Prince Died Without a Will, leaving a Mess!

Recent Superstar Death Brings Estate Planning to the Forefront of Discussion

The untimely death of superstar Prince has brought a surprising issue to American living rooms: estate planning. If current reports are correct that Prince died without a will, state law and the Court system will dictate who controls and inherits his sizeable estate. It is also likely that taxing entities will take a bigger bite out of his estate – costing his family millions, unnecessarily —  before anyone inherits anything.  All of this could have been avoided and there’s an important lesson here for you and your family.

Prince died on Thursday, April 21, at the age of 57, in Carver County, Minnesota. He had one half-sister, Tyka Nelson. He also had six half-siblings. Prince was predeceased by both of his parents and two of his half-siblings. He was divorced twice and had no living children.

Ms. Nelson recently filed documents with the Carver County probate court, asserting that she believed that her brother died without a will. She also asked that the court appoint a special administrator to handle Prince’s affairs until a personal administrator was appointed. A judge appointed a banking affiliate to serve in this role temporarily.

When a person passes away without a will, they are said to have died “intestate.” When this happens, state law directs the distribution of the person’s property, known as the “estate” through a process called probate. And, it’s up to the Court to decide who controls the estate.

If Prince indeed died without a will, these statutes will result in his siblings dividing his estate, including his half-siblings. This may or may not be what Prince would have wanted, had he made provisions himself.  And, his estate is likely to be overseen by a paid executor, instead of a family member or friend he would have chosen.

So, what does this mean for you?

Just like Prince, if you do not plan for your death, your family will get stuck in Court and could end up in conflict as well.  It’s an unnecessary expense to your family, causes additional heartache and grief, and is totally avoidable.

Let Prince’s death be an inspiration to you to leave your loved ones with a legacy of love, not a big mess to clean up. We can help.

Nalini S Mahadevan, Esq

P: 314.932.7111

Disclaimer: Please do not rely on this blog for legal advice.  Call me if you want to get advice and sign an engagement letter with my law firm.

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Was I chosen in the H1B lottery?

The only way to know for sure that the application was rejected is when the application is returned with the fee checks, or no receipt is received a week from May 2nd, 2016, when all the applications that were chosen were entered in the database.  Another indication of an application being chosen is of course the fees being debited from the attorney’s bank account.

There is no process for inquiring about rejected applications with USCIS.

So hang tight and wait for your receipt or returned application.

Nalini S Mahadevan, Esq. – – 314.932.7111 –

Of course you know this is not legal advice and you must consult your own attorney!

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Students at at UNNJ lose their visa!

ICE cancels F-1 Student visas

On April 4 and 5, 2016, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) terminated the visa of nonimmigrant students who had enrolled at the University of Northern New Jersey (UNNJ), and the visas of nonimmigrant students who had transferred from UNNJ.


The students were found to have knowingly participated in visa fraud because they enrolled at UNNJ to obtain an illegal to maintain their F-1 nonimmigrant status.

UNNJ is a school operated by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Newark. It was created as a part of an enforcement action that targeted SEVP-certified schools and officials who sought to fraudulently utilize SEVP and the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) to commit various violations of federal law.

There are approximately 60 students who are affected and who will receive notification of cancellation of their visa.

Students who are terminated because they were currently  or  enrolled before at UNNJ and choose not to file for reinstatement or have applied to USCIS for reinstatement and whose application is denied, must depart the country immediately.

Not Eligible for Transfer

These students are not eligible for to transfer to another SEVP-certified school unless U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approves the student for reinstatement following the student’s termination. Students who transferred to another school from UNNJ will also be terminated and their new school will be notified of the cancellation of their visa.

What to do now?

Call SEVP Response Center at 703-603-3400. This number is staffed from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (ET), Monday through Friday, except holidays. The SEVP Response Center is closed every Wednesday from 12:45 to 1:30 p.m. ET for system maintenance and testing.

Provide the following information when calling:

  • First and last name
  • SEVIS ID number
  • Address
  • Telephone number where you can be reached
  • E-mail address
  • Current SEVP-certified school

Nalini Mahadevan JD, MBA

Attorney at Law

314-932-7111 office


Disclaimer:  Not meant as legal advice. NOT meant to create an attorney client relationship.  Please call an attorney to obtain advice pertaining to your legal situation.

