Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 30 of 31

Full-Text Articles in Law

How The Ali's Restatement Third Of Property Is Influencing The Law Of Trusts And Estates, Lawrence W. Waggoner May 2015

How The Ali's Restatement Third Of Property Is Influencing The Law Of Trusts And Estates, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

Restatements, once limited to restating existing law, are now substantially devoted to law reform. The ALI's website states its law-reform policy thus: "The American Law Institute is the leading independent organization in the United States producing scholarly work to clarify, modernize, and otherwise improve the law." In 2014, the Brooklyn Law Review published a symposium issue on Restatements of the Law. A paper in that symposium argued against the ALI's law-reform policy. The authors specifically speculated that the reformist rather than restatist character of the recently completed Restatement (Third) of Property: Wills and Other Donative Transfers (Property Restatement ...


Deliberative Accountability Rules In Inheritance Law: Promoting Accountable Estate Planning, Shelly Kreiczer-Levy Jun 2012

Deliberative Accountability Rules In Inheritance Law: Promoting Accountable Estate Planning, Shelly Kreiczer-Levy

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

In the last few decades, the emerging trend in trust and estate law has been a steady loosening of the limitations on testamentary freedom. The 1990 Uniform Probate Code pioneered some of these developments. Construction rules are no exception. It is widely accepted that testamentary construction rules should track the owner's presumed intent. In this Article, I argue that there is also room, alongside these intent-furthering rules, for intent-defeating rules in inheritance law. A property owner lacks incentives to internalize the relational, familial, or economic effects of her allocation. Such rules, termed deliberative accountability rules, are therefore designed to ...


Toward Economic Analysis Of The Uniform Probate Code, Daniel B. Kelly Jun 2012

Toward Economic Analysis Of The Uniform Probate Code, Daniel B. Kelly

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Insights from economics and the economic analysis of law may be useful in analyzing succession law, including intestacy and wills as well as nonprobate transfers such as trusts. After surveying prior works that have examined succession from a functional perspective, I explore the possibility of utilizing tools like (i) transaction costs, (ii) the ex ante/ex post distinction, and (iii) rules versus standards, to illuminate the design of the Uniform Probate Code. Specifically, I investigate how these tools, which legal scholars have employed widely in other contexts, may be relevant in understanding events like the nonprobate revolution and issues like ...


Non-Judicial Estate Settlement, John H. Martin Jun 2012

Non-Judicial Estate Settlement, John H. Martin

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Estate settlement through probate procedures satisfies no one. The public is hostile to the delay, expense, and lack of privacy that accompanies probate. Attorneys respond to public dissatisfaction by counseling probate avoidance. Legislatures facilitate some settlements by enacting simplified procedures for low-value estates. In large measure, the Uniform Probate Code (UPC) was a response to criticisms leveled at probate. Alternative settlement procedures are offered by the UPC, including informal testacy determinations and informal appointment procedures. These alternatives, however, remain imbedded in a judicial system, with it procedural rigidities. The UPC informal settlement alternatives did not silence the criticism. The continued ...


Upc Substituted Judgment/Best Interest Standard For Guardian Decisions: A Proposal For Reform, The, Lawrence A. Forlik, Linda S. Whitton Jun 2012

Upc Substituted Judgment/Best Interest Standard For Guardian Decisions: A Proposal For Reform, The, Lawrence A. Forlik, Linda S. Whitton

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The introduction in 1997 of "substituted judgment" as a guiding principle for guardian decisions was a key contribution of the UPC to guardianship reform. The current UPC Section 5-314(a) instructs guardians to "consider the expressed desires and personal values of the ward" when making decisions and to "at all times ... act in the ward's best interest." This dual mandate for guardian decisions was intended to promote the self-determination interests of incapacitated adults. This Article argues that in practice the standard has failed to achieve this goal. It analyzes the shortcomings of UPC Section 5-314(a) and other statutory ...


