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Scott C. Stockwell

Scott C. Stockwell

Ad Astra Legal LC Law Office
  • Estate Planning, Probate, Elder Law...
  • Kansas
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Scott C. Stockwell has a general practice of law with a focus in estate planning, probate, business law serving the Lawrence, Kansas and Douglas County, Kansas area as well as the surrounding counties of Jefferson, Leavenworth, Wyandotte, Johnson, Franklin, Osage, and Shawnee. Scott is a 1984 J.D. graduate of the University of Kansas School of Law in Lawrence, Kansas, a 2015 M.B.A. graduate of the W. P. Carey School of Business in Tempe, Arizona and a 1981 B.A. graduate of Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas.

Practice Areas
  • Estate Planning
  • Probate
  • Elder Law
  • Real Estate Law
  • Business Law
Additional Practice Areas
  • General Civil
  • Probate Law
  • Wills and Trusts
  • Free Consultation
    A free consultation for estate planning and probate clients.
  • Credit Cards Accepted
    Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
  • English: Spoken, Written
  • German: Spoken
Professional Experience
Scott C. Stockwell, Attorney at Law
- Current
Private Legal Practice in Lawrence, Kansas
Director, Utilities Division
Kansas Corporation Commission
Assistant to Commissioner Keith R. Henley
Kansas Corporation Commission
Arizona State University
MBA (2015) | Information Management, Marketing, and International Business
International Study in France and Spain
University of Kansas School of Law
J.D. | Law
Activities: Law Clerk Johnson County District Court; Traffic Court Attorney; Chief Judge of the Traffic Court
Kansas State University
B.A. | Political Science, Pre-Law
Professional Associations
Douglas County Estate Planning Council
- Current
Websites & Blogs
Legal Answers
72 Questions Answered

