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Monthly Archives: January 2014

Negligent Failure to Procure Insurance

Most think of insurance disputes as relating to the nature and extent of coverage (e.g., uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist) or how much of the policy limits should be paid. There are circumstances, however, when the incorrect insurance is obtained and a claim  exists against the insurance agent/broker. An insurance agent/broker who is tasked with […]

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St. Louis Trust Attorney

The most common way a trust is set up is that it is established for the settlor’s benefit during his/her lifetime and then upon his/her death it is distributed free of trust to the descendants. A trust can house most types of property, including real estate, stocks, security instruments, and even interests in businesses (e.g., […]

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Maintenance/Alimony Modifications

It’s not just child custody or child support orders that can be modified. Orders for spousal maintenance can also sometimes be modified with a Motion to Modify. The criteria for modifying an award of spousal maintenance are as follows: [a] showing of changed circumstances so substantial and continuing as to make the terms unreasonable […] […]

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Spendthrift Clauses: Trusts & Debts

One of the big misconceptions with a trust is that when property and assets are placed in a trust they are beyond the reach of creditors. This is not always the case. Generally, a judgment creditor of a beneficiary may, without court order, reach a beneficiary’s interest by attachment of present or future distributions to […]

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Co-trustees

While it’s much more common to have one trustee in charge of a trust, there are occasions when multiple trustees will serve jointly. From experience, it is often the case that a settlor/grantor (i.e., the person who creates the trust) will appoint co-trustees because the extent of the responsibilities calls for more than one person, […]

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New Trial

You prosecute/defend a case by seeing it through the motion to dismiss stage, discovery phase, summary judgment and then all the way through trial. You may be concerned or focused on an appeal, but under certain circumstances a new trial may be possible. A trial court can grant a new trial upon showing that there […]

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Equitable Estoppel

Estoppel is an equitable legal theory that is almost always injected into a lawsuit as a defense, though it is possible to see a plaintiff use it. While the law disfavors estoppel, Stenger v. Great Southern Sav. and Loan Ass’n, 677 S.W.2d 376, 383 (Mo. Ct. App. 1984), it exists to maintain consistency and honesty in […]

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Terminating/Ending a Conservatorship

A conservator is one appointed by a court to have the care and custody of the estate — i.e., finances, property, debt, etc. — of a minor or a disabled person. A “minor” is someone under the age of eighteen (18); a disabled person is generally  someone who is unable by reason of any physical or mental […]

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Enforcement of Promissory Notes

A promissory note is, in its broadest sense, a promise to repay money on certain terms and conditions. In business — particularly between banks and creditors — promissory notes are often bought and sold because there can be big money (and risk) in holding and collecting debt with interest. A deluge of legal issues can […]

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Offers of Judgment, Court Costs & Fees

Courts almost universally favor litigants reaching a settlement rather than thrusting a decision on them. To further this objective, several rules exist which encourage settlement. One such rule is the offer of judgment rule in Missouri Supreme Court Rule 77.04. In the context of litigation, fees usually refers to attorney fees and costs refer to […]

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