Probate Definition Of Family: A Proposal For Guided Discretion In Intestacy, The, Susan N. Gary Jun 2012

Probate Definition Of Family: A Proposal For Guided Discretion In Intestacy, The, Susan N. Gary

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Intestacy statutes may not match the wishes of many people who die intestate. Changes to the Uniform Probate Code (UPC) include or exclude potential takers, as the drafters attempt to bring the UPC provisions closer to the intent of more intestate decedents. As the UPC tries to fine-tune the intestacy statutes, however, family circumstances continue to get more and more complicated. Families headed by unmarried couples, blended families with children from multiple marriages, and families in which adults raise children who are not legally theirs, have become commonplace. For some decedents, non-family friends and caregivers may be more important than ...


Children Of Assisted Reproduction, Kristine S. Knaplund Jun 2012

Children Of Assisted Reproduction, Kristine S. Knaplund

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

More than three decades after the birth of the first child conceived through in vitro fertilization, few states have comprehensive statutes to establish the parentage of children born using assisted reproduction techniques (ART). While thousands of such children are born each year courts struggle to apply outdated laws. For example, does a statute terminating paternity for a man who donates sperm to a married woman apply if the woman is unmarried? In 2008, the Uniform Probate Code (UPC) added two much-needed sections on the complicated parentage and inheritance issues that arise in the field of assisted reproduction. Yet it is ...


Family Caregiving And The Law Of Succession: A Proposal, Thomas P. Gallanis, Josephine Gittler Jun 2012

Family Caregiving And The Law Of Succession: A Proposal, Thomas P. Gallanis, Josephine Gittler

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

As the American population ages, the need for long-term care, already great, will become even greater. Some of this care is paid for by government programs, such as Medicaid, and by individual long-term care insurance policies. But the combination of the public fisc and private insurance are, and will continue to be, insufficient to pay for all of the care our seniors and adults with disabilities need. The provision of care in a family residence by one or more family members is an important component of our health care delivery system and must be supported and encouraged by public policy ...


Fiduciary Duties And Exculpatory Clauses: Clash Of The Titans Or Cozy Bedfellows, Louise Lark Hill Jun 2012

Fiduciary Duties And Exculpatory Clauses: Clash Of The Titans Or Cozy Bedfellows, Louise Lark Hill

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Centuries ago, when land represented the majority of wealth, the trust was used primarily for holding and transferring real property. As the dominant form of wealth moved away from family land, the trust evolved into a device for managing financial assets. With this transformation came the use of exculpatory clauses by both amateur and professional trustees, providing an avenue for these fiduciaries to escape liability for designated acts. With the use of exculpatory provisions, discussion abounded about whether fiduciary duties were mandatory or subject to modification. The latter view eventually prevailed, with the majority of jurisdictions viewing fiduciary duties as ...


Toward Equality: Nonmarital Children And The Uniform Probate Code, Paula A. Monopoli Jun 2012

Toward Equality: Nonmarital Children And The Uniform Probate Code, Paula A. Monopoli

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article traces the evolution of the Uniform Probate Code's (UPC) broad equality framework for inheritance by nonmarital children in the context of the wider movement for legal equality for such children in society. It concludes that the UPC is to be lauded for its efforts to provide equal treatment to all nonmarital children. The UPC's commitment to such equality serves an expressive function for state legislatures and courts to follow its lead. The UPC has fulfilled its promise that all children regardless of marital status shall be equal for purposes of inheritance from or through parents, with ...


The Upc Addresses The Class-Gift And Intestacy Rights Of Children Of Assisted Reproduction Technologies, Lawrence W. Waggoner, Sheldon F. Kurtz Jan 2009

The Upc Addresses The Class-Gift And Intestacy Rights Of Children Of Assisted Reproduction Technologies, Lawrence W. Waggoner, Sheldon F. Kurtz

Articles

Editor's Synopsis: Recent years' advances in assisted reproduction technology have enabled the conception of children in ways in addition to the traditional way. The Uniform Probate Code was amended last year to address the status of children born from assisted reproductive technologies for intestacy and class-gift purposes. This article discusses the relevant UPC provisions and offers several hypothetical cases to show how they operate. The article concludes expressing the hope that states will consider the new UPC approach.


