Samuel B. Ledwitz

The Slayer Statute

“Oh you are an Attorney, I have a question or two for you…?” July 4th BBQ’s and other social events are always a fun time to gather and talk to people you haven’t seen for awhile.  Some people talk about their kids, jobs, and vacations.  And then there are the others.  These people find out what you do for a living and then ask you law school finals questions.

New Office Location in Palos Verdes

New Palos Verdes Office We are happy to announce the opening of our new Palos Verdes office. Located in the Palos Verdes Twin Towers at: 609 Deep Valley Dr, Suite 200 Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274 (310) 316-2400 Map and Directions We are conveniently located throughout the Los Angeles area with offices in Torrance, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Pasadena, Palos Verdes and Costa Mesa. Please visit the individual location pages for information on parking, directions and more about each of our offices. We have planned an continued  expansion to meet increased demand and provide additional convenience to our existing and new clients. As the new offices open, we will let our clients in those areas know if a closer office is available to them. If you have any question, please do not hesitate to contact any of our locations during business hours, 8am–5pm Monday through Friday. Practice Areas Estate Planning Estate planning is the process of establishing a Trust, Will, Durable Power of Attorney, and other related documents during your lifetime. Estate Administration Our firm helps Trustees and Executors comply with the many duties associated with the administration of an Estate. Probate Probate is the legal proceeding supervised by the Superior Court used to transfer title to assets when a person is deceased. Estate Litigation When the need arises to challenge, defend, or enforce a Will or Trust, our Lawyers will represent you in all legal proceedings. Advanced Estate Planning Families with substantial estates require additional strategies beyond a typical Estate Plan to reduce and offset Estate Tax liabilities.   Conservatorship When a person becomes incapable of managing their...

A SHORT LIST FOR WHY TRUSTS ARE MORE ADVANTAGEOUS THAN A WILL

    1. A living trust brings all of your assets together under one single estate plan with ONE set of instructions. This arrangement makes your wishes easier to carry out. Trusts are designed to facilitate the distribution of your estate in that it will be simplified, unambiguous, and clear-cut. Provisions made to ensure the correct titling of your assets/beneficiary designations from your retirement savings plans and life insurance policies are given the highest priority. This preemptive action guards against legal contests and family squabbles that can easily erupt due to poor estate planning. 2. A clearly written and legally correct living trust is a private matter which is not obligated to be a part of the public record, plus they are not easily prone to litigation (as wills frequently are). Probate is a court supervised set of procedures that are mandated by law to be carried out in public. Disappointed or disinherited heirs are free to retain counsel to contest the validity of your will, and to call into question your state of mind when you signed/executed it. In addition, opportunists with varying motivations and self-interests can gain easy access to your family’s personal and financial information. This results in unnecessary expenses, animosity, and delays in settling your estate. Having a trust in place bypasses this very real possibility entirely. 3. A trust can help you avoid court interference should you become incapacitated. Any reasonable person would much rather have their long-term care and assets managed privately by those they know and trust. Without having appointed a trustee/attorney beforehand, the probate court must become involved and appoint a...

BE SKEPTICAL WHEN GETTING AN EMAIL OR PHONE CALL FROM THE I.R.S.

In their never-ending pursuit with finding new ways to scare and defraud honest taxpayers, criminals are now employing a new scam. This one involves reaching out to citizens (either by telephone or via the internet), identifying themselves as I.R.S. agents, and making baseless criminal allegations demanding immediate payment of taxes owed. Once more, many scammers have been able to modify Caller I.D. readouts and in using the official federal agency’s logo embedded within their fraudulent emails in order to pull off this deception. This trick is currently being carried out across the United States, and has needlessly stressed out and swindled a large number of middle class families and retirees. According to the Internal Revenue Service, agents do not initially contact taxpayers either by phone or by email regarding a tax matter. Instead, residents are first notified by regular mail. Only after someone has been formally contacted by traditional methods do they confer electronically. If you or a loved one receives any type of phone call or email like this, the first step in taking action is to contact your local I.R.S. field office. Their number can be found in the white pages, or online. Second, you can notify the U.S. Treasury Inspectors at (800) 366-4484 and provide them with as much relevant information as you can. Another option to take in fighting back is to simply email: phishing@irs.gov and copy/paste the suspect email message. Lastly, the I.R.S. recommends that you also contact the Federal Trade Commission and activate a consumer complaint by filing an “I.R.S. telephone scam” report. Their main website is:...

Colonel (CA) Martin Ledwitz Honored by the The California Air Force Association (CAFA)

California Air Force Association 2014 Annual Convention: Awards to California Air National and California State Military Reserve Personnel and Units The California Air Force Association (CAFA) held its annual convention from 14 to 16 August 2014 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. At the luncheon awards ceremony for CAFA members on 16 August, Colonel (CA) Martin Ledwitz was awarded the new CAFA Distinguished Service Award and placed in the new CAFA Hall of Fame with other inductees. Captain (CA) Eric Van Der Heide was awarded the Meritorious Service Award. In addition, Ledwitz was re-elected the CAFA Area 3 (Southern California) President, and also named the CAFA State Vice President. Van Der Heide was elected the CAFA Area 3 Vice President. The military awards ceremony held that evening saw awards presented to the following California Air NG and Air CSMR units and personnel: Air National Guard ANG Unit of the Year: 144 Fighter Wing, Fresno ANG Airman of the Year: SSgt Carlos Puga, 146 LRS, Channel Islands ANGB ANG NCO of the Year: MSgt Robert R. Amador, 196 RS, March ARB ANG SNCO of the Year: SMSgt John W. Milor, 144 CF, Fresno ANG CGO of the Year: Capt Michael S. Yamamoto, 144 CF, Fresno ANG FGO’s of the Year: Lt Col Esther C. Sablan, 129 AMS, Moffett Federal Field, Maj Todd C. Linton, 163 FW, March ARB and Maj Todd C. Linton, 163 FW, March ARB California State Military Reserve CSMR NCO of the Year: SrA Ashli L. Morgan, 146 AWSU, Channel Islands ANGB CSMR Officer of the Year: 2Lt (CA) Patrick Leonard, 146 AWSU, Channel Islands ANGB...