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Horizon Elder Law & Estate Planning Blog

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

A New Baby Means Time for an Estate Plan


Why do I need an estate plan?

If you are like most Americans, you may have put off creating an estate plan.  More than 50 percent of all Americans lack even a basic will.  Anyone who has recently had a baby, however, should reconsider the importance of making an estate plan.  An estate plan outlines your wishes for your assets and care of your dependents in the event of your death.  Having a solid estate plan can save your family from financial difficulties and emotional upheaval.


Read more . . .


Wednesday, December 28, 2016

In wake of conservatorship hearing, some clarity on Woodhouse absence    


Is there a way to avoid a conservatorship?

Mendocino County has been in a bit of chaos after Third District Supervisor Tom Woodhouse was placed in conservatorship in November. Woodhouse has apparently been regularly missing board meetings and was arrested on October 28, 2016 on domestic violence charges. While Woodhouse’s wife was named as conservator, there has reportedly been no communications as to when Woodhouse would return or how they intended to proceed with his board seat.
Read more . . .


Monday, December 26, 2016

When the Caregiver Dies


How can you plan for the future of your special needs child when you die?

Everyone can benefit from having a current estate plan in place to address their wishes and the needs of their family when they die. This is perhaps even truer for parents of children with special needs. Starting Read more . . .


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

More boomers at risk for falls; ER rates increase


What can you do to prevent a costly ER visit?

Aging is a strange process considering our minds generally age slower than our bodies. When our minds are not aware of our bodies’ new limitations, fall injury risks increase. This is precisely what is happening to our baby boomer generation.

Throughout California, the number of Californian’s aged 65 or older visiting the emergency room for a fall has increased 38% between 2010 and 2015. Just last year, the number of seniors who visited the emergency room after a fall was more than 232,000.


Read more . . .


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Effects of Conservatorship on the Right to Vote


With the 2016 Presidential race in the rearview, many are contemplating the various factors that went into play to trigger the dramatic and unexpected result. In the months leading up to Election Day, issues surrounding voter rights – particularly for those convicted of a felony – were at the forefront of political analysis and opinion. One less-publicized issue – which could be very relevant for thousands of Californians – is whether


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Monday, November 28, 2016

Elder Abuse & In-Home Care: What you need to know


In-home nursing care is often a welcome relief for families looking to avoid the costs of full-time long-term care. Oftentimes, elderly folks need a little help during the day, but are not to the point that round-the-clock skilled nursing assistance is needed. For those families electing in-home care for their loved ones, finding the right individual can be the most difficult component of the arrangement – particularly given the rising instances of abuse and neglect by in-home care providers.

In-home nursing care is typically provided on a contract basis, either with the provider herself or a contracting agency. In a recent exposé published in The Jefferson Journal, one Massachusetts family regaled their unthinkable experience with in-home care.


Read more . . .


Saturday, November 26, 2016

Veterans' Benefits for Seniors Expected to Be Reduced in 2017


It looks like budgets are going to be shrinking in 2017, as both Social Security and Veterans benefits are slated to become scarce. Due to a 1983 agreement between President Ronald Reagan and a Democratic-led Congress, Social Security Benefits will be cut, just as the age of retirement is raised to 67.  The cash deficit for Social Security is expected to rise from $74 billion to $361 billion by 2025.

Meanwhile, more seniors may be looking at reduced incomes as Veterans’ benefits become harder to qualify for in 2017. According to the Veterans Aid and Attendance Pension program, in order to qualify under these new standards, veterans and their spouses must have:

  • $80,000 or less in assets
  • been honorably discharged
  • served 90 consecutive days, at least one of which must have been during an approved period of war.

Read more . . .


Saturday, October 29, 2016

‘Your loved ones changed lives,’ families are told at ceremony for fallen firefighters


What do you need to do when a loved one dies?

Hundreds of firefighters, families and friends gathered to honor 29 fallen firefighters at the 14th annual California Firefighters Memorial Ceremony in Sacramento on October 15th.  The ceremony was centered around the California Firefighters Memorial, dedicated in 1995 to honor firefighters who have died in the line of duty since 1850.


Read more . . .


Saturday, October 29, 2016

Top 5 Financial Scams Targeting Californians


 Financial scams can wreak havoc on the financial well-being of the victim – oftentimes creating a lifelong ripple effect, taking years to unravel. The following are some of the most common financial scams targeting Californians – particularly those in the elderly, senior citizen and “Baby Boomer” demographics:

            #5: Free Lunches: As the old saying goes, “there is no such thing as a free lunch.


Read more . . .


Monday, October 17, 2016

Tip Sheet on How to Avoid Probate in California with Revocable Transfer on Death Deed by Deed and Record


How can you avoid probate on your home?

Probate is an expensive, long and drawn-out process. It eats away the time and energy of our loved ones after we die. It eats away at our assets as well, with money being funneled into court fees, attorneys’ fees and trustee fees. Many people


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Monday, October 17, 2016

Napa care facility sued for elder abuse after nurse steals prescriptions


How can we protect our loved ones from elder abuse?

No one expects their loved ones to be abused or neglected when they trust a care facility to look after them. Unfortunately, with the rise in our elderly population and the expanding need for elder care, too many elder care facilities are popping up with insufficient training and staff to cover their needs.

Sadly, this situation recently arose in Napa, where Golden LivingCenter is being sued for


Read more . . .


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