The Upc Authorizes Notarized Wills, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 2008

The Upc Authorizes Notarized Wills, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

This article reports on a 2008 amendment to the Uniform Probate Code that permits notarization as a method of will execution.


The Uniform Probate Code's Elective Share: Time For A Reassessment, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 2003

The Uniform Probate Code's Elective Share: Time For A Reassessment, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

In this Article, Professor Waggoner proposes reforms to the Uniform Probate Code's (UPC) treatment of the elective share of the surviving spouse. First, the Article recommends that the UPC adopt a form of presentation that more transparently reflects the normative theories and empirical assumptions underlying the UPC's elective share framework. Second, the Article presents demographic data suggesting that the UPC's current elective share approximation schedule may be inappropriatef or a sizable faction of married couples, those remarryingf ollowing widowhood. Finally, the Article proposes two substantive revisions to the UPC's election share framework-the first proposal is to ...


The Uniform Probate Code Extends Antilapse-Type Protection To Poorly Drafted Trusts, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1996

The Uniform Probate Code Extends Antilapse-Type Protection To Poorly Drafted Trusts, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

The Uniform Law Commission' promulgated a revised version of Article II of the Uniform Probate Code (UPC or Code) in 1990, and approved a set of technical amendments in 1993. As Director of Research and Chief Reporter for the Joint Editorial Board for the Uniform Probate Code (Board)2 and reporter for the UPC Article II drafting committee, I was privileged to serve as the principal drafter of these provisions. UPC Article II deals with the substantive rules governing donative transfers - intestacy; spouse's elective share; execution, revocation, and revival of wills; rules of construction for wills and other donative ...


The Uniform Probate Code Upends The Law Of Remainders, Jesse Dukeminier Oct 1995

The Uniform Probate Code Upends The Law Of Remainders, Jesse Dukeminier

Michigan Law Review

Nothing is more settled in the law of remainders than that an indefeasibly vested remainder is transmissible to the remainderman's heirs or devisees upon the remainderman's death. Thus, where a grantor conveys property "to A for life, then to B and her heirs," B's remainder passes to B's heirs or devisees if B dies during the life of A. Inheritability of vested remainders was recognized in the time of Edward I, and devisability was recognized with the Statute of Wills in 1540.


The Revised Uniform Probate Code, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1994

The Revised Uniform Probate Code, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

In 1989 and 1990, Articles II and VI of the Uniform Probate Code (UPC) were revised by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL). Article II covers the basic law of intestacy, wills, spousal rights, rules of construction, and perpetuities. Article VI deals with multiple-party accounts and transfer-on-death (TOD) security registration. The major innovations in the revised UPC are driven by changes in legal theory. Three grand themes are at work in the new UPC: 1. improving spousal rights and sensitizing them to changes in family structure, 2. curing intent-defeating formalism, and 3. unifying the law of ...


Tribute To William F. Fratcher: Marital Property Rights In Transition, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1994

Tribute To William F. Fratcher: Marital Property Rights In Transition, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

"Marital property rights," a term that covers a vast multitude of rights or interests conferred by law on persons who occupy the status of spouse, are in a state of transition. To discuss the themes and trends that are emerging, this Article is divided into four discrete, yet related segments. The first segment addresses how the law allocates original ownership between spouses in a marriage. The second segment turns to the intestate share of the surviving spouse. This is not a topic that much concerns high-powered estate planners because intestate estates are usually fairly small. But to the surviving spouse ...


The Upc's New Survivorship And Antilapse Provisions, Edward C. Halbach Jr., Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1992

The Upc's New Survivorship And Antilapse Provisions, Edward C. Halbach Jr., Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

Law governing transfers of family property has long struggled with questions of survivorship in their many and varied forms. Important results can and regularly do turn on how such issues are resolved.


