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Posted by Sasha Golden | Mar 22, 2011 | 0 Comments

Incapacity and death are scary prospects for most of us. As an elder law attorney, I see the consequences of failing to cope with the fear. Not facing your fears and meeting with an elder law or estate planning attorney can result in a lot of stress for your family — and a lot of expenses for you and your family when I get hired to clean up the legal and financial mess that didn't have to happen.

If you're incapacitated and don't have a durable power of attorney, someone will need to go to court for a conservatorship appointment in order to manage your finances. This can get pricey. Not only will there be legal fees and court costs, but the would-be conservator will need to get a surety bond. Depending on the amount of assets you have (aside from real estate), the cost of a surety bond can run from several hundred to several thousand dollars — every year. If your house needs to be sold or a mortgage obtained, there will be legal fees and court costs for that. If a trust needs to be set up to help manage your assets — yep, more legal fees and costs.

And let's not forget the amount of time it can take from when the paperwork is filed to the day a court order is actually issued — often 8 to 10 weeks or more.

All this lost time, money and work… it's all avoidable with a durable power of attorney.

About the Author

Sasha Golden

Alexandra “Sasha” Golden received her undergraduate and law degrees from Boston College, and has been practicing law in Massachusetts since 1994. Attorney Golden is a long-standing member of the Massachusetts chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) and of the Probate and So...


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