New to Florida? Homebuyers should update their estate plan

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Oct. 2, 2018 – There are good tax reasons to move to Florida: State residents don't have to pay state income tax, they enjoy property tax caps through the state's Save Our Homes Amendment, and Florida also doesn't have a death tax.

However, it's essential for new Florida residents to update their Revocable Trust documents because of the state's descent and devise laws surrounding Florida homesteads.

Under that law, if a homeowner is survived by a spouse, absent any nuptial agreement waiving certain rights, it becomes necessary to devise the home outright in fee simple to the spouse. Otherwise, the will or trust contains what is known as an "invalid devise," in which event the spouse receives a "life estate" interest in the home, and the children of the deceased receive a present "remainder" interest.

Also, if the homeowner wants to sell the home, the children must agree and sign any listing agreements, contracts to sell or deeds.

Further, the children are entitled to part of the proceeds of the sale of the home.

Source: Fort Myers News-Press (09/28/18) Hersch, Craig R.

October 12, 2018

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