You Are at the Estate Planning and Probate Home Page for Noel C. Ice (See Bio)
There are, in this website, perhaps as many as 150 articles, memos, and other "resources" authored by me, most of them previously published somewhere. Most can be "googled," with varying effort. By putting them all in one place, I hope to make them easier to locate. It is my sincere hope that you find some of them useful. All of the resources are found on the Resources page in one place, sorted by date. The sidebar links are designed to drill down and take you to resources on particular subjects. The subjects frequently overlap. See the "What I Do" Page.
I intend this site to serve as a resource tool and not as legal advice. If the site inspires you to seek out an experienced estate or probate lawyer, call me at (817) 877-2885. I usually answer my own phone. I do give free "curbstone" advice to other lawyers from time-to-time, as a favor, something meant to fall way short of establishing an attorney-client relationship. If I don't charge you, I am not your lawyer. However, if you are a layperson seeking free information, please respect the fact that charging for my time is how I make a living. You may call my legal assistant, Tamara Robbins at (817) 878-2944 to schedule an office or telephone appointment.
2012 marks the first redesign and update of this site in almost six years. Most of the old articles, sample memos, and other resources previously found on the old site can still be found here, though I have eliminated those that were written prior to 1990. More than fifty new resources have been added, including a long and comprehensive article on IRAs and qualified plans that invest in closely held businesses, a subject I have been writing on since before 1990. A version of this is scheduled to appear in the ACTEC Law Journal in 2012. ACTEC stands for the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, a professional organization consisting of a relatively select group of estate planning attorneys and in which I am very active, having previously served as State Chair and Regent of the College.
Rule 7.04(b) disclosures. (1) Noel C. Ice is solely responsible for the content of this webpage. (2) Noel C. Ice was Board Certified in Estate Planning and Probate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in 1983, and has been continuously certified ever since. Noel C. Ice is not certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in any other area. RESULTS OBTAINED DEPEND ON THE FACTS OF EACH CASE. EVERY CASE IS DIFFERENT. SIMILAR RESULTS MAY NOT BE OBTAINED IN YOUR CASE. PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS. Most of the materials on this site have previously been published in one form or another for various professional seminars for lawyers or accountants and sponsored by law schools, state bars or other professional organizations. Others were published in one form or another in tax periodicals or professional journals. In each case I kept, and retain, the copyright, no matter the date.
Remember, "Estate Planning is not just about taxes; it is primarily about family." This motto may surprise you, given the number of words on this website that speak to nothing but taxes. Admittedly, taxes play an important role in estate planning. Taxes are the reason for much of the complexity in the field. I have spent years learning how to minimize estate taxes, but during that time I have learned that there is much more to life. If there were no estate tax, the need for trusts would be diminished not at all. All of the materials in this cite, unless clearly indicated otherwise, are authored by me and are copyrighted by me.
The materials are not meant to and may not be relied upon, but are published for discussion purposes only.
The whole mishpocha of resources can be accessed by clicking the View Resources button below. Clicking it will take you to a page containing links to all of the resources I am making freely available at no charge, where they can be viewed on screen, or downloaded as .pdf files that may be read and searched later. The sidebar links, on the other hand, drill down to pages citing only resources related to the indicated subjects, which resources are found on the Resources page, but are organized by topic in the pages listed in the sidebars, which should be a more helpful way to research the particular interest that brought you here, and will certainly be less overwhelming than viewing all 150+ resources at once.
The Resources page is complete. The pages listed in the Sidebars may not yet have every article related to the particular heading yet. They will soon.
A primary use of a trust is to make it more likely that your intended beneficiaries will be able to enjoy their inheritance instead of others for whom you have less affection, such as creditors or ex-spouses, in-laws and ex-in-laws.
As you move throughout this site, click the home icon in the upper left hand corner, above the left sidebar, to return to this page. As you view articles, you may want to return to the page where you found the article originally, by hitting your browser's back button. However, the longer articles have linked tables of contents and footnotes, and if you use them to navigate inside or outside the article, you might find it more convenient to get back to the page you used to get to the article originally. To make this easier for you, I have added a "back" arrow, between the sidebars, at the bottom left hand side of every page in which a particular article is being viewed.