Category Archives: Estate Planning

June 24, 2022 Weekly Round Up

We’re back with another agricultural law weekly round up.  Here are some of the stories in the news over the past couple of weeks. *October will be big for ag law at the US Supreme Court.  The United States Supreme Court will have their hands full of ag law in October.  The Court will hear arguments in Sackett v. U.S., a case questioning the proper scope of “waters of the United States” as applied to wetlands under the Clean Water Act on October 3.  A week later on October… Read More →

June 10, 2022 Weekly Round Up

It’s been a bit since our last Weekly Round Up post, but we’re back! Part of the reason for the delay was a recent trip I took with my family to the Nugget All-American sheep show and sale in Reno, NV.  Because I’m a mom and bragging on our kids is what we do, I’m happy to report that both kiddos won banners.  Braun’s lamb was Reserve Supreme Champion Wether and Champion Dorset Wether and Harper’s lamb was Reserve Speck Wether.  My family also raised the Reserve Supreme… Read More →

Texas Court Considers Principal Place of Residence Requirement for Medicaid

A recent Austin Court of Appeals decision in Texas Health and Human Services Commission v. Estate of Clyde L. Burt, answers an important Medicaid qualification question.  Is an applicant required to reside in a home prior to seeking nursing care in order for the home to be considered an excludable resource  under the Medicaid rules? [Read opinion here.] Background Clyde and Dorothy Burt bought a home in 1974 and lived there until December 2010 at which time they sold the home to their daughter, Linda Wallace, and moved into… Read More →

April 29, 2022 Weekly Round Up

It is hard to believe we have reached the end of April, but here we are!  Lots of agricultural law news happening around the country. *Article highlights nuance with 10% cap on residence homestead tax.  My colleague, Dr. Blake Bennett, recently published a fact sheet looking at a nuance within the Texas Property Code related to the 10% cap on the yearly increase for residence homestead taxes in Texas.  The Texas Property Code places a 10% limitation on the amount a County Appraisal District may increase the appraised… Read More →

April 15, 2022 Weekly Round Up

It has been another busy couple of weeks in the agricultural law world.  Here are some of the stories in the news. *Important property tax deadlines approaching for Texas landowners.  Don’t forget there are important property tax deadlines this month for many Texas landowners receiving open space tax valuation. This includes filing an application for ag use, open space, or wildlife management valuation, changing land from open space to wildlife management use, and any new purchasers of land who intend to continue receiving open space valuation. [Read more here.]… Read More →

Are Your End of Life Documents in Order?

Recently, I’ve gotten a number of requests from folks wondering what end-of-life documents they should have in place and whether there are forms they can use in order to do so.  For Texas residents, there are actually a number of statutory forms that can be used for many of the end-of-life documents one should have in place. Importantly, understand these are merely end-of-life documents.  There are many other considerations to consider as part of a broader estate plan for which statutory forms do not exist.  This includes wills,… Read More →

Case Outlines Texas Requirements for Executing Valid Will

An opinion from the Corpus Christi Court of Appeals last year is a great review of the legal requirements to execute a valid will in Texas. Background Pedro Vera passed away in August 2018.  In October 2018, his former neighbor, Mr. Sanchez, filed an application for probate of Mr. Vera’s holographic (handwritten) will.  Sanchez produced a holographic will purportedly drafted and signed by Mr. Vera on November 25, 2010, during a Thanksgiving dinner. Mr. Vera’s brother, Hector, contested the probate application, claiming that the signature on the holographic… Read More →

Estate & Succession Planning Survey – We Need Your Help!

Dr. Justin Benavidez and I are working on a cool project sponsored by Texas Corn Producers.  We are conducting an anonymous survey to look at the current estate and business planning situation for Texas farmers, ranchers, and rural landowners.  We will use the information gathered to plan programming and resources going forward.   For this to be successful, we need your help!  Please take a couple of minutes and complete our online survey by clicking here.   If you’d prefer a paper copy, we are glad to send you one along… Read More →

December 17, 2021 Weekly Round Up

Here we are with our final Weekly Round Up of 2021!   It has been quite the year. We will have our annual nationwide and Texas-specific year-in-review blog posts coming up over the next couple of weeks, and we recently released an Ag Law in the Field Podcast episode recapping the year from an ag law perspective here. Here are some recent news stories that may be of interest. *EPA considering modifications to dicamba approval, but offers no timeline.  A senior regulatory specialist with EPA stated that “the agency… Read More →

Texas Corn Producers Successful Succession Resources Available!

Earlier this year, Texas Corn Producers asked me to work with them on a really important project.  Successful Succession is focused on providing information and resources for farm and ranch families to plan for the future.  We worked together to create a resource guide and a three-hour video series discussing issues related to estate and succession planning for farm and ranch families.  Thanks to grant funding from the Southern Extension Risk Management Education Center, these resources are available for free on the Texas Corn Producers website. These issues… Read More →