How to Protect Yourself and Your Estate


Do you know how to protect yourself and your estate?  What are the signs that someone may be taking advantage of you or a loved one?  What can you do to prevent it?  Do you need a Will or a Trust?  What are Advanced Directives?  Should you have a Financial Power of Attorney?  If so, should it be a joint account or Power of Attorney?  So many questions.  So little time.  So many risks if you don’t get the answers you need.  The good news is that a qualified Estate Planning attorney can help you sort through it all.  There are steps you can take to protect yourself and your estate.  I plan to address safety in legal planning with a group of seniors who want to stay in the know.  I thought you might find signs of “foul play” interesting.  There are common caregiver cons that you can note and steer clear of.


Red flags can be strangers who befriend the elderly when children live out of state, priceless heirlooms and expensive electronics go missing, a wallet or bank account that bleeds cash, receipts that don’t add up (items aren’t familiar or are replaced with surprising frequency), unusual gifts or transfers occur (house, accounts, vehicles).  It’s important to be proactive!  If your loved one lives out of state, stay in close communication with them.  Avoid giving cash to a caregiver.  Instead, use a preloaded debit gift card with a limited balance to limit liability in case of fraud.  Take advantage of online banking to monitor card transactions on a daily bases and require receipts for all purchases.  If there are items on the receipts that your loved one would not need or use on a day in-day out basis, or seem to be extravagant or inconsistent with their normal lifestyle, discuss it with the caregiver.  Don’t let things slide.  It’s also wise to research common scams to avoid falling prey.


If at any point, there appears to be foul play, you can contact Adult Protective Services, the District Attorney’s Office, or FAST (Financial Abuse Specialist Team) in Santa Clara County for Assistance with criminal activity.  The District Attorney’s Office will prosecute, if necessary. To protect yourself and your estate, seek guidance and direction from a trusted advisor.  A good one will be an estate planner who is competent, committed, caring, and cost effective.  Parrish Law is here to help you create your “Legacy of Love” – safely and securely.  Call (408) 741-3500 today for your free consultation.


You can read more about how to protect yourself and your estate in the full article.


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