Incompetency of a Settlor Affects Trustee Duties to Death Beneficiaries.

          A competent settlor(s)’s power to revoke a living trust and return the assets into his or her name(s) is equal to ownership of the trust assets.  So long as the settlor is competent, the trustee owes his primary duty to the settlor and can follow the written instructions of the settlor.  What changes when […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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Gun Trusts

          People with large gun collections or a family tradition of guns may wish to consider a so-called “gun trust”.  Let us examine the various reasons for the gun trust.           First, the most often stated reason for a gun trust is to comply with federal National Fire Arm (“NFA”) and state law requirements regarding […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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When Third Parties Refuse to Honor a Power of Attorney.

            The objectives of agents acting under a power of attorney can be frustrated when banks, brokerages, or title companies refuse to accept the authority granted to the agent under a duly executed power of attorney.  This can happen even though the power of attorney appears to be valid.  Let us first discuss when and […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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Does My Trust Still Work If I Move Out of State?

            People who relocate into or out-of California may confront the issue of whether the living trust that they established in the state of their former residence should be revoked and a new trust established under the laws of their new state of residence.  Let us discuss the issues.             Trusts are contracts.  Like all […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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Witnneses to Wills

          People should know the legal requirements for the proper execution (signing) of wills.  Under California law, the execution of a will must be witnessed by two persons generally competent to act as witnesses.  Wills are not notarized.  An exception exists for handwritten wills — so-called “holographic wills” — which do not require any witnesses.  […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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SSI: In-Kind Support & Maintenance

An individual who receives Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”) receives a maximum of $866 a month in 2013.  This amount is supposed to be enough to provide for all the food and shelter necessities of life. It includes rent, electricity, heat, and food.  Not surprisingly, given the cost of living, many SSI recipients still rely on […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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Considerations for Parents of Children with Developmental Disabilities.

            Parents with a child who has developmental disabilities face different challenges during the life of their disabled child.  These can be grouped into four different stages based on age.  Let us consider what is important at each stage.             Stage 1, from birth till age 3, involves the “Individual Family Services Plan” (“IFSP”).  The […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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New exclusion from Reassessment for Co-Owners.

          California has enacted a new statutory exclusion from change in ownership for local tax assessments that protects certain cotenants (co-owners) from reassessment at the death of a cotenant.  Real property that has been held for a long time is often taxed at a lower value than it would be if its value were reassessed […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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California Takes A Step Closer to New Medi-Cal Regulations.

            The Department of Health Care Service (“DHS”) has released for public comment draft regulations regarding the implementation of federal Deficit Reduction Act’s (DRA’s) reforms to Medi-Cal for long term skilled nursing care (not Community Based Medi-Cal).  This brings California closer to DRA implementation which will occur once the final regulations are implemented; which some […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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Transferring Inheritance Rights

In special circumstances a beneficiary may want to transfer inheritance rights to another.  Let us examine when, why and how such transfers can take place. Consider an heir to a deceased person’s intestate estate (i.e., a person who died without a will).  Sometimes, an heir may want to transfer his/her inheritance rights to the following […]

posted on: January 26, 2015

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