Alzheimer's disease accounts for 60% to 80% of dementia.
Battles between beneficiaries are part and parcel of a busy estate and trust litigation practice. Common battle recipe ingredients include a dose of dementia, simmering family differences, frozen relationships, and diced communications mixed with a wedge of sibling rivalry.
Elder financial abuse is a scourge that truly affects everyone - the rich and the poor, famous people and ordinary people, brilliant Nobel Prize winners and retired people who've never had any formal education.
It's an all-too-common refrain: after a loved one dies, family squabbles erupt over money. Those disagreements can fracture a family and rip them apart.
This is a busy year for estate and trust mediation - the alternative dispute process in which the parties to a lawsuit meet with a neutral third-party, often a retired judge, in an effort to settle the case. Our litigation practice includes California's largest urban areas and so, not coincidentally, does our presence at mediations. While mediations can be dramatically different there are some constants - including strong emotions.
Just down the street from Scott's Pharmacy and the Sevier Memorial United Methodist Church, and near a big dusty farm in Ferriday, Louisiana, you'll find a newly-christened street called Jerry Lee Lewis Avenue, named after the town's favorite son. Although Lewis is best known for a string of rock and roll hits including "Great Balls of Fire", in 2017, he became famous for something else: he's a victim of alleged elder financial abuse.
"You really need to move. This house is dangerous. It's too big. You don't need all this room - all this expense. What happens if Dad dies or is disabled? We only say this because we love you - we want what's best for you. We want you to move closer to us."
Financial elder abuse occurs when someone-often in a close family or trusting caregiving relationship-uses influence to control, manipulate, or misappropriate an older individual's finances.
Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. said, "The life of the law has not been logic; it has been experience... The law embodies the story of a nation's development through many centuries, and it cannot be dealt with as if it contained only the axioms and corollaries of a book of mathematics." I first discovered Holmes' writings in law school and I still like to go back to them to find perspective.
Elderly adults can be especially vulnerable to abuse and exploitation. That's why the California superior courts issue restraining orders - to help safeguard seniors from abuse. California residents 65 years and older can request a restraining order for the following reasons:
Have you ever heard the phrase "Bloom where you are planted." Its meaning can range from your place in life is full of magnificent possibilities to you can still make lemonade out of lemons.