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The Best Gift You Can Leave to Your Loved Ones!

2013-06-02 17.21.59 HDR

Heather McManamy, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2013, was told her condition was terminal in 2014.  She began reflecting on what the future lives of her friends and family would be like, after she passed away, and gained national popularity as the dying mother who had written cards for many of her daughter’s future milestones.

She particularly wanted to communicate life lessons and advice to her daughter, Brianna, who was only a toddler. So McManamy decided to write greeting cards for big events in her daughter’s life, to be opened as each occasion took place.

The Wisconsin mom left over 40 different cards for events in her daughter’s life, including formal events such as birthdays and her wedding, as well as informal ones, such as advice for bad days and her first breakup.

McManamy also prepared a note for her husband to post on her Facebook page, which he did after her death in December. Her note showed her love of life and for her friends and family.

McManamy’s announcement of her death, like her greeting card notes to her daughter, left wise advice for its readers:

“From the bottom of my heart, I wish all my friends long, healthy lives and I hope you can experience the same appreciation for the gift of each day that I did. . . . Please do me a favor and take a few minutes each day to acknowledge the fragile adventure that is this crazy life. Don’t ever forget: every day matters.”

McManamy’s memoirs will be published in book form in April 2016, “Cards for Brianna: A Lifetime of Lessons and Love from a Dying Mother to Her Daughter.”

McManamy’s positive attitude and writings also serve as sage advice of something we too often forget. Preparing for and facing death openly and honestly is a gift to our loved ones because it allows us to leave behind what really matters, not just what we’ve accumulated financially, but our wisdom, our love and our leadership.

That’s why we build Family Wealth Legacy Interviews into our estate planning process, so we can ensure you leave behind what really matters. Give us a call today if you’d love to ensure you leave a legacy of love to the ones you care about most.

This article is a service of [name], Personal Family Lawyer®. One of the objectives of our law practice is to keep families out of court and out of conflict. Our lawyers can help you protect those you love using a Family Wealth Planning Session. Call our office today to schedule a time for us to sit down and identify the best strategies for you and your family.

Nalini S Mahadevan JD, MBA   314-932-7111 ( office)  314-374-8784 (mobile)

DISCLAIMER: The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Information contained in this email are not legal advice and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.

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Is Your Driver’s License valid for Flying?

Starting Jan 10, 2016, TSA will no longer accept MO DL as valid photo ID to board a commercial craft at an airport.  There are 8 other states which are in the same boat!  

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Illinois
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • South Carolina
  • Washington state
  • Puerto Rico
  • Guam
  • the U.S. Virgin Islands
In response to TSA’s announcement, the Federal Courts in Missouri announced that a MO DL is still valid ID as far as they are concerned!
Many US born citizens living in MO and other states, may not have alternate Photo ID such as a US Passport, to present. US Passports are expensive for most persons to obtain. Military identification can be presented as valid ID to TSA. Immigrants in general have their passports to present as photo ID to TSA.
Here is what the DHS had to say:
“The Department of Homeland Security is working with state officials to ensure their compliance with REAL ID Act standards and to grant a state an extension where warranted. Missouri has not yet provided adequate justification to receive an extension on compliance with the requirements of the REAL ID Act passed by Congress in 2005. As of October 10, 2015, federal agencies may only accept driver’s licenses and identification cards issued by states that are compliant with the REAL ID Act or have an extension for accessing most federal facilities (including military bases) and entering nuclear power plants. Starting on January 10, 2016, driver’s licenses and identification cards issued by Missouri will not be accepted for these purposes. Missouri residents visiting a federal facility can provide another form of identification or follow procedures that the facility allows for persons without acceptable identification.”
“Missouri can request an extension at any time if there are new developments or additional relevant information regarding the steps they are taking to comply with the REAL ID Act requirements.”
“The Transportation Security Administration continues to accept all state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards, including those from Missouri. DHS is in the process of scheduling plans for REAL ID enforcement at airports and will ensure that the traveling public has ample notice, at least 120 days, before any changes are made that might affect their travel. The REAL ID Act places the responsibility for action on the state to provide state-issued identification that meets the Act’s security standards.”
Nalini S. Mahadevan, Esq  Tel: 314.932.7111 (office) 314.374.8784 (mobile)
7730 Carondelet Ave, Suite 110, Clayton MO 63105
Disclaimer: Information contained here is not meant as legal advice nor does it create a client-attorney relationship.  A choice of a lawyer should not be based on advertising alone.

