmarried Partners

Estate Plan Documents

Just about every adult needs an estate plan, but few need one more than unmarried partners. Many people assume estate planning needs to be a priority only for those who are wealthy or have young children. Those are certainly important reasons to create an estate plan, but they are far from the only ones. The […]

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Should I Tell My Divorce Attorney About My Affair?

Sad wife sitting on a couch at home with a broken picture

How are divorce attorneys like bartenders and hairstylists? We often get to hear secrets our clients don’t share with most other people. But unlike bartenders and hairstylists, hearing secrets—or not hearing them—can affect our ability to do our jobs well. You might share a secret with your bartender because you’ve been seeing him every week […]

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For Sale By Owner: Why You Might Need a Lawyer

Home for sale by owner real estate sign hanging from a wooden post in the front yard.

An increasing number of people are deciding to sell their house without the help of a real estate agent. These “for sale by owner,” or FSBO, transactions, offer sellers a number of advantages. For one thing, when you do a FSBO, you, as the seller, have total control over all aspects of the sale. You […]

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Do You Need a Power of Attorney for an Adult Child?

Dad online with his adult daughter

For the first eighteen years of our children’s lives, you have the authority to make all major decisions for them, including financial and medical ones. So accustomed are you to this state of affairs, that it may not occur to you that when they wake up on their eighteenth birthday, the legal landscape has shifted. […]

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How Divorce Affects Your Social Security Benefits

Social security card with wedding bands

Divorce carries with it a number of financial considerations: will you stay in the marital home, let your spouse take it, or sell it? Will there be spousal support? How will you divide up your retirement accounts? But one thing many people fail to think about is Social Security benefits, possibly because during the divorce […]

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Estate Planning for Pets (It’s Not as Weird as You Think)

An orange cat chewing on one hundred dollar bills

If the phrase “estate planning for pets” calls to mind pampered heiresses with spoiled, fluffy dogs, or old ladies with wall-to-wall cats in their apartments, you probably think estate planning for pets is absurd or frivolous. But imagine for a moment the elderly widower whose dog has been a constant companion since his wife died, […]

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Should You Waive a Home Inspection When Buying a House?

Building Inspector completing an inspection form on clipboard beside new build construction

For many people, buying a home is the biggest financial investment they will ever make. In a residential real estate purchase, you want to be sure that you are paying a fair price and getting what you expect. Part of the process, typically, is a home inspection. Are there ever circumstances in which you should […]

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Michigan Friend of the Court: What You Need to Know

Family law and glasses on a court table.

The family division of the Michigan circuit court system is responsible for hearing family law and domestic cases, including divorce, child support and child custody. When people enter into a family law matter in Michigan, they often imagine that they will have the opportunity to give the judge all the information that they feel is […]

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