Author: SarahJenkins

Celebrity Estate Plans

Hugh Hefner’s Trust Requires his Beneficiaries to Stay Sober.

Hugh Hefner passed away in September 2017, he was 91.  It recently came to light that in his Trust he requires beneficiaries to stay away from any unprescribed drugs.  They also must not become dependent on alcohol. 

We all remember Hugh Hefner as the founder of Playboy Inc.  His magazines are famous, but did you know he was also a big supporter of the civil rights movements. He has quite a legacy.  He leaves behind an empire to his 31-year old widow Crystal Harris and four children between the ages of 65 and 26. Some of those children even work for the company he founded.

Hefner has a clause in his Trust that requires his loved ones to stay sober or risk loosing out on the money he left for them.  He did provide a chance to get back on good terms.  If a beneficiary stays sober for one full year they have the opportunity to reclaim their portion of the family’s fortune. But it does allow for the Trustee to drug test beneficiaries at any time if they believe they are violating the agreement. 

Putting in these sorts of clauses was actually quite common in the 1980s during the drug epidemic that Reagan fought as president.  It died off a little as time wore on.  It looks like Mr. Hefner knows what happens at his infamous Playboy parties and wants to make sure his beneficiaries are staying clean.

If you think you need this in your trust, it is easy to include.  Make sure your estate plan fits your desires and protects your family the way you want to.  Give our office a call if you need to up date your plans or need to get a start on your estate plans 818. 887.9401.

Changing Your Communication Strategy for Older Adults

Many of our clients are older adults.  They have lived long lives and are now retired.  As we grow in life our method of communication changes.  The way a mother communicates with her young child is very different then the way a father communicates with his teenage son.  Those methods of communication are different then a parent talking to an adult child about marriage or having children.   Effective communicators know that they need to change their method in order to communicate effectively with different audiences.   Since our industry focuses on older adults we are going to discuss communication methods with elderly loved ones.

Communication needs change as we grow up.  Young children need to be spoken to differently then adults.  Communication needs for elderly adults changes over time as well.  Sometimes we don’t even notice that we must begin changing our way of communicating with elderly loved ones.  The reasons we need to change is because our elderly loved ones now suffer from memory loss, slower comprehension time, psychological and aging factors.   They may also suffer from medical conditions like Alzheimer’s or dementia.  These issues can quickly create communication barriers between an adult child and their elder parent.   An adult may continue to communicate with their aging parent the same way they used to without realizing the need for change.

Communicating with an elder loved one can be frustrating if you do not change your strategy.  They may feel as though you are not listening to them, or talking to them like they were a child.  This is condescending and can escalate to a person shouting in order to get their message across.  When tempers flare this could potentially lead to elder abuse depending on what happens.  On the opposite end, communication can completely stop as the divide increases.

There are some ways to avoid these situations.  Here are some useful tips to use when communicating with an elderly loved one.

  • Lower background noise, or move to a quieter location. Distractions can make communication harder.
  • Ease into conversations.  Talk about casual topics before more serious ones, think of it as a “warm up period.”
  • Discuss topics that are familiar. This way the elder loved one can participate and become engaged.
  • Stay focused. Avoid jumping around from topic to topic.  It can be confusing.
  • Avoid being verbose.  Use short sentences and ask short questions.
  • Allow time to respond and have patience when they reminisce.
  • Offer choices rather then opened questions when decisions need to be made.
  • Listen actively.  If something is unclear ask for clarification.

Communicating with an elderly loved one does not need be frustrating. These tips can help and extra patience goes a long way.  If you have any questions or want to talk to an attorney give our office a call 818.887.9401.

Winner Daily News Reader’s Choice Award

WE WON AGAIN!! Thanks to everyone who voted!

We are so excited to announce we have won another Daily News Reader’s Choice Award!

We are so proud to have won for “Best Living Trust.”
We couldn’t do this without all of our wonderful clients!!

This is our 8th year winning this great honor. Please contact us if you or a loved one needs help with their estate plan. If you need one, we can help you create one. If you have an estate plan and it needs updating, please let us know. We can help. 818.887.9401.