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Dr Kenneth V Zichi J.D.

Dr Kenneth V Zichi J.D.

Kenneth V . Zichi J.D.
  • Elder Law, Estate Planning, Family Law...
  • Michigan
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Summary

Helping Livingston County residents navigate the legal system for 30 years. I focus on Wills, Trusts, Estate Planning and Probate, with a significant portion of my practice also concerning Real Estate and general civil litigation. If you have questions or issues with your home, a cabin up north, or want to insure your family is cared for after you are gone, I'd be happy to meet with you, perhaps bust some myths, and certainly insure YOUR and your family's needs are met. Call for an appointment today!

Practice Areas
  • Elder Law
  • Estate Planning
  • Family Law
  • Insurance Claims
  • Landlord Tenant
  • Real Estate Law
  • Divorce
Fees
  • Free Consultation
    Telephone or office conferences, 20 minutes or less. Longer conferences may incur a minimal fee.
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Contingent Fees
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
Michigan
Languages
  • English: Spoken, Written
Professional Experience
Owner
Kenneth V . Zichi J.D.
- Current
Mayor
City of Williamston (Michigan)
-
Education
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor
J.D.
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University of Michigan - Ann Arbor
A.B. / History / Communications
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Honors: LS&A Honors College 1977-1979
Professional Associations
State Bar of Michigan
Member
- Current
estate and probate section Michigan bar
member
- Current
Law and Media committee - State Bar of Michigan
member
-
Speaking Engagements
Newsroom Seminar, WNEM TV/AM - Saginaw MI
State Bar of Michigan - Law & Media committee
An hour-long seminar addressing some of the common practical and substantive difficulties journalists encounter in covering the legal system in Michigan.
Websites & Blogs
Website
Website
Website
Avvo.com
Legal Answers
278 Questions Answered

