In my practice over the years, I have learned what to watch for to protect aging relatives.
Estate planning is so important because it legalizes all of the most important decisions you can make regarding your family and property once you are gone as well as how you want to be cared for in an emergency.
Here are the estate planning documents you probably need.
Estate planning has become my favorite part of my practice. You may be thinking, Ugh, I don’t want to think about my death. Push pause on that one. Hit the snooze button.
Well, no. Don’t. The time to get this done is actually now.
Guest post by Pamela D. Wilson, advocate for family and professional caregivers.
We love our cars. Some of us love the type of car we own and the way it looks: sporty, shiny or compact. For others it’s the way our cars make us feel when we’re driving: a convertible with the wind blowing through our hair. Others love the ability to jump in the car and go for a drive: the freedom and mobility a car provides.
As you look ahead to the New Year, you might set new goals or make resolutions dealing with your health, wealth and happiness. But the start of the year is also a great time to get organized with estate planning. Sure, it’s great to save some money or make your first big investment with a new home. But you work hard to make that possible! So make sure you have a say in what happens to it if something happens to you. As K.P. Edwards wrote in “Financial Counseling and Planning,” “Estate planning has long been recognized as an important part of financial planning for families.”
Contrary to popular belief, you are never too young, too healthy or too single to have a will, and you don’t need to have kids to justify drafting one either. Continue reading “Why You Should Arrange Estate Planning in 2018”
The following is a guest post by Marie Villeza of ElderImpact.org. Her mission is to empower seniors against ageism by providing information they need to keep control of their own lives. Marie developed ElderImpact.org to provide seniors and their caregivers with resources and advice.
The famous Henry Ford once said, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” When the world and its technologies move so fast, we struggle to keep up — sometimes we resist it — but our life can be easier if we embrace the changes of time’s innovations and learn to use them. The modern world has certainly made long-distance communication more convenient, and if you are care for an elderly parent from far away, you may have some help. Continue reading “How Technology Can Help With Long-Distance Caregiving”
There is a common observance among lawyers: In family law, the parents fight over the children; in elder law, the children fight over the parents.
Sadly, this is often true and can lead to costly litigation. What starts out as a dispute among siblings as to whether a parent should reside with one of them can end up being a court case. When that happens, our firm is there to represent a party who wants to make sure his or her interests are protected. Continue reading “Probation Litigation: Guardians, Conservators and Estate Issues”
The following is a guest post by Fran Myers who started a nonprofit called Advance Care Advocate to meet the needs of those without a health care advocate. She coaches families, acts as an agent (primary or secondary) and speaks for groups, organizations and churches.
A teen I know shared that when her dad died suddenly, no one knew how to talk with her about it. Her friends didn’t know what to say. Her story highlights the fact that we really don’t do well at communicating about this phase of the life cycle no matter how old we are and how hurtful that is. Continue reading “Why It’s Important To Talk End-Of-Life Before An Emergency”
If you die without a will, your property goes where the state tells it to go. Being will-less is called being “intestate.” Each state has its own intestacy statutes that determine what happens to your estate when you have no will.
However, not all property is covered by these statutes (or included in a will if you have one). This property will transfer to whoever you name as beneficiary or to a surviving co-owner. This includes proceeds from a life insurance policy, property you have already transferred to a trust, retirement account funds, such as 401(k)s or IRAs, property owned in joint tenancy with someone else, real estate held by beneficiary deed or by transfer-on-death, payable-on-death bank accounts, and securities held in a transfer-on-death account. Continue reading “Where Does My Property Go If I Die Without a Will?”
A financial or medical power of attorney is a legal document where one person (the “principal”) grants another person (the “agent”) the “power of attorney” to act on the principal’s behalf in certain cases. For example, a principal could grant an agent the power to act on their behalf, e.g.: withdraw money, sell property, etc. It’s important to have someone you trust as your agent under power of attorney, because this power generally starts immediately and not just once you are incapacitated.
If you have been granted the power of attorney, you may have to sign documents on the principal’s behalf. Colorado law does not specify how this signature must appear, but various organizations have listed the minimum requirements of signing while using your granted power of attorney: Continue reading “How to Sign a Document Using ‘Power of Attorney’”