It Happened In Our Office

Happened in Our Office… We Know What Grandma Wanted

2019-07-16T11:57:57-04:00July 16th, 2019|It Happened In Our Office|

The three grandsons came into the office and were confident. “Don’t worry. This is going to be an easy estate.” They began recounting the many assets that Grandma had accumulated and the instructions that she gave to them over the past few years. As she was declining in her past few years, she made sure…doubly sure, that everyone knew what she wanted.
When any of the grandsons raised the issue of writing this down in a Last Will & Testament, she was adamant. She would set her jaw and say “Don’t get the Courts involved in this. I am telling you […]

Explaining…A Living Will, A Healthcare Power of Attorney and POLST

2018-02-26T10:36:54-05:00February 26th, 2018|Estate Planning and Administration, General, It Happened In Our Office|

I recently received the following email from a client (names have been removed for privacy). I thought this might be something others have been questioning and it might be helpful to put in my blog.

(Client Email):

I have been thinking about our estate planning a lot recently.  Morbid – I recognize.

That said, should we add a standard clause in either the Living Will or Health Care Power of Attorney to include a dementia specific directive?  That’s the end of life condition I fear most.  Rather […]

The Story of the Stolen Grandma Part 5*

2017-08-09T09:59:23-04:00August 9th, 2017|General, It Happened In Our Office|

Grandma was now safe. She was no longer living in an unheated, barely-sanitary home. She was receiving her medications and was able to see all of her family, not just Willy. But the story was not quite over.

There were procedures to follow with the local Office of Aging in order to bring Grandma home. The office in both McKean County and Cumberland County had to be involved in bringing Grandma home. The family was now able to see her, if they wanted to make the many-hour trip.

The hope of the family was to assess all of the expense of the […]

The Result of Not Being Prepared

2017-07-12T12:09:57-04:00July 12th, 2017|General, It Happened In Our Office|

We have a client who is facing a dilemma that can best be described as heart wrenching. I’ll call her Wilma (not her real name). Wilma is a widow. She is retired with a reasonable income from her late husband’s military pension. She owns her own modest home, and does not have any large debts, just a few small credit card balances. And she has some cash in the bank, though less than $100,000. She has no living family members.

Wilma doesn’t have a Power of Attorney, Health Care Advanced Directives, Living Will, or Last Will & Testament in place. She […]

The Story of the Stolen Grandma Part 4*

2017-06-07T13:23:39-04:00June 7th, 2017|General, It Happened In Our Office|

I hung up the phone with Reba and called the local police department where Willy lived. By chance, the sergeant answered the phone — the same sergeant with whom I had been communicating all along. I explained to him the details of that morning’s phone call and the predictable reaction of the family members upon hearing this terrible pronouncement. The sergeant’s response startled me.

“I’m not going to send anyone up there,” his gruff voice sounding like an impersonation of a gangster from a 1940’s movie. “You’re not?” I responded. “No,” he said slowly. “I’m gonna go up there myself.” He […]

The Story of the Stolen Grandma Part 3*

2017-05-18T11:23:36-04:00May 18th, 2017|General, It Happened In Our Office|


We wanted to get Mom out of Willy’s house, as it was late in the fall and the house had no central heat.  We realized that Willy was holding mom against her will, but it was lining up as a “he said, she said” family fight that no one wanted to get in the middle of. It appears that Willy wanted to keep mom there with him so that he could take mom to the bank from time to time in order for her to get money out of her own account, treating her like a human ATM card.

We contacted […]

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