Do Patients Have the Right to Refuse Treatment?

Short answer, yes. Competent adults have the right to refuse medical treatment. But that doesn’t mean that the state can’t get involved. Continue reading

Choosing the Appropriate Elder Abuse Civil Protective Order

GettyImages-940320528 (1)Unfortunately, elder abuse is a much more rampant problem than we’d like to admit. In fact, studies show that approximately 10 percent of Americans aged 60 or over have experienced some form of elder abuse.

For attorneys with older or at-risk clients, it’s important to keep in mind the different protective orders available and to select the most appropriate order to ensure your client’s ongoing safety and welfare.

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How to Set Up Power Over a Client’s Digital Assets

computer that holds digital assets and accountsAn increasingly important issue in estate planning is how to handle a decedent’s digital assets, e.g., email and social media accounts, digital files and photographs stored in the cloud. Here’s what to do.

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How to Allay Fears About Advanced Health Care Directives

Cancer patient comfortable knowing she has a health care directive in placeIn addition to the natural fear of becoming incapacitated, some people hesitate to sign an Advanced Health Care Directive (AHCD) because they worry it will take away their power to make decisions. Here are some facts to allay those fears. Continue reading

Do Adult Children Have a Duty to Support Their Parents?

multi-generational family photoMost people wouldn’t think twice before helping their parents financially. In fact, partially due to baby boomers’ inadequate retirement planning, 20 percent of surveyed millennials provide financial support to their parents. As Buck Wargo explains in his blog post, most millennials give this help gladly. But they may also be legally required to do so. Continue reading

What to Do If Your Client Dies Abroad

Although most attorneys never get involved with probate administration outside the United States, you might encounter practical problems if your client, who’s a California domiciliary, dies abroad. Continue reading

Providing for a Pet After Its Owner Dies: Pet Trusts

Pets play an important part in the lives of many people, and pet owners often want to arrange for the financial support and care of their animals after the owner dies. To make this happen, the best option is usually to include specific provisions in a trust. Continue reading

Can You Control What Happens to Your Remains After You Die?

California has a statutory scheme for the right to control disposition of the remains of a deceased person (Health and Safety Code §§7100–7117), but if you or your client wants to have this control, you need to put it in writing. Continue reading

Settlors and Shareholders: Who Has Standing to Sue for Elder Abuse?

The Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act (EADACPA) (Welf & I C §§15600–15675) provides enhanced remedies for “financial abuse” that results in a loss of property of someone over age 65. This can get complicated because the property interests of elders may not be held in their own name; they often are held in a variety of ownership vehicles for estate planning or business reasons. This raises the question, may the elder sue under EADACPA for injury to those property interests? The answer is, it depends. Continue reading

Revocation-on-Divorce Statute May Have Retroactive Reach

When the marriage is over, former spouses usually want their property to go somewhere else when they die. At least the revocation-on-divorce statute assumes this is so and renders transfers made to the other spouse null and void. The statute became effective in 2001, but it now looks like it may affect transfers made before then. Continue reading