Estate Planning and Probate Law

Estate Planning is the creation of a written plan for the management and distribution of your property.  An estate plan can be a simple Last Will and Testament or can include a Revocable Living Trust, Pour-over Will, Durable Power of Attorney for Financial Affairs, Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care/Advanced Health Care Directive, and Nomination of Guardianship for those with young children or Nomination of Conservator for more mature clients.

An example:

A client’s granddaughter was suffering from serious physical disabilities leaving her unable to work and in need of public assistance. The client’s estate was modest however a direct gift to the granddaughter on her grandmother’s death would have given her a sufficient amount to terminate her support. The granddaughter would have had to spend her inheritance and attempt to re-qualify for support services…an often long and difficult process. Jim structured the grandmother’s estate to create a Special Needs Trust to be administered by a sibling, and then designed the trust with enhancements that would supplement the granddaughter’s benefits without causing any termination of services.

“My attorney, James D Allen is courteous, ethical and has the ability to make complex legal matters understandable. He took an issue regarding one of my relatives and my estate and transformed it into a “Special Needs Trust” that was clear and simple. If the need arises, I will use him again.” A.F. Santa Rosa

“We retained Mr. Allen to update our estate plan when we moved to California several years ago.  He proved an excellent choice-a friendly counselor, a good listener and a first-rate legal professional.”  Maurice F.


Estate Planning and Probate Law

“Jim Allen was referred to me by a friend who had a long term business relationship with him.  During a very painful and traumatic time for me, he expeditiously and compassionately handled a somewhat complicated probate of a family member’s estate.  He subsequently represented me in a contentious ADA lawsuit.  Jim handled both situations as a true professional, with the utmost integrity and honesty, instilling confidence in his ability.  He was also very kind and caring throughout.  I could not recommend him more highly.”  G.P.