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Discover the Estate Planning Tool You Never Knew You Needed

You may be familiar with IRAs. You may also be familiar with Trusts, but have you heard of the ‘trusteed IRA’? The Trusteed IRA is an elegant financial planning tool that combines the best of the IRA world with that of the Estate document world. Learn more about the tool that many financial planners and estate planning attorneys are raving about.

No question that millions of Americans are using IRAs to save for their retirement. An estimated 48.9 million U.S. households, or 40.4%, owned IRAs as of 2012. However, current trends show that IRA withdrawals will increase significantly over the next decade, both in dollar amount and as a percentage of total retirement income, as the baby boomer generation enters retirement.

The problem, however, from an inheritance point of view that arises for the IRA creator is that when he or she dies, the beneficiary can withdraw part or all of the IRA funds at that time. That is probably not what the IRA creator intended long term.

What if there was a way, however, to control the ultimate beneficiaries, a way in which one could designate contingent beneficiaries that could not be altered by the primary beneficiary?

Enter the trusteed IRA or ‘individual retirement trust,’ an estate-planning device, which gives people considerable control and flexibility over their IRA funds.

Give us a call or email us to get to know more about this device.

Nalini Mahadevan, Esq


This blog post is not intended as legal advice.


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Texas v. United States Reduces Work Eligibility!

3 Year EADs recalled for DACA recipients

The Court in Texas v. US stopped the ability of the federal government to issue work eligibility cards ( employment authorization document or EAD cards) beyond 2 years as allowed under current regulations for DACA eligible recipients.  About 2000 EADs had been issued with a 3 year expiration.  Any 3 year EAD issued after February 16, 2015 has to be returned to USCIS.  About 1200 EAD cards have been returned.  A second letter has also been issued to recipients of 3 year EAD cards.   The last date to return cards is July 17th, 2015.  The letter states that non return can affect deferred action and employment authorization.

3 Year EADs reduced to 2 years eligibility following Texas Court Order

In addition to other measures that are underway, the three-year DACA grants and EAD cards have been invalidated for all of these individuals and changed to two years; the SAVE database that states use to verify eligibility for driver’s licenses and other state benefits has been updated to reflect the two-year authorizations for all of these individuals; and USCIS has now sent two rounds of individualized letters demanding the return of the three-year EAD cards and warning recipients that a failure to return the card could affect their deferred action and employment authorization.

Applies only to DACA holders

This action applies only to DACA EAD cards issued for 3 years.  The 3 year authorization has been reduced to a 2 year eligibility to work.  The Court’s order applies to all 50 states even though it was issued in Texas.



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US Visas face overseas outage!

DOS alert that the Bureau of Consular Affairs is currently experiencing technical problems with its overseas passport and visa systems. The issue is not specific to any particular country, citizenship document, or visa category.

Visas are not being issued due to a server malfunction on June 9th  in the United States, resulting in delays in issuing visas at Posts overseas and issuance of US Passports at consulates and embassies abroad.  In addition, biometric data was not being processed to allow security checks at consulates to issue visas.

There are about 100 computer experts from all over the US working on the problem with the system.

The Takeaway

Travelers to the US are advised not book trips unless they have a valid visa stamp in their passport.  US citizens are advised to be patient because the system has not be fully restored to enable U.S. consulates and embassies to issue or renew passports.  Any action that requires security clearance or biometrics is likely to be delayed until further notice.  Persons awaiting immigrant visas stamps in their passports are likely to be delayed as well.

By Nalini Mahadevan, JD MBA

Attorney at Law

This blog is meant for informational purposes only.

Visit our page to learn about “ 6 Mistakes Immigrants Make that put them in Financial Peril and how to solve those problems.”

