"A house divided against itself cannot stand." We read this in Scripture - the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke. We see this in history. It's Abraham Lincoln's warning made on the eve of the Civil War. It's an everyday life truth.
I'll apply it to Bay Area trust beneficiary house disputes. The scene is familiar. Elderly parents.
Two or more siblings. Long-held estate plans usually favoring equality. One parent passes away, leaving a survivor. The survivor becomes fragile, dependent, beset by dementia, and very vulnerable.
It can be a sibling, a caregiver or maybe a friend. It is somebody - somebody willing to take advantage of an infirm elder. And the major asset targets of wrongdoers - houses.
Bay Area house ownership varies.
- 36% of San Francisco housing is owner occupied.
- 55% for Alameda County.
- Nearly 70% for Contra Costa County.
- And, almost 60% for Santa Clara County.
The median house prices for these counties are high.
- $1.45 million for San Francisco.
- $820,000 for Alameda.
- $600,000 for Contra Costa.
- And, $1.1 million for Santa Clara.
Elder financial abuse is rampant. And, at its worst it involves taking the family home. The taking may be by an outright transfer during an owner's lifetime. Or, it may be a taking by way of unduly influenced changes in an elder's estate plan, trust or will.
The effect is the same. Women are nearly twice as likely to be victims of elder financial abuse as men. Most victims are between the ages of 80 and 89, live alone, and require some level of help with either health care or home maintenance.
We at Hackard Law litigate estate, trust and elder financial abuse cases. We represent clients in house related beneficiary disputes in nearly every major Bay Area County, including San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa and Sonoma.
We're happy to speak with disinherited beneficiaries or heirs whose stolen inheritance includes the family home. Hackard Law represents clients who have substantial cases where we think that we can make a significant difference and there is a wrongdoer who can be made financially accountable for their wrongdoing.
If you would like to speak with us about your case, call us at 916 313-3030.We'll be happy to speak with you.