• 5 Smart Estate-Planning Steps to Avoid Probate

    Updated: 12 min ago

    By James E. Salter Learn more about Richard at NerdWallet’s Ask an Advisor Planning ahead for what will happen to your property when you are no longer around can help save a significant amount of time and money for your heirs. Smart estate planning can also ensure a speedy transfer of your assets according to your wishes. Probate When you pass away, your possessions and property go through a process that includes the settlement and distribution of your assets in compliance with the terms of your will. This is the probate litigation process and it is managed by your state’s probate court. If you have personal properties and real estate investments located outside the state where you live, separate ancillary pr

  • Russia proposes March 1 ceasefire in Syria; US wants it now

    Updated: 15 min ago

    MUNICH (AP) — Russia has proposed a March 1 ceasefire in Syria, U.S. officials said Wednesday, but Washington believes Moscow is giving itself and the Syrian government three weeks to try to crush moderate rebel groups. The United States has countered with demands for the fighting to stop immediately, the officials said. Peace talks are supposed to resume by Feb. 25. The talk of new ceasefire plans comes as the U.S., Russia and more than a dozen other countries meet in Munich to try to halt five years of civil war in the Arab country. The conflict has killed more than a quarter-million people, created Europe's biggest refugee crisis since World War II and allowed the Islamic State to carve out its own territory across parts

  • Panel denies parole to Sirhan, assassin of Robert F. Kennedy

    Updated: 24 min ago

    SAN DIEGO (AP) — Sirhan Sirhan was denied parole Wednesday for fatally shooting Robert F. Kennedy after a confidante of the slain senator who was shot in the head forgave him and repeatedly apologized for not doing more to win his release. Paul Schrade's voice cracked with emotion during an hour of testimony on his efforts to untangle mysteries about the events of June 5, 1968. The 91-year-old former labor leader said he believed Sirhan shot him but that a second unidentified shooter felled Kennedy. "I should have been here long ago and that's why I feel guilty for not being here to help you and to help me," Schrade said. The men faced each other for the first time since Schrade testified at Sirhan's 1969 trial.

  • McCarty leads No. 6 Texas past No. 20 Oklahoma State 70-55

    Updated: 29 min ago

    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Brooke McCarty scored 18 points, Ariel Atkins added 16 and No. 6 Texas beat No. 20 Oklahoma State 70-55 on Wednesday night to sweep the two-game season series against the Cowgirls for the first time since 2006. Center Imani Boyette had nine rebounds and five blocks for Texas (22-1, 11-1 Big 12). After she left the game with 5:45 remaining with four fouls, her backup, Kelsey Lang, made consecutive baskets to give the Longhorns a 12-point lead. Brittney Martin led Oklahoma State (18-5, 8-4) with 21 points. Kaylee Jensen had 15 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks. Texas beat Oklahoma State by 30 points on Jan. 9 in Stillwater. The Cowgirls shot 28 percent and committed 22 turnovers in that game.

  • Prosecutor: Ex-LA sheriff to plead guilty in corruption case

    Updated: 30 min ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Former Los Angeles Sheriff Lee Baca pleaded guilty Wednesday to lying to federal authorities investigating corruption in the department, a probe that was gaining momentum when he abruptly retired two years ago. Baca, a media-savvy lawman who used his platform as head of the nation's largest sheriff's department to travel the world touting progressive policing policies, had largely been out of sight since leaving office a year early in January 2014. He consistently dodged questions about any connection to the corruption even as other former underlings pleaded guilty or were convicted.

  • Low snow causes havoc again with Iditarod

    Updated: 32 min ago

    WASILLA, Alaska (AP) — Another low snow year in Alaska is playing havoc with the world's most famous sled dog race, at least for the start. The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race always begins with a ceremonial, fan-friendly slow jaunt through the streets and trails of Anchorage, held a day before the start of the competitive portion of the nearly-thousand mile race. A lack of snow last year north of Anchorage forced the race from the normal start in Willow, about 75 miles north of Anchorage, further north to Fairbanks. The conditions in Willow are much improved this year, but the problem is in Anchorage, where the snowfall in the city for the last two years has equaled only about two-thirds of a normal year.

