• How to Classify an Independent Contractor vs. an Employee

    How to classify an independent contractor vs. an employee is an increasingly important issue for businesses. Up to a third of the American workforce may be self-employed full- or part-time. A major question for these individuals and the companies for which they provide work is how many of them are, under the law, employees? Why Classification of Workers Matters With every employee comes costs, taxes, local, state, and federal rules, regulations, and statutes. You may be tempted to apply an “independent contractor” label to avoid all this expense and hassle. But that could subject you to far greater liability if the person, according to the law, is an employee. Because of a successful complaint to a government agency or the filing of a lawsuit,

  • Do All Assets Have to Pass Through Probate?

    If you’re thinking about writing a will, you may wonder, do all assets have to pass through probate? Many assets do not. You could structure your estate planning so that all your assets avoid probate, which may or may not be the best option in your situation. Knowing which property is part of the probate process is critical to handling the estate properly. Dickson Frohlich can help you create the best estate plan for you and your family. We also help clients in all probate matters. A critical issue for probate is which assets can be transferred after someone passes away without going through the process. Probate law covers what happens to a deceased person’s property after death. Probate is the legal process to settle the estate when there are

  • What Is Simplified Probate?

    If your loved one left behind a smaller estate, you may ask yourself, what is simplified probate? It’s the legal process for settling the affairs of a person who has passed away. Some estates qualify for simplified rules within the probate system. If you want to learn where an estate stands and which kind of probate applies, contact Dickson Frohlich for help. The superior court oversees the probate process. The process determines whether a will is genuine and appoints a personal representative to take charge of the estate. During the probate process, creditors may be allowed to collect debts the deceased owed when he or she died. Washington Probate Basics Not all property or assets need to pass through probate. A good rule of thumb to know

  • What an Executor (Personal Representative) Cannot Do

    An executor/executrix (personal representative) are essentially the managers of an estate. That means they have a fiduciary duty to the decedent as well as her heirs to carry out their work to the best of their ability, and to do so in an organized and transparent fashion. They act, in essence, on behalf of the deceased person to fulfill his or her wishes as described within his or her estate plan. Consequently, a personal representative cannot be careless, inattentive, or use the estate for personal gain. An executor controls all the estate’s assets, which means he is responsible for paying its bills (creditors) and preserving the asserts of the estate such that the proceeds are maximized for the heirs. Personal representatives who are incompetent