Q. My mother passed on 6/28/11. The children paid a lawyer to file probate, but I was told it hasn't been filed.
A: First things first, if you do nothing you are GOING to lose the property, so it does make sense to investigate this before it is too late. More to the point, you have answer some questions (was there a will, who can act as the personal representative and most importantly, was your mom's property is worth more than her debts) to know where to go with things. If there aren't net assets, or they are very small, then it may not make sense to try to probate the estate. You should consult with a local attorney (and if you paid a lawyer to do the job and it wasn't done you should seek advice about getting your money back at the same time you do this!) to determine what needs to be done at this point. -- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice
Q. Q: Both my aunt and only cousin passed away, cousin in 2005, aunt in 2006. I am the only living relative and in wills.
A: If there were a TRUST at the time of passing, the successor Trustee should have managed this -- it would NOT have gone through or been the responsibility of the Estate representatives. This highlights the importance of people keeping their records in order to insure their heirs will know what to be looking for and what to expect! If the accounts were 'drained' by administrative expenses, the Trustee MAY be responsible for that oversight, but you would have to show they SHOULD HAVE KNOWN about these accounts and chose to do nothing. That will be a tricky proof! If someone improperly 'drained' the accounts, whoever did that may be responsible! HOWEVER, the person who has the right to complain is the beneficiary of the trust! You don't say who that is.... I'd strongly urge you to consult with a local estate attorney to review everything to insure what you do next will be both productive and proper. Good luck. --This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice!
Q. Deed to my father's home is in my name (estate in probate) but the pr refuses to add me to his loan or to remove hers
A: There is something wrong in your description. If the house really is already 'in your name' then it should not have been in probate. If it is NOT in your name, then the PR has the right (and obligation!) to distribute it according to the will. The PR cannot do ANYTHING with the loan except pay it off if that is what your father wanted. Only the BANK can modify the terms of the loan. If your father's estate does not have the money to do that, or that is not what your father directed, then she can't do that either. You need to take the will and ALL the other paperwork to a local estate attorney to review so he/she can figure out what is going on and what you should be doing here. Do this ASAP! -- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice
Q. If I have a will leaving everything to my wife and then our son will he automatically inherit all of our real property?
A: Probably yes, but there may well be better ways to accomplish this that will be less expensive to your son. I'd urge you to consult with a local estate planning attorney to review ALL your assets and your desires and determine if 'ladybird deeds' some sort of Family LLC or a trust might not be a better way to go. Each state is different in how things are treated, and you may well need to also consult with an attorney in PA to insure the property there is managed appropriately, but WITHOUT PROFESSIONAL ASSISTANCE you could be stepping into a minefield! Professional legal help will save you many times the cost in headaches and often actual dollar costs too! -- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice
Q. My fathers will tells me to divide his cash between kids. He has no other assets. I'm in Washington.
A: If there are no beneficiaries named on cash accounts and the accounts are in your Father's name alone at the time of his death, you will HAVE to involve the Courts in some way to make the distribution. If there were beneficiaries on ALL the accounts or ALL of them were jointly owned, then maybe not, but there might be tax implications if things are not done properly. The ONLY way to be sure what to do is to consult with a local Estate planning and probate attorney to determine what needs to be done. If the estate is small enough there might be some sort of expedited procedures but again -- consult with a local probate attorney. MANY offer free or low cost initial consultations and they can provide some real guidance at that appointment. Good luck.
Q. My children are already arguing over who gets what when I die - what's the best way to handle this?
A: Spend it all before you die and leave them nothing? That is obviously not a 'serious' answer, but ultimately, it really SHOULD BE the goal of anyone. Estate planning is about first and foremost taking care of yourself and not being a burden on your kids unnecessarily as you age. If you have enough to be sure you won't use it all yourself, then your kids should be GLAD they get anything! In your position, I'd be telling the kids 'who said any of you are getting anything?' Charity X and Y, and the local Charity Z are all in line ahead of you so don't be so greedy. You will get family photos and my ashes so be nice to each other instead of fighting about 'stuff' ' I know that isn't really a 'legal' answer, but YOU need to decide what to do, and then seek out a local estate planning attorney to help implement what YOU want from there! Good luck, and I hope your kids get smarter as they get older. Family shouldn't fight over 'stuff'.
Q. Should I leave my money in a trust for my kids? I can't figure out if this is the way to handle it
A: There is no 'one size fits all' estate plan. Trusts CAN be valuable, they can also increase the cost of management and distribution such that it becomes not worth it. They can help control a 'spendthrift' or they can hamper kids from being able to take advantage of good situations, Seek the counsel of a local estate planning attorney -- someone who is licensed and NOT some 'trust lunch seminar' guy who is only out to sell expensive estate plans. Discuss your desires and your family situation, and solicit advice. If the planner wants to sell you documents without talking to you about your goals first, they are not a 'real' planner, and you should keep looking.
Q. My sister died with nothing but debts - do we need to actually go through probate?
A: I agree, but unless the creditors are hounding YOU you should realize you don't even need to bother notifying them -- IF indeed there are no assets to probate. If you have questions, you should seek counsel with a local probate attorney. Most of us offer free or low cost consultations and you can get most if not all of your questions answered for a very low (or no) fee. Don't be afraid to make a few calls and set up an appointment with a local attorney!
Q. After dad died the ex shows up with a will leaving her everything. He made it clear he destroyed it, but here it is
A: Was the will done before or after their divorce? WERE they actually divorced? Too many unknowns to provide much real guidance here, but you SHOULD seek a local attorney to review the paperwork and discuss the situation with you. Bring both the divorce judgement and the purported will and any other documentation concerning assets with you. And a copy of everything filed with the Probate Court Don't delay -- every minute you dither means you will lose out. You may ALREADY be too late if the court has ruled against you but you need local legal help NOW. -- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice
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211 E Grand River Ave
Howell, MI 48843
USA
Telephone: (810) 299-5222
Cell: (517) 258-8020