  • Tulsa SMU Basketball

    Updated: 32 min ago

    SMU guard Nic Moore (11) drives against Tulsa guard Shaquille Harrison (3) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016, in Dallas.

  • Senate passes bill to hit North Korea with harsher sanctions

    Updated: 33 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Seeking to derail North Korea's drive for nuclear weapons, Republican and Democratic senators set aside their partisan differences Wednesday to unanimously pass legislation aimed at starving Pyongyang of the money it needs to build an atomic arsenal. The Senate approved the sanctions bill 96-0 after lawmakers repeatedly denounced Pyongyang for flouting international law by pursuing nuclear weapons. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., said for too long North Korea has been dismissed as a strange country run by irrational leaders. "It's time to take North Korea seriously," Menendez said. The Senate bill, authored by Menendez and Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo.

  • Hayes, Brown lead Wisconsin to 72-61 win over Nebraska

    Updated: 33 min ago

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Nigel Hayes scored 20 points and Vitto Brown added a career-high 18 as Wisconsin defeated Nebraska 72-61 Wednesday night for its sixth consecutive victory. Brown hit the first of three consecutive 3-pointers for the Badgers (15-9, 7-4 Big Ten) as they took the lead for good with a 13-2 spurt midway through the first half. The junior forward made 6 of 7 field goals, including 3 of 3 from 3-point range, and grabbed five rebounds. Wisconsin shot 11-for-18 from 3-point range, its best effort of the season. Brown, Bronson Koenig and Zak Showalter combined to shoot 8-for-9 on 3-pointers. Freshman Glynn Watson Jr. scored 16 points to lead the Cornhuskers (13-12, 5-7), who were without second-leading scor

  • Pollard's 34 points lead Houston over Memphis 98-90

    Updated: 34 min ago

    HOUSTON (AP) — Devonta Pollard had 23 of his career-high 34 points in the second half Wednesday night and Houston made eight of its last nine from the field to beat Memphis 98-90. Pollard hit a jumper that tied it at 77 early in a 19-5 run with 5:34 left. Damyean Dotson's pair of free throws 26 seconds later gave the Cougars the lead for good on their way to a 91-82 edge with one minute remaining. Pollard made 14 of 24 from the field and the Cougars (17-7, 7-5 American Athletic Conference) shot 55.9 percent. Dotson added 21 points, Galen Robinson Jr. scored 18 and LeRon Barnes 12. The Tigers (14-10, 5-6) led by 13 in the first half and stayed ahead until Houston's late run. Shaq Goodwin had 24 points and Dedric

  • Washington Utah Basketball

    Updated: 35 min ago

    Washington forward Marquese Chriss (0) pulls down a rebound as Utah's Kyle Kuzma (35) and Chris Reyes, center, defend in the first half during an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016, in Salt Lake City.

  • Grizzlies rout Nets in 1st game since Gasol's broken foot

    Updated: 36 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Mike Conley scored 20 points, Jeff Green had 12 of his 18 in the third quarter, and the Memphis Grizzlies beat the Brooklyn Nets 109-90 on Wednesday night in their first game since losing Marc Gasol to a broken right foot. The Grizzlies unleashed a strong perimeter attack in the absence of their franchise center, making seven 3-pointers in a 39-point third quarter that blew open the game. Zach Randolph finished with 15 points for the Grizzlies, who were coming off consecutive losses, both in overtime. Gasol was hurt in the first quarter against Portland on Monday and Memphis learned the extent of his injury Tuesday. The Nets' Joe Johnson was scoreless, ending the NBA's longest active streak with at lea

