It can be especially difficult to witness a loved one age and develop serious, devastating health disorders that affect his or her mental capacity. Although most people in California understand how important estate plans are, not everyone has the legal protections in place to avoid being taken advantage of. When dementia or other illnesses leave an elderly family member exposed and vulnerable, it is often up to loved ones to establish necessary conservatorships to keep that individual safe.
Thinking about, much less planning, for the inevitable end of life can be extremely uncomfortable for many people. Because of this, crucial aspects of estate planning are often put off or neglected. After all, the future can seem so very far away, so why worry unnecessarily now? In reality, estate planning is not something that should be delayed.
The focus of estate planning is often about what will happen to a person's assets after he or she has passed away. Although this is a reasonable focus for estate planning, some people in California still continue to shirk the process on the basis that they simply do not care what happens to their possessions after they are no longer alive. While this course of thinking might be somewhat understandable, it does not give adequate regard to grieving family members who will be left behind to handle the estate administration process with no input or guidance.
Communication is important for any area in life. It is particularly important when it comes to estate planning in California. Failure to communicate with family members and intended beneficiaries can result in future problems.
Template and generic estate plans are usually not a good idea. It is important for a California resident to have an estate plan customized for one's specific situation. Many people, once they have created an estate plan, will leave it and forget it. However, it is always a good idea to periodically update one's estate planning strategy in order to take into consideration any significant life changes.
Many times planning an estate is not as straightforward as one might think. It is possible for different estate planning documents to seemingly contradict each other when it comes to directions on how to administer an estate's assets. In this case, applicable estate planning laws in California will decide which estate planning instrument holds more weight.
Most Californians with estate plans in place make arrangements concerning the disposition of their money and physical assets after they pass away. However, many of these people forgot to consider their digital assets in their estate planning efforts. This can cause some significant problems when it comes to time to administer the estate.
A conservator may be appointed by California courts if a judge determines that a person is unable to care for themselves or needs help managing their own finances. It is important to understand the differences between the various types of conservatorships so the conservator is clear about his or her duties. The probate court has the option to grant conservatorship over a person's estate, their person or both.
When a person dies in California, his or her estate may be subjected to administration by the probate court. Any assets that were given away prior to the decedent's passing will not be subjected to probate. Property and assets that were included in a living trust also are not administered by the courts.
Michael Jackson’s estate could be liable for paying more than $500,000 in legal fees if a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge rules in favor of concert promoter AEG. The promoting giant was sued by Jackson’s mother for wrongful death stemming from his demise from a fatal dose of propofol by former cardiologist Conrad Murray in preparation for a stint of concerts in London, dubbed the “This Is It” tour.