About

Me

My Vision

 

As a health law and elder specialist for many years, it always bothered me how expensive it is for average people to access the legal services they need.

That is why I provide AFFORDABLE WILLS AND TRUSTS,  ELDER LAW & HEALTH LAW services. My target clientele includes anyone who can not afford – or does not want to pay – the high fees of a traditional law firm.  

I offer HOME VISITS to prepare your will, power of attorney, health care power of attorney, living will and notary services. Or if you prefer, I also see clients in my office, conveniently located on Pima Street in Tucson between Craycroft & Swan Road.

I am accessible and flexible.  I will be the one who answers the phone or returns your call when you leave me a message.  For your convenience, I will meet you after work hours and on weekends.

I take pride in being a kind and compassionate lawyer.  Some of my practice is devoted to very low income clients and it is not uncommon for me to provide free advice.

I truly believe that fees for services should be reasonable and affordable without sacrificing quality. I offer flat fees for estate planning services. My flat fee packages are among the lowest in Tucson; if you find one lower by an attorney I will match it.

My Background

I have been practicing law for more than 30 years. I graduated from Northeastern University School of Law in 1984, and received  a BA in Allied Health from Goddard College in 1974.​

More About Me and My Background!

 

 

My Services

Affordable Wills

A large part of my practice is devoted to drafting wills at very affordable fees.

 

A will is your personal statement about what happens to your money and other property (called your “estate”) after you die. A will names your personal representative (or “executor”) who will be responsible to deal with your estate after you die. If you have minor children the will should name the guardian(s) responsible to care for your children. You can change your will at any time while you are still competent. My fees for wills and will packages are among the lowest for an attorney in Tucson.

Learn More About Low Cost Wills

Call, email or chat with me to discuss your needs.  I can draft a stand alone Will, or better yet, a Will Package at affordable rates.

Trusts

A trust is an alternative to a will. A living trust (not to be confused with a living will) is a legal document that creates a separate legal entity that legally "owns" your assets while you are alive, but you get to use your property just as you would ordinarily without a trust. A trust has certain advantages but not everyone needs a living trust.

Another type of trust can be created in a will (called a testamentary trust) and only goes into effect after you die.

Learn More About Trusts

 

Incapacity Planning

I believe that proper estate planning should include planning for often unexpected episodes of incapacity or disability during life. This is called Incapacity Planning and typically includes Powers of Attorney for Finances and Health Care.  If you become incapacitated, it is too late to create these documents and someone may have to petition the Probate Court for guardianship and conservatorship.  This is both expensive and time-consuming.   

I help clients ensure that their finances and health care are taken care of even if they are temporarily or permanently disabled or incapacitated.” 

For this reason, one of the most frequent services I provide to my clients is an affordable, low cost “Will Package,” consisting of a Will, a Power of Attorney for Finances, a Medical Power of Attorney and a Living Will.

Learn More About Incapacity Planning

Power of Attorney for Finances

This type of POA is a legal document in which you name someone you trust (called an “agent”) to manage your financial and personal business affairs if you are unavailable for any reason or  you become temporarily or permanently incapacitated. You can authorize this person to handle almost any of your financial / business matters, or it can be very limited (i.e.,  to pay your bills for you or to sell a piece of real estate).

 

It can go into effect immediately after you sign it (which makes it easier for the agent to step in quickly if necessary), or it can “spring” into effect only if you become incapacitated (and the agent will need to provide evidence from your physician that you are incapacitated).

Medical Directives

A medical directive usually consists of two parts: A  POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR HEALTH CARE – in which you designate someone (your health care agent) to make decisions about your medical treatment if you are not able to do so because you are too sick to communicate or you are temporarily or permanently incapacitated. Whenever you can communicate, you get to make the decisions; your health care agent only makes decisions for you if you cannot do so for yourself;. In addition, I recommend that you consider executing a LIVING WILL (also called an Advance Directive or Advance Health Care Directive) in which you describe what type of treatment you would prefer if you are terminally ill, in a coma or vegetative state. This is especially important if you do not want aggressive treatment or life-sustaining procedures to keep you alive, as the default in the U.S. is to 

Probate Administration

Probate is the legal process that is often necessary to settle our financial affairs after we have passed away. The process usually involves going to court and:

  • appointing a personal representative to handle the process

  • proving in court that a deceased person's will is valid  

  • identifying and inventorying the deceased person's property

  • having the property appraised

  • paying debts and taxes, and

  • distributing the remaining property as the will (or state law, if there's no will) directs.

 

Probate is not necessarily the awful process you believe it to be. Arizona has several procedures that make this an easier process with less court involvement,  such as a Small Estate procedure, and Informal Probate;  (the Formal Probate process usually only applies to more complex matters or those that require court supervision).  Probate consists of carefully completing a lot of forms and a lot of highly detailed work. An uncomplicated probate case can take about  six months.  

Elder Law

Elder Law

Elder law involves a wide variety of legal and practical issues affecting the elderly, their caretakers, and their friends and family members.

Some common issues involve health care, long term care planning, end-of- life, guardianship, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and financial planning.

Elder law involves a wide variety of legal and practical issues affecting the elderly, their caretakers, and their friends and family members.

Some common issues involve health care, long term care planning, end-of- life, guardianship, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and financial planning.

Health Law and Patient Advocacy

Health Law and Patient Advocacy

As a former hospital and health system attorney, I learned a lot about patient care matters, and dealing with the complex health care system. I am able to advocate for you with your health care providers, navigating the health care system, making choices about health care plans and health care providers, pharmacy benefits, providing information and guidance with end of life decisions, and resolving billing issues.

As a former hospital and health system attorney, I learned a lot about patient care matters, and dealing with the complex health care system. I am able to advocate for you with your health care providers, navigating the health care system, making choices about health care plans and health care providers, pharmacy benefits, providing information and guidance with end of life decisions, and resolving billing issues.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Contact

Me

Law Office of Jodi M. Bernstein

5210 E. Pima Street, Ste 105C,
Tucson AZ 85712

My Email

jodi.bernstein@outlook.com 

My Phone No.

(520) 775-1819

 
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© 2017 by Law Office of Jodi M. Bernstein