Q. Is a TOD on property still good if one of my siblings passed before our mother or do we go by her Will?
A: Your mother prepared and filed a transfer on death (TOD) deed after your father passed in 1990. In or about 2009, your sibling (implied to be a beneficiary of TOD deed), passed away. After your sibling's passing, your mother wrote an updated "will" that was notarized. A transfer on death deed operates independently of a will and may not be revoked by provsions of a will. K.S.A. 59-3503 (c). "If a grantee beneficary dies prior to death of the record owner and an alterative grantee beneficiary has not been designated in the deed, the transfer shall lapse." K.S.A. 59-3504 (c). If your mother was not aware that the transfer on death deed could not be revoked by the will amendment, the outcome may not reflect her intentions. The heirs at law and beneficiaries of the alleged whose interests might be affected may enter into a valid settlement agreement that distributes the estate differently than is provided by the will. K.S.A. 59-102 (8). Assets in the estate could be redistributed to make the distribution, in conjunction with the transfer on death deed, provide for a distribution that better reflects your mother's intent. You should consult with an attorney to sort out the options.
Q. Can a wife recoup funeral costs from her husband’s probated estate?
A: In Kansas, payment of final expenses of the decedent would be expenses the estate would be obligated to pay. A proper claim would need to be made within the time allowed. The spouse also has rights to request a share of the estate under different statutes, including spousal allowance, homestead, and spousal share. The spouse should consult with an attorney immediately. There are time limits that would apply.
Q. I was warded Guardianship/Conservatory for my 89 year old grandmother who recently passed away on May 3rd 2019.
A: A small estates affidavit is for certain items of tangible and intangible personal property. A house and the land it occupies would be real property. The appointment of an administrator (no will) or executor (will) is necessary to effectuate a transfer of a decedent's real property. If there is no will, it is also possible to wait six months from the date of death and complete a determination of descent (one petition, one order) to complete a transfer of the real property at that time. If an estate is not opened promptly, it is imporant to assure that the house insurance remains in place.
Q. If I did work on someone who is renovating houses then selling them can I file a lawsuit if they don't want to pay me?
A: If work is done as a subcontractor on residential real estate, there is a process provided for by statute to file a mechanic's lien on the property. For improvements to existing residential property, the statute is K.S.A. 60-1103A (for new residential property K.S.A. 60-1103B). The filing of a mechanic's lien for a subcontractor for improvement to residential real estate requires the provision and filing of a warning statement.
Q. Does new ownership of an asst living facility have to honor prepaid rent?
A: Assisted living facilities are regulated in the state of Kansas. . One of the first steps you should take is to reach out to state regulators and make a formal complaint. In a typcial transaction where a facility is transferred, a part of the transaction closing would be a true-up of prepaids and deposits. The purchaser of the facility was in the best position to ensure that an accurate true-up was completed. In the true-up, credits and debits would be permitted for oustanding obligations or benefits that were not otherwise accounted for in third party transactions with residents or third party vendors. You should consult with an attorney immediatly to ensure the options for enforcing the rights of the patient are preserved.
Q. Can a business block my way into my garage?
A: Your statement seems to indicate the following: You have a garage that opens into an alleyway. A business built a bulding that extends into the alleyway that blocks access to your access. Your access has previously included access through a vacant city lot for 30 years. It is a little unclear as to whether the vacant city lot is where the business built the building (after purchasing the lot from the city.) The first question that comes to mind is whether the alley is a dedicated alley. That information might appear on a county orthophoto map or be indicated on a plat filed at the Register of Deeds on which a dedicated alleyway would be indicated. If the building encroaches upon a public right of way, the city might assist in correcting the mistake. Use of the lot or some portion of it exclusively by you for fifteen years or more might have given rise to a claim of adverse possession. You should consult with an attorney immediately.
Q. Can a single member LLC have a board of directors? if so does the state have to be notified?
A: A limited liability company (LLC) in Kansas may have a structure as determined by the operating agreement. LLC's were created simplify governance as compared to regular corporations. The organizers/members of an LLC have broad discretion to define the control strucure. A single member LLC could establish an operating agremeent that provides for a board of directors. The operating agreement itself does not have to be provided to the state. The annual report must be filed by an authorized person. That person is typically a "member" or a "managing member". When the operating agreement is drafted, the person with authority and the title to make a filing should be identified.
Q. My grandmother passed away two months ago. She had a will but we cannot find a copy, nor can we track down the attorney
A: You should work with an attorney where your mother was living at the time the will was prepared. An attorney might have better luck knowing which attorneys to contact and have a chance to visit with those attorneys. There is a duty to make reasonable inquiry to locate the will, and your attorney could help you determine what those reasonable steps are so that the court may be informed. If the terms of the will are known, it is possible to seek probate of a lost will. Typically, a lost will situation is when there is a copy of the document available. While there is a presumption that a lost will was revoked, it may be overcome by affirmative evidence. If there is no will and the terms are unknown specifically, but the family has some agreement, it is possible for all the heirs and potential legatees and deviseees to enter into a settlement agreement. Barring an agreement, the heirs at law are entitled to the net proceeds of the estate.
Q. I father past away in Tennessee but I live in Kansas. I am being told I need to open a estate account
A: The state with primary authority over a peron's estate would typically be the state in which the person was a resident at the time of death. If your father was a resdient of Tennessee, you should consult with a Tennessee attorney. Some estates allow for smaller estates composed of certain assets to be handled outside of a probate proceeding; whether such a method is available in Tennessee, you should seek advice from Tennessee counsel. If an asset is physically located in another state, it may be necessary to conduct an ancillary probate proceeding in the other state. You refer to an "account" which may be in the nature of an intangible asset. An intangible asset like a bank or brokerage account is typically treated as under the authority of the state of residence (however, there may be exceptions). If your father was a Kansas resident, such a nonprobate solution may be available.
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1201 Wakarusa DR
Suite E-222
Lawrence, KS 66049
Telephone: (785) 842-1359
Cell: (785) 423-1990