Boyes, Farina & Matwiczyk

561.694.7979

Notables

Discovery on the Internet of Things (“IoT”) and Probate Litigation

…What does the phrase “Internet of Things” really mean?  The Internet of Things, or “IoT”, refers to the connection of everyday objects or devices to the internet, like wearable devices (such as Fitbits, Garmins, and Apple Watches), home electronics (such as Ring doorbell cameras, Nest cameras and home thermostats), devices that use natural language assistants (such as Alexa and Siri), Smart TVs, computer technology integrated into cars (such as the Tesla), and many others.

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De La Riva v. Chavez, — So.3d — 2020 WL 5372283 (Fla. 4th DCA Sept. 9, 2020)

To sue an estate, there needs to be a personal representative.  An “estate” cannot be a party to a lawsuit.  This concept was again explained by the Court in the recent decision of De La Riva v. Chaves, — So. 3d —, 2020 WL 532283 (Fla. 4thDCA Sept.

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Teachers and Estate Planning in the COVID Era

…School districts across the country are now faced with further unprecedented tests – beginning a new school year in the middle of the COVID-19 global pandemic.  With millions of confirmed cases in the United States, including hundreds of thousands of fatalities, it is undoubtedly concerning for teachers to go back into the classroom in fear of their own health and safety, even with some degree of remote or distance learning. 

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Reimbursement for Estate Related Expenses: Negedly v. Smith, 286 So. 3d 341 (Fla. 5th DCA 2019)

…After the proper presentation of claims against a decedent’s estate, it is then a personal representative’s duty to pay valid claims to the extent of the funds and assets of the estate which he or she has in his or her hands, subject, of course, to the decedent’s debts.

It is a personal representative’s obligation to ascertain the propriety and existence of the decedent’s debts and pay (and/or settle) those debts.

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Estate Planning for New Parents

…Amid buying baby clothes, diapers, and toys, setting up a nursery, and managing the sleepless nights of new parenthood, estate planning may not be on the list of priorities for new parents.  What about considering how a child’s everyday needs would be met if they pass away: making sure they have well-balanced meals, seeing doctors for checkups, and getting a good education? 

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Partner John Farina Receives AV Preeminent Highest Rating from Martindale-Hubbell

…Partner John Farina is once again a recipient of the prestigious “AV Preeminent” peer review rating from Martindale-Hubbell. The “AV Preeminent” rating Mr. Farina has held since 1995 is the highest level of professional excellence and ethical standards an attorney can receive from the national attorney peer review rating service. The rating signifies that an attorney’s colleagues and the judiciary perceive him to be at the pinnacle of professional success.

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Anderson v. Letosky — So.3d — (Fla. 2d DCA May 27, 2020), 2020 WL 2745559

…Does renting a room in a homestead property destroy the unique protections of a Florida homesteaded property?  The Second District Court of Appeal said no. Homestead property which is rented to tenants loses protection from creditors (and therefore the homestead exemptions) if the rented portion contains completely separate living quarters or common areas, such as separate living rooms and kitchens, and can be divided by imaginary horizontal or vertical lines, such as duplexes and triplexes.

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Soldatich v. Jones, 290 So. 2d 497 (Fla. 4th DCA January 22, 2020)

Florida guardianship lawyers often encounter cases involving financial exploitation of the elderly or exploitation of a vulnerable adult. Attorneys receive calls from concerned friends or relatives regarding an elderly loved one being financially exploited or abused. What can you do, and how to know when you need an experienced guardianship lawyer?

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Reverse Mortgages May Be an Issue for Your Heirs

…A reverse mortgage may initially seem to be a good way to convert home equity into immediate cash, and without the need for making monthly mortgage payments. Before considering a reverse mortgage, however, you should consider speaking with your accountant, financial advisor, and estate planning attorney to fully evaluate the tax and estate ramifications.

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Bill Boyes Named to 2020 Lawyers of Distinction

…Partner Bill Boyes has been selected to the 2020 Lawyers of Distinction list. Lawyers of Distinction award winners represent the top 10% of attorneys in the United States and are chosen for their excellence in the practice of law through a rigorous evaluation and screening process led by the Lawyers of Distinction selection committee, which utilizes a U.S.

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