Spousal Rights In Our Multiple-Marriage Society: The Revised Uniform Probate Code, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1992

Spousal Rights In Our Multiple-Marriage Society: The Revised Uniform Probate Code, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

The transformation of the American family constitutes one of the great phenomenons of the past two decades. The traditional Leave It to Beaver family no longer prevails in American society. To be sure, families consisting of the wage-earning husband, the homemaking and child-rearing wife, and their two joint children still exist. But divorce rates are astonishingly high and remarriage abounds. In fact, there is an increasing prevalence in the population of marriages that are more likely to end in divorce than others-marriages in which one or both partners were divorced before and marriages of couples who cohabited prior to marriage.


Reforming The Law Of Gratuitous Transfers: The New Uniform Probate Code, John H. Langbein, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1992

Reforming The Law Of Gratuitous Transfers: The New Uniform Probate Code, John H. Langbein, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

In the mid-1980s the Uniform Law Commission undertook a landmark revision of the American law of gratuitous transfers. These reforms culminated in a drastically revised Uniform Probate Code ("UPC"). The revisions inspired the Albany Law Review to organize this symposium issue for the purpose of examining the 1990 UPC. In this introductory paper, we point to the main themes of the reform movement, discuss some of the traits and constraints of the uniform law process, and comment on some of the suggestions and insights that appear in the symposium articles.


Marital Property Rights In Transition, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1992

Marital Property Rights In Transition, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

The subject of "marital property rights" is very timely because those rights are in a state of transition. The term "marital property rights" covers a vast multitude of rights or interests conferred by law on persons who occupy the status of spouse. This lecture is divided into four discrete, yet related segments. The first segment addresses how the law allocates original ownership between spouses in a marriage. The second segment turns to the intestate share of the surviving spouse. This is not a topic that high-powered estate planners get involved in very much because intestate estates are usually fairly small ...


The Multiple-Marriage Society And Spousal Rights Under The Revised Uniform Probate Code, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1991

The Multiple-Marriage Society And Spousal Rights Under The Revised Uniform Probate Code, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

Nearly everyone knows about the transformation of the American family that has taken place over the last couple of decades. The changes, from the latter half of the 1970s into the present, comprise one of the great events of our age. Articles on one aspect or another of the phenomenon frequent the popular press, and a special edition of Newsweek was recently devoted to the topic.' The traditional "Leave It To Beaver" family no longer prevails in American society. To be sure, families consisting of a wage-earning husband, a homemaking and child-rearing wife, and their two joint children still exist ...


Spousal Probate Rights In A Multiple-Marriage Society, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1990

Spousal Probate Rights In A Multiple-Marriage Society, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Other Publications

Nearly everyone knows about the transformation of the American family that has taken place over the last couple of decades. The changes comprise one of the great events of our age-from the latter half of the 1970's into the present. Articles on one aspect or another of the phenomenon frequent the popular press, and a special edition of Newsweek was recently devoted to the topic. The traditional "Leave It To Beaver" family no longer prevails in American marriage behavior. To be sure, the wage-earning husband, the homemaking and child-rearing wife, and their two joint children-this type of family still ...


Redesigning The Spouse's Forced Share, John H. Langbein, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1987

Redesigning The Spouse's Forced Share, John H. Langbein, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

American forced-share law underwent a major round of reform in the 1960s. The main objective was to prevent the decedent from engaging in "fraud on the widow's share," that is, using nominal inter vivos transfers to evade the surviving spouse's forced-share entitlement. In jurisdictions that follow the Uniform Probate Code of 1969 (UPC), that mischief has been eradicated. The UPC, which is discussed in some detail below, extends the forced-share entitlement to property that has been the subject of inter vivos transfer. In the present article we develop the view that the time has come for a further ...


