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Florida Judge experienced at preventing undue influence

Broward Circuit Judge Mel Grossman certainly has some interesting stories to tell after 36 years as a Florida judge. From cases involving well known entertainers to notorious motorcycle gangs, the judge knows how litigation can stir emotions. His proudest achievement, though, is shaping the local probate court, which has become a federally recognized model for its effectiveness.

This blog regularly reports on the pros and cons of probating a will after someone's death. Probate courts in Florida, however, handle more than just the administration of a decedent's assets. They also preside over guardianships and conservatorships, which often arise during a person's later years. Judge Grossman's work in this field has helped numerous Floridians avoid ugly undue influence litigation after a loved one passes away.

When an elderly person begins to lose the ability to care for themselves and administer their assets, kids and other loved ones step in to help. When the person passes away, questions often arise over changes to the will, ownership of assets and the intent of the decedent as heirs argue others exerted unfair control over a feeble mind to get what they wanted.

Local probate courts can help families avoid these issues by being proactive during the life of a loved one. Courts can help establish mechanisms for the care of an elderly person. They can also administer systems to preserve assets. While court action is not necessary in every case, it can be invaluable under circumstances where kids are scattered across the country, a person has no children or disability has threatened the person's financial security.

Local Lee lawyers specialize in helping their clients work through all aspects of estate planning and probate administration. This sometimes includes having a guardian or conservator appointed. If you believe circumstances may warrant such protection, a local lawyer can guide you through the process.

Source: Daily Business Review, "Judicial Profile: Mel Grossman's Proudest of Model Probate Court," Carlos Harrison, Sept. 5, 2014

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