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General Litigation

Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure

The Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure were adopted in 1946. They govern the practice and procedure in all criminal proceedings in the federal court system. The goal of the rules is to assure the just determination of all criminal proceedings. The rules specify that they are to be interpreted to afford simplicity in procedure and fairness in administration. The rules are intended to prevent unnecessary delay and expense. More…

Overview of Administrative Law

Administrative law is the body of law that is created by the rules, regulations, and decisions of federal, state, and municipal administrative agencies. More…

Judicial Conflicts of Interest

Our legal system requires a fair and independent judiciary. In order to maintain public trust in our system of justice, judges must conduct themselves in an ethical manner. There are codes of conduct, which set standards of behavior for state and federal judges. These standards are aimed at assuring the impartiality of judges and reducing the possibility of conflicts of interest. More…

The Supreme Court of the United States

The United States Constitution provides that the judicial power of the United States is vested in one Supreme Court and any lower courts established by the United States Congress. The Supreme Court was organized on February 2, 1790. More…

Indian Tribal Courts

Congress has plenary or complete authority over Indian affairs. This means that Congress has unlimited discretion to regulate affairs on an Indian reservation. Under federal law, Indian nations are quasi-sovereign; that is, they have power in some areas but not in others. For example, Indian nations can operate tribal governments and manage their own property and resources. However, they cannot conduct foreign relations or prosecute non-Indians who commit crimes on reservations. Indian nations have adopted tribal codes, which usually combine traditional law with state law and federal law. More…

Blog Probate

Experienced Georgia Estates Attorney Guides You Through Probate

The process of probate typically accompanies a painful emotional loss. The knowledgeable, meticulous probate attorneys at Magruder & Sumner ease the stress of probating your loved one’s estate and guide executors and beneficiaries through the complex process.

The process of probate

Most executors have never or only rarely probated a will and know little about the process. Magruder & Sumner can guide you through the complex probate process, including:

  • Filing the will with the appropriate Georgia county probate court
  • Developing the best strategy for fairly and expeditiously probating the estate
  • Finding and collecting assets
  • Closing and opening bank accounts
  • Transferring assets from the deceased to the estate
  • Paying estate taxes
  • Valuing, managing, preserving and liquidating the estate
  • Locating beneficiaries
  • Hiring experts, when appropriate
  • Valuing and managing the estate

    Magruder & Sumner assists executors with the arduous tasks of collecting, managing, valuing, protecting and liquidating assets of an estate. Magruder & Sumner has a team of experts available to assist in every aspect of estate probate. When appropriate, the firm calls upon accountants, financial advisors, real estate agents, property managers and other professionals to assist with executor duties. We can access expert opinions about unique assets such as antiques, rare books, automobiles and other collectables for accurate valuation, management and possible sale.

    Probate disputes

    Even for seemingly straightforward estates, disputes between beneficiaries sometimes arise. Magruder & Sumner’s professional courtroom presence can calm the emotionally charged process of probating a challenged will or disputed executor or judicial decision. When it is in the best interest of our clients to preserve cordial family relationships, Magruder & Sumner is adept at mediating disputes. That said, the they assertively defend the client’s beneficiary rights within the Georgia probate court when doing so is necessary.

    Bankruptcy Blog

    Bankruptcy Attorney Assisting Creditors

    While bankruptcy laws are quite compassionate towards individuals who’ve fallen on hard times, they can be harsh on creditors who are forced to absorb a loss that helps finance the debtor’s fresh start. However, if you’ve received a notice of bankruptcy from someone who owes you money, don’t assume that you have no rights. Magruder & Sumner has been helping creditors assert their rights toward debtors in bankruptcy for more than 18 years. The firm’s attorneys know the bankruptcy code inside and out and can advise you on the steps to take to improve your chances of being repaid. They are available to assist you in cases related to:

    • Chapter 7 bankruptcy
    • Chapter 11 bankruptcy
    • Chapter 13 bankruptcy

    What an “automatic stay” means to a creditor

    An automatic stay is an injunction by the bankruptcy court that immediately prohibits creditors from seeking repayment of debts from the debtor. It doesn’t mean you’re out of luck, but it does mean any efforts to recover what you are owed must be directed towards the court. Magruder & Sumner assists creditors in reviewing a debtor’s bankruptcy petition to see precisely where opportunities exist for the creditor to advance his claim. They are aggressive in meeting the court deadlines, which come quickly and require detailed responses. They take the stress off our clients’ shoulders.

    Secured versus unsecured debt

    A loan that is secured by collateral gives the creditor a lien against a debtor’s asset. This is a huge advantage in bankruptcy court, where secured creditors go to the head of the line. Often the issue is cut and dried, but where there is ambiguity about whether a debt is secured, a skilled attorney can make the difference to a creditor’s chances of recovery.

    The honesty requirement

    The U.S. Supreme Court has stated that the Bankruptcy Code “gives to the honest but unfortunate debtor…a new opportunity in life….” If the debtor took on the debt in bad faith or through some kind of dishonest manipulation, he can’t discharge that debt. Likewise, if you believe there is misrepresentation or fraud in the debtor’s bankruptcy petition, such as attempting to hide assets, you must bring those objections to the court. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can present a clear and convincing argument to help your cause.

    Bankruptcy proceedings move quickly — contact an attorney today.

    Especially today, when bankruptcy filings are so numerous, the court is eager to decide cases fast. If you delay asserting your rights, you can easily lose them.