How Estate Planning Helps You – HERA – ACLL September 21, 2017

How Estate Planning Helps You – While You Are Alive and Afterward will be a program offered by HERA – Housing & Economic Rights Advocates at Alameda County Law Library on Thursday, September 21, 2017 at Noon.

The HERA staff attorneys will explain key concerns and key documents that will help you address handling your belongings and your health the way you want to.

Those documents include:

  • Living trust
  • Will
  • Power of attorney
  • Advance health care directive
  • Transfer on death documents for certain kinds of accounts

About the Speakers: 

Aeyoung Kim is a staff attorney at Housing and Economic Rights Advocates (HERA) providing estate planning services and probate assistance.  Before becoming an attorney, Ms. Kim worked for 11 years in the Superior Court of San Diego County, primarily in the Probate Division as a Probate Examiner. Ms. Kim is bilingual in Korean and English.

Kendra Bowen is a staff attorney at Housing and Economic Rights Advocates (HERA) providing estate planning services.  With her Juris Doctor from UC Hastings School of Law, Ms. Bowen also brings general litigation and real estate experience.

$5.00 Registration Fee

Online registration at


Prince Died Without A Will – Don’t Be A Prince

No will

The Los Angeles Times recently published an op-ed piece entitled –  “How could someone rich and famous like Prince die without a will? It’s not unusual. Just ask an estate lawyer.”  In the piece, Jack B. Osborn, an estate attorney,  goes on to write –

Amazingly, it is not unusual for the rich and famous to die without a will. Jimi Hendrix, Pablo Picasso, Bob Marley, Howard Hughes, Sonny Bono and Abraham Lincoln all died without a will. Lincoln was the first president to die without a will even though he was an attorney.

Thinking about death, never mind what happens after you die, is hard for most people.  Mr. Osborn states that only 41% of people ages 55 to 64 have a will.  Without a will controlling the settling of an estate and distribution of the assets, the lawyer fees can take a larger share of those assets.  Mr. Osborn notes –

The American Bar Association estimates that probate proceedings cost Americans up to $2 billion per year, of which nearly $1.5 billion is paid in attorneys’ fees.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way

An individual can take a number of steps to prepare for the passing of assets to the next generation.  Alameda County Law Library makes available resources to help you research the legal issues involved with drawing up a will, planning your estate, or establishing a living (revocable during one’s life) trust.

Getting started with the process –

For the non-attorney, materials from the NOLO publishing company can be most helpful –

  • 101 Law Forms for Personal Use / NOLO Editors KF 170 .L46 2013 (Self Help) – various templates depending on your personal family situation
  • The Mom’s Guide to Wills & Estate Planning / Liza Hanks KF 750 .Z9 H3273 2009 (Self Help)
  • Make Your Own Living Trust 12th ed. / Denis Clifford  KF 734  .C58 201 (Self Help) – avoiding probate, other ways to pass on property

and one of our more useful titles as it does a wonderful job of summarizing most legal procedures and issues involving death and the transfer of property

  • How to Probate an Estate in California: A Step by Step Guide 23rd ed. / Julia Nissley KFC 205  Z9 N57 2016 (Self Help)

Many of the NOLO titles are available through the ACLL website.

  • Access the Legal Databases webpage on ACLL’s website.
  • Once you are at the page, move down the screen until you see –
NOLO (EBSCO Legal Information Reference Center)

Provides more than 220 online full text legal reference books and thousands of legal forms, the majority from Nolo, the nation’s oldest provider of legal information for consumers and small businesses including: California specific books and forms, business law, property and real estate, rights and disputes and much more. These books and forms may be searched, printed and e-mailed both from within the library and outside the library. Laptop access is available to Legal Information Reference Center materials and forms in both libraries via WiFi. Please click on EBSCO Legal Information Reference Center to connect to this database from anywhere. It is also available from the public computers’ menu at the Main Library and on a public computer at the Branch Library in Hayward.

For detailed information on how to use the the NOLO database click here.

  • The here link at the end provides instructions on how to log on to the database, as well as, search for information from a particular NOLO title.

There are other resources on the internet that are helpful when tackling the issues of drafting a will.

New to California – Transfer on Death deeds

In the past, many individuals added others to the title of real property as joint tenants in an attempt to avoid formal probate court proceedings after death.  As of the beginning of the 2016, California real property owners have another simplified option for transferring real property after death – Transfer on Death deed (TOD)  See a prior post for more information and resources on this option. POST HERE

Don’t be a Prince.  Be a prince for your heirs.  Make a tough situation simpler for them and make a will.

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Estate Planning for Your Google Afterlife

A user of Google products like Gmail, Google+, cloud storage Drive, Picasa, and YouTube can use Google Account Manager to automatically delete his Gmail, Google+, cloud storage Drive, Picasa, and YouTube data after a set time period of inactivity OR to notify a trusted friend or relative that his data can be downloaded. That set period of inactivity set by the user could be attributed to many causes. Death is one reason for inactivity. The chosen person, or up to 10 people chosen by the user, would be notified of the user’s inactivity and if previously given permission by the now departed, they would have the opportunity to download the deceased’s data. The chosen person or persons could not take over the deceased’s accounts to send emails, post photos, or load YouTube videos from the deceased’s accounts, but the data would be available for download as indicated by the deceased.
If the deceased did not utilize Google Account Manager to provide for access to his accounts after his death, there is a procedure for an authorized representative of the deceased to gain access. It is a two step process involving establishing the representative’s identity and supplying the deceased’s death certificate in the first step. Only after completing the first step may the representative go on to the second step which requires a U.S. court order and/or submitting additional materials. Visit the Google website for further information.