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Pressure Mounts to File Green Cards for H1B Workers

Ever since USCIS announced that as of May 25, 2015, it would allow spouses of H1B workers to file for EAD ( employment authorization) to work in the USA, the pressure has been mounting on employers to file green card applications for their workers on H1B visas.

Denied the right to work

H4 visa holders, spouses of H1B workers have long been denied the right to work.  They have had to choose between working back in their home country or abandoning their careers to follow their ‘better’ half to the USA and to stay home, so that they can have a life together.

Wait times are 10+ years

H4s wait patiently, some at least 12-15 years if their H1B spouse is a Master’s degree holder and others even more if less qualified.  Blame the lack of visas for these talented workers.

Now the wait is over. 

File the application on May 26th, 2015.

Contact us at or at (314) 374 8784.

Nalini S Mahadevan, Esq

The information is strictly for educational purposes only.

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US Companies Lose the Immigration Game!

Employer seeks quality candidate; employer finds their match.  But problem!  Candidate is not a US citizen and hence needs a visa.  There is only a 36% chance that the employer will be able to employ the chosen candidate and there is a 100% chance that the employee will be unable to start until October 1, unless the employer is a nonprofit institution!

This year USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Service) received 233,000 visa applications for 85,000 spots! So there was a 1 in 3 chance that a Bachelor’s degree holder would be able to obtain a slot in the visa Lottery.

US companies open offices overseas because that is where the sales are.  Factories, back offices, retail, affiliates, branches, subsidiaries.  But product is researched, developed and nurtured in the US.  The customers are overseas, but the development is here.  Which is why US companies are demanding more visas for employees.  Companies need more technical talent here, so that they can sell more overseas and enrich the bottom line for US stakeholders.  Legal employees contribute to taxes, consumer spending, real estate, banking, insurance and social security!

US Industry loses

US universities spend roughly $250,000 per student in a PhD program (stipend, tuition, grants and other benefits).  When a US Masters or PhD applicant cannot obtain a visa, he or she either returns to their own country or finds greener pastures in Canada, UK and other European countries and Australia, who are not shy about accepting them.

The ‘cap’ of 65000 for Bachelor degree H1B visas is artificial.  Industry is self-regulating.  If there is no demand for H1B jobs, there will be fewer visas issued.  For example, in 2008 and 2009, the cap was filled in the first week.  But in 2011 and 2012, the cap was reached only in December, and January of the following year.  In 2013, the US economy was in recovery and the cap was reached in the first week.  The average pay of H1B workers is $70,000 (according to USCIS H1B Handbook for 2011, 2012 available at  In general, these are not workers who are short changed or paid lower wages.  Employers also have to factor in cost of ‘onboarding’ these employees in addition to wages and other benefits paid to US workers.

The public are focused on just computer programmers and other IT employees.  But the truth is that there are other professions that also use the H1B program such as occupations in Architecture, Engineering and Surveying, Administrative Specializations, Education, Medicine and Health, Managers, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, Life Sciences, Other Professional, Technical, and Managerial Occupations, Social Sciences, Art, Law and Jurisprudence, Writing, Entertainment and Recreation, Sales, and Museum, Library, and Archival Sciences, which are 40% of the cap based applications.

Companies such as Microsoft have started opening offices over the border in Canada, which has a ‘friendlier’ immigration system which accommodates guest workers easily without fuss.

The solution

Expand the number of visas for US Master degree holders.  This would boost the US University ‘industry’ and reverse brain drain of US trained foreign students leaving with their US gained knowledge to enrich ‘home’ countries, that increases competition for US companies!

Expand and create an H1B visa quota for entrepreneurs, because these start-ups will eventually employ local US workers.  Tie these visas to local incubators who can become sponsors for talent.  This will encourage industry in economically depressed areas, much like the Conrad program does for rural health and EB 5 visas does for ‘Targeted Employment Areas’.  Today the capital threshold required for a startup has dramatically shifted from the millions to a few thousand dollars, which means that it is easier to start a company.  The financial requirements to not become a’ public charge’ and the ‘ability to pay employees’ can be kept the same.

The takeaway

Our economy needs jobs that pay a living wage.  Our population is aging.  The majority of H1B applicants were in the 25 to 39 age range, workers with long employable lives who can pay into our economy.


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