Law Office of Neil P. Thompson
Law Office of Neil P. Thompson
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Elder Law

Seniors Receive Increased Protection From Financial Abuse In The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, And Consumer Protection Act
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: September 22, 2021

The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act provides seniors with more protection from financial abuse. The Act contains a section that was once a stand-alone bill from Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) which is designed to encourage the reporting of elder (age 65 and older) financial abuse witnessed by financial institutions. The Act does not mandate that these institutions report financial abuse directed towards elders to avoid penalties, rather it gives them an incentive to do so. The Act provides immunity from any lawsuit alleging elder financial abuse if the financial institution reports it to state or federal law enforcement agents. To qualify for immunity, a financial institution has to create and administer a training program for employees to teach the employees how to spot elder financial abuse. This Act provides immunity to financial…Read More

You’re Appointed Trustee, Now What?
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: September 1, 2021

A friend of yours, Rose, has asked you to be the trustee of her trust. You want to help, but you’re concerned about all that responsibility. You would be managing Rose’s property for her and for others whom she names as beneficiaries. You might be paying her bills and taxes, overseeing bank accounts, making investments, collecting rent or unpaid debts, getting insurance if needed, and doing whatever else the trust directs you to do. People named as trustees are considered in law as “fiduciaries.” “Fiduciary” stems from the Latin for “trust.” To merit that trust, you must act in Rose’s best interests, to the highest ethical standards of good faith and honesty. It is a lot of responsibility, but the government is here to help. The Consumer Financial Protection Board (CFPB) has issued a guide:…Read More

A Source Of Comfort And Peace For Your Family – A Letter Of Intent
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: August 18, 2021

A letter of intent (LOI), also referred to as a letter of instruction, communicates important information to your loved ones that may not be covered in the general estate planning documents. Your LOI is a valuable piece in your estate planning, and although it is an informal letter, it can more fully represent your intentions after you die. Everyone knows they need to make a will, but this lesser-known document can also be a crucial estate planning tool. What Is A Letter Of Intent? The letter itself has no legal standing, so it can’t supersede a will. Still, a letter of intent, also called a letter of instruction, can be of enormous practical and emotional value to your loved ones. A letter of intent conveys essential information about personal and financial matters in combination with your…Read More

A Guide For Understanding How Pet Trusts Work
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: August 11, 2021

Hotel heiress Leona Helmsley left a trust fund for her Maltese dog named “Trouble” to the tune of $12 million dollars in 2007. Unfortunately, pet inheritances ever since have enjoyed a dubious reputation. The Value Of An Animal Trust For Your Pet For those who care about the well-being of their animals or livestock, animal trusts can play an essential role in ensuring that the animals get the care they need after the principal caregiver passes. After all, estate planning aims to provide for the family, and many of us consider animals as part of the family. Trusts can ensure that money is put aside to care for animals when the animal’s primary human is no longer there. This legal document is significant for long-lived animals like parrots, horses, or tortoises. Because trusts avoid the…Read More

Make Sure Your End-Of-Life Wishes Are Followed By Preparing A Power-Of-Attorney
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: August 4, 2021

Attorney’s prepare powers-of-attorney documents for clients in order to communicate their wishes and delegate an entrusted person to make decisions on the clients’ behalf when their clients no longer can. But when it comes to actually using those documents at the time of a healthcare crisis, clear and powerful documents are just the beginning. The decision points can (and must) be put down on paper in advance, but when it comes to end-of-life situations, the clarity on which we lawyers thrive can be very hard to find. Sitting in her lawyer’s office, the client may have been quite certain about health-care decisions. She does not want her life prolonged by a battery of aggressive treatments, where these would not preserve her quality of life. She does not want blood transfusions, dialysis, repeated courses of antibiotics…Read More

Are Tech Companies Jeopardizing Your Health Care Privacy?
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: June 16, 2021

Big Tech giants like Google, Amazon, and Apple are investing heavily in the healthcare tech field. Some of the businesses are underway, like storing medical records in the cloud for a fee or using patient forms that have been “anonymized” to create new tools. Some products already cater directly to patients, such as wearable medical devices with monitoring capabilities through the internet of things. Lobbying efforts by Silicon Valley “encouraged” the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as they defined the rule, known as the Cures Act, improving patient access to all of their electronic health information (EHI) and standardizing their formatting for ease of interoperability. While there is a need to continue the modernization of the health care system, the complexity of the undertaking (legacy computer systems and data), entrenched financial interests, and…Read More

A Difficult Problem: Age Discrimination
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: June 2, 2021

Since the 1960’s, lawmakers have continued to tackle age discrimination in the workplace. According to study.com, age discrimination is defined as “the practice of letting a person’s age unfairly become a factor when deciding who receives a new job, promotion, or other job benefits. Decisions about terminating employees also cannot be solely based on their age.” Age discrimination is illegal and there are laws to protect people from it. The Law The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is the federal law that protects job applicants and workers over the age of 40 from age discrimination. There are a few exceptions of groups that are not included in the ADEA. These include elected officials, military personnel, and independent contractors. The law applies to employers with at least 20 employees or labor organizations with at least…Read More

The Many Benefits Of Having An Elder Law Attorney
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: May 5, 2021

As the baby boomer generation ages and the influx of international migration continues, the senior citizen population of the United States is growing quickly. Although the US average life expectancy has seen a slight three-year decline, many Americans, men, and women live well into their 80s, 90s, and beyond. An elder law attorney works with seniors, taking a holistic approach to the legal issues people commonly face as they age. These include matters of housing, physical and financial health, estate planning, and more. There are as many issues as there are seniors, as life circumstances are different for everyone. An attorney who specializes in the host of the problems senior citizens face can be a wise investment. Whether you have a lucrative business and many assets, or a small home with a modest bank account,…Read More

Who Do You Want To Make Financial Decisions For You?
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: April 21, 2021

It is hard to know who to trust with managing your financial well being when you are no longer able to do so? A power of attorney (POA), otherwise known as an agent to your principal, has the legal authority to represent and make decisions on your behalf. What characteristics should you look for when designating a power of attorney? No matter what type of power of attorney you seek to arrange, your potential agent must be a person you deem to be trustworthy and honorable to conduct your affairs in your best interest. Often the principal who designates the POA may prefer to choose a family member such as a spouse or adult child. If a family member is unable or unwilling to act when needed you can name a trusted friend or retain…Read More

Important Information And Different Options For Life Insurance
  • By: Neil P. Thompson, Esq.
  • Published: April 14, 2021

Given the reality of living in today’s world, mortality is something we need to think about and ensure we have plans in place to take care of our loved ones should we perish unexpectedly. Life insurance can be an affordable way to provide for our children, a spouse, a sibling, aging parents, and other loved ones. Life insurance can provide heirs numerous benefits: extra income to help pay ongoing household bills; funds to pay off a mortgage, credit cards and other debt; money to pay for college, or money to pay funeral costs and other final expenses. For business owners, life insurance also plays a vital role in business succession planning. A simple way to determine the amount of life insurance needed for income replacement purposes is to multiply the annual income to be replaced…Read More

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