The Emergence Of A General Reformation Doctrine For Wills, Lawrence W. Waggoner, John H. Langbein Jan 1983

The Emergence Of A General Reformation Doctrine For Wills, Lawrence W. Waggoner, John H. Langbein

Articles

In this article, which both summarizes and updates an extensively footnoted article published last year ("Reformation of Wills on the Ground of Mistake: Change of Direction in American Law?" 130 University of Pennsylvania Law Rmiew 521 (1982)), we report on this new case law and discuss the analytic framework that we think it suggests and requires.


Reformation Of Wills On The Ground Of Mistake: Change Of Direction In American Law?, John H. Langbein, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jan 1982

Reformation Of Wills On The Ground Of Mistake: Change Of Direction In American Law?, John H. Langbein, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

Although it has been "axiomatic" that our courts do not entertain suits to reform wills on the ground of mistake, appellate courts in California, New Jersey, and New York have decided cases within the last five years that may presage the abandonment of the ancient "no-reformation" rule. The new cases do not purport to make this fundamental doctrinal change, although the California Court of Appeal in Estate of Taff and the New Jersey Supreme Court in Engle v. Siegel did expressly disclaim a related rule, sometimes called the "plain meaning" rule. That rule, which hereafter we will call the "no-extrinsic-evidence ...


The Impact Of The Uniform Probate Code On Court Structure, Ralph P. Dupont Jan 1973

The Impact Of The Uniform Probate Code On Court Structure, Ralph P. Dupont

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

After considering the present pattern of probate court structure in the United States, this article considers the need for probate court reform as reflected in the deficiencies of the present system. It further indicates that a realistic choice of court structure by legislatures will ultimately be made from among three options: (1) to enlarge the jurisdiction of the present probate court of the state more nearly to approximate the form currently obtaining in several states; (2) to appoint a new body of probate judges and thus create an entirely new court; and (3) to enlarge the jurisdiction of the present ...


Uniform Probate Code--Illegitimacy--Inheritance And The Illegitimate: A Model For Probate Reform, Michigan Law Review Nov 1970

Uniform Probate Code--Illegitimacy--Inheritance And The Illegitimate: A Model For Probate Reform, Michigan Law Review

Michigan Law Review

The Uniform Probate Code (Code), which was approved by the American Bar Association in August 1969, deals with the problem of inheritance by illegitimates both with regard to intestate succession-section 2-109-and also with regard to the construction of a bequest to "children" by will-section 2-611. This Note will examine the issue whether the Code, which presents a comprehensive model for probate reform, deals with the problem of inheritance by illegitimates in an appropriate, desirable, and constitutional manner. The Code provisions concerning illegitimacy relate to many other provisions of the Code in which childhood status is relevant; therefore, it will be ...


Intestate Succession Under The Uniform Probate Code, Thomas J. Mulder May 1970

Intestate Succession Under The Uniform Probate Code, Thomas J. Mulder

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The pervasive social policy underlying the Anglo-American law on succession of property at death is freedom of testation. Our law makes meaningful one's right to decide who shall inherit his property by providing a legal instrument, the will, to distribute property to chosen recipients. When a man dies without having exercised this right, however, the laws of intestate succession determine who shall receive his property, and in what shares it shall be received. In effect, the laws of intestate succession are an estate plan written for the decedent by his state legislature. These laws do not function as a ...


Informal Proceedings Under The Uniform Probate Code: Notice And Due Process, Roger A. Manlin, Richard A. Martens Dec 1969

Informal Proceedings Under The Uniform Probate Code: Notice And Due Process, Roger A. Manlin, Richard A. Martens

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The Uniform Probate Code's formal procedures, which require that notice be mailed or be personally delivered to interested parties prior to any formal proceeding, seem to offer little difficulty in terms of due process. However, the Uniform Probate Code's informal procedures, insofar as they encompass no-notice proceedings, have suffered some criticism." It is the purpose of this article to respond to these criticisms, and to demonstrate that the informal procedures of the Code as accepted by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws do in fact offer all interested persons adequate protection of their interests in ...