Power of Attorney Decision

As you age, you should consider this question: what will happen if you or your loved ones are
no longer able to make medical, financial or legal decisions for yourselves? It is exceedingly
important that anyone who is 18 years of age or older and of sound mind and body gives
another person a “Power of Attorney” so that he/she can make those decisions when you no
longer can. This person may be given very broad powers or limited powers. The person
appointed is known as a “power of attorney agent” or “attorney-in-fact.” It is imperative to
name someone whom you trust and who understands your wishes. You may structure your
power of attorney so that it takes effect in one of two ways: (1) immediately and remains in
effect after your incapacity (“durable”), or (2) upon your incapacity (known as a “springing”
power of attorney). Finally, it is essential to remember that a power of attorney applies only
when an individual is alive. Once a person is deceased, the terms of an individual’s will or trust
dictate how financial and other matters are handled. Creating a clear and unambiguous Power
of Attorney is essential. Christina Malyan of Malyan Law with each client to ensure that his/her
Power of Attorney accurately captures his/her wishes. For a free consultation, contact Malyan
Law at (818) 638-0082.

It is imperative for anyone who is 18 years of age or older to have a medical directive while they
are still of sound mind and body. A medical directive, also known as an advance healthcare
directive, is a legal document in which you set forth the measures that should be taken for your
health in the event that you become incapacitated. A directive enables you to plan your
medical treatment in advance in the event that you are unable to express your personal health
care preferences. Additionally, a directive allows you to express your wishes about the use of
emergency measures to sustain life, including the use of CPR, a ventilator, artificial nutrition
(“tube feeding”) and palliative care (known as “end of life care,” which includes decisions
related to what measures should be taken to provide you with physical comfort, meet your
mental and emotional needs and handle practical tasks). It is essential that you spend the time
needed for advance care planning. Doing so eliminates any ambiguity related to the medical
care you wish to receive when you no longer have the mental capacity to express those
decisions yourself. In addition, an advanced health care directive ensures that your wishes will
be followed because HIPAA (The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) prohibits
doctors, hospitals or other health care providers from discussing any medical information with
family or friends absent your consent. Medical directives apply only when a person is alive, not
after the person has passed away. It is imperative that people work with a Trusts and Estates
attorney to ensure that their medical directives accurately reflect their wishes. Christina
Malyan prides herself on working hand-in-hand with her clients to make sure their needs are
met. For a free consultation, contact Malyan Law at (818) 638-0082.

Guardianship Nomination Document

Parents often think that a guardianship nomination is only important when they have assets
that will be passed onto their children in the event of their death. However, even if you lack
assets necessitating a trust, it is vital to have a guardianship nomination document in place.
This document is of paramount importance because it sets forth how your minor children are to
be treated should both parents pass away. You may specify the individual(s) you would like the
court to appoint as your children’s legal guardian and leave specific instructions related to their
care. The guardian must be at least 18 years old without any conviction of felonies or
misdemeanors. If you fail to name a guardian, the court lacking any knowledge of your wishes,
may appoint someone. In order to appoint a legal guardian, you must name that person(s) in
your Will. It is highly advised that you retain a skilled and experienced estate planning attorney
to determine that all documents comply with current law and that the Will is precisely worded.
Christina Malyan of Malyan Law works closely with her clients to ensure that the legal process
is as seamless as possible. To schedule a free consultation, contact Ms. Malyan at (818) 688-
2288.

Another Vehicle Runs a Light

Imagine the following scenario: you are driving. Another vehicle runs a light, crashes into your
car, causing significant damage to the driver’s side of your vehicle and injuring your back in the
process. Although you are pained and frustrated knowing that your automobile will need
substantial repairs, you are relieved because the accident was the other driver’s fault. His
insurance will pay for your losses. This should be the logical conclusion. This may, however, not
be the case.
California law requires all drivers to maintain a minimum amount of insurance coverage. That
said, approximately 18% of drivers in California were uninsured in 2021. Of the remaining 83%
of drivers, a significant number of those were underinsured, meaning that they lacked sufficient
coverage to compensate for the injured party’s losses. California only requires drivers to
purchase $15,000 of liability insurance, and, as a result, innocent parties often find themselves
paying significant amounts. To avoid this risk, California law allows drivers to add
uninsured/under-insured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage to their auto insurance policies.
UMC/UIM coverage pays when the driver who is at fault either has no insurance at all or
insufficient insurance to cover the other party’s medical bills and losses. Although not
mandatory, purchasing this coverage is extremely beneficial. It enables you to pay car repair
bills, medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering and other subsequent losses. UIM coverage
treats the other driver as underinsured for damages in excess of the at-fault driver’s policy
limits. Compensation depends upon the limit of the UIM policy.
If you are the victim of a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, it is essential
that you retain an attorney who can advocate tirelessly to ensure you receive all compensation
to which you are entitled. Navigating the insurance system can be onerous and intimidating.
Christina Malyan of Malyan Law is a skilled and experienced personal injury attorney who will
give your case her undivided attention. For a free case evaluation, contact Ms. Malyan at (818)
688-2288.