  • Leonard lifts Spurs to 98-96 win over the Magic

    Updated: 37 min ago

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Kawhi Leonard scored 29 points and drilled a jumper from the tip of the key with 0.9 on the clock to lift San Antonio to a 98-96 win over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday night. LaMarcus Aldridge had 21 points and Patty Mills added 17 points and seven assists for the Spurs, who won their fourth straight game. Evan Fournier, whose 3-pointer tied the game with 13.3 seconds left, led Orlando with 28 points. Nikola Vucevic had 20 points and 13 rebounds, Victor Oladipo scored 14 and Elfrid Payton had 13 points and seven assists. Payton missed an open layup at the buzzer that could have tied it. The Spurs rallied from a 14-point fourth quarter deficit to take the lead 94-93 on a fadeaway jumper by A

  • Texas A M Alabama Basketball

    Updated: 38 min ago

    Alabama guard Retin Obasohan (32) drives against Texas A&M guard Jalen Jones (12) and Texas A&M center Tyler Davis (34) during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Alabama won 63-62.

  • St. Bonaventure beats Fordham 76-72 in OT

    Updated: 38 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Marcus Posley hit a pair of free throws for the lead and Idris Taqqee sank a late jumper to seal the win as St. Bonaventure beat Fordham 76-72 in overtime on Wednesday night. The Bonnies (16-6, 8-3 Atlantic 10 Conference) trailed by a point with 1:22 left in the overtime period when Posley sank two free throws to give St. Bonaventure a 73-72 edge. Taqqee made it 75-72 on a jumper with 18 seconds remaining. Dion Wright led the team with 21 points, Posley finished with 17 points and Jaylen Adams and Denzel Gregg had 11 apiece. St. Bonaventure trailed 66-62 with 3:09 left in regulation. Adams and Wright combined for four free throws in the stretch to tie it up, 66-all, and force the overtime. Ryan R

  • Dion Phaneuf loses in Senators debut 3-1 against Red Wings

    Updated: 39 min ago

    DETROIT (AP) — Danny DeKeyser and Henrik Zetterberg scored early in the first and third periods to help the Detroit Red Wings beat the Ottawa Senators and spoil Dion Phaneuf's debut with his new team with a 3-1 win Wednesday night. Petr Mrazek stopped 22 shots and his bid for a second straight shutout ended with 2:24 left when Zach Smith scored. Darren Helm restored Detroit's two-goal lead with an empty-net goal about a minute later. Phaneuf got off to a rough start. He skated backward, swiveled his hips and fell to the ice early on one of his first shifts as the veteran defenseman failed to keep up with Gustav Nyquist. Craig Anderson backed up his new teammate by stopping Nyquist on the sequence for one of his

  • FBI says it has surrounded last occupiers at Oregon refuge

    Updated: 39 min ago

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The FBI said Wednesday it has moved to contain the last few occupiers of an Oregon wildlife refuge who were part of a protest that began more than a month ago over federal land policy. In a statement, authorities said they placed agents at barricades both immediately ahead of and behind the area where the occupiers were camping. An acquaintance of occupier David Fry was livestreaming on YouTube what he said was an open phone line from the standoff. The occupiers said they were surrounded by armored vehicles. They can be heard arguing with someone they said was a negotiator. The four holdouts were the last remnants of an armed group that seized the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in eastern Oregon on J

  • Georgia Kentucky Basketball

    Updated: 41 min ago

    Kentucky's Jamal Murray warms up prior to an NCAA college basketball game against Georgia Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016, in Lexington, Ky. Kentucky won 82-48.

  • Baylor TCU Basketball

    Updated: 41 min ago

    TCU guard Veja Hamilton (3) battles Baylor guard Alexis Prince (12) for space during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016, in Fort Worth, Texas.

  • Republicans block Kansas House debate on Medicaid expansion

    Updated: 41 min ago

    TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republicans blocked a debate Wednesday in the Kansas House on a proposed expansion of the state's Medicaid program before giving first-round approval to budget-balancing legislation. The bill advancing on a voice vote eliminates a projected deficit of nearly $200 million in the budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1. House members expect to take a final vote Thursday, when the Senate plans to consider its own plan. During a five-hour debate, the GOP-dominated House voted 85-37 against debating a proposal from Democratic Rep. Jim Ward of Wichita to expand for three years the health program for the poor, a move encouraged by President Barack Obama's health care law.