Contingency plans

I’m a big fan of contingency plans.  Most of the work that I do with my clients is to help them set up contingency plans as well. When someone signs a durable power of attorney allowing a family member to sign checks on their behalf that’s a contingency plan. If my client is hospitalized and unable to pay their bills for time the family member can take over and perform that role. If the parent of a young child is in a car accident and someone else needs to pick the child up from school, the emergency guardianship proxy that the parents signed will allow that contingency plan to kick in.

I have had to use a lot of my contingency plans lately.  After moving my office I was upgrading the software on my computer when the hard drive died. Since I have hourly backups being made of the entire hard drive this was just a mild inconvenience instead of a practice-stopping crisis. I was able to carry on working on a different machine until my computer technician came in a few days later to replace the hard drive.

A few weeks ago I herniated a disc my neck. When the herniated disc presses on the nerve it feels like somebody poured gasoline down your arm and lit you on fire. Add to that a right hand that decides fine motor skills are optional, and that attempts to write or type with it will exacerbate the condition. While my doctor assures me that herniated discs will usually heal themselves, it does take some getting used to.  Since majority of what I produce is through typing this caused a momentary pause well I figured out a contingency plan.  I soon discovered that the upgraded software on my computer had a voice to text function, and that I could use this with some ease to produce the work that needs to be done.  That is how I wrote this post and it has not taken any longer then the posts I used to type.

The hope is always that contingency plans will not be needed, but it is nice to know that they can relieve some of the burden during trying times.

The office has moved!

I moved my office last week, just down the street – literally! You can now find your South Shore estate planning attorney at 190 Old Derby St., Suite 211 Hingham, MA 02043. I hope to see you soon!

Where is your will?

In the “old days” lawyers used to keep their clients’ Last Wills in their offices. Lawyers tended to stay in their practices for decades, and people didn’t move as often as they do now. It also made it so that the client’s heirs had to go back to that attorney when the client passed away,Continue Reading

The Top 5 Mistakes Clients Like Mine Make

There are many mistakes people can make when planning for their future. Usually the biggest one is not planning. Most of the time, by the time they get to me, we can make sure to remedy these mistakes. 1. Not talking to their families. Leaving a house to multiple children and hoping they will “workContinue Reading

What I’ve Been Up To

When I tell people what I do in my law practice, it is usually something like “I help people with wills and dealing with the process of transferring property after someone passes away.” Despite all the instruction to have an elevator speech, I do not have a snappy one liner that sums up all IContinue Reading

Action Item: Share Some Information This Week

What is a quick action you can take this week to make your and your family’s life easier in the event of an emergency? Share some information! This can be as little as telling someone who your attorney, accountant and financial advisor are so they can contact them if they need to help you. OrContinue Reading

Book Review: “Moving Out A Family Guide to Residential Planning…”

Moving Out – A Family Guide to Residential Planning for Adults with Disabilities is a wonderful resource for families exploring living options for their loved ones. Written by Dafna Krouk-Gordon, the founder and president of TILL, Inc., and special needs attorney Barbara Jackins, the book is a wealth of information in an easily understandable format.Continue Reading

Food, Feelings and End of Life Wishes

The New York Times has a recent article about Food and the Dying Patient. It talks about a patient with dementia who could no longer swallow. When they tried to feed her she aspirated the food into her lungs which was causing pneumonia. The doctors turned to the family to decide whether they wanted aContinue Reading

Do You Need To Update Your Living Will?

A living will, also called an advance health care directive, is a place to lay out your wishes for medical care and treatment at the end of your life. The hope is that your appointed agents will make sure these wishes are carried out. You can specify things such as whether or not you wantContinue Reading

Limitations to Guardianships & Conservatorships

As part of the changes to the guardianship and conservatorship process in Massachusetts a few years ago, the courts have been moving away from full guardianship and conservatorship and towards limited ones. The idea is to protect the person in need, while still allowing them to retain rights as appropriate.  On the forms that areContinue Reading