About Me

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Beaverton, Oregon, United States
I'm an attorney at Aaby Family Law in Beaverton, Oregon. (www.aabyfamilylaw.com) I practice probate and estate planning, including estate planning for same sex couples. kgapinski@aabyfamilylaw.com

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Five Legal Documents Same-Sex Couples Need in Texas

Lon Watts and Jim Heath (photo from The New Civil Rights Movement)
 You may have heard the story of Lon Watts and Jim Heath, a gay Texan couple who were together for 34 for years, when Jim's health began to fail.  Texas is one of the many states prohibiting same sex marriage.  Lon states Jim's sister has forced them apart because they are not married.  Jim's sister got a guardianship over Jim, moved him to a nursing home, and has stopped allowing Jim to visit, in spite of Lon having a Power of Attorney for Jim.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Will Contest of Copper Mining Heiress

Huguette Clark in 1930.  (Photo credit: Associated Press)

The New York Times had an interesting article, entitled, How to Avoid an Estate Battle After You Die, about a month ago about the death of Huguette Clark.   Ms. Clark was the only surviving heiress of William A. Clark, a former US Senator, who was wealthy from the copper mining business.  Ms. Clark's estate is worth $300 million. There is a dispute over two wills she signed in 2005.  


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Can I visit my same-sex partner in the hospital?

There are many horror stories of same sex couples who have tried to visit one partner in the hospital, only to be denied by hospital staff or hostile family members.  This is an issue that makes many same sex couples anxious - and rightfully so.  

Here is what you need to know about visiting your same sex partner in the hospital:

(1)  If your same sex partner is in a hospital or long term care facility that participates in Medicare or Medicaid, you have the right to visit your partner.  The hospital also must honor your partner's Advance Directive.

This rule has been in effect since January 2011.  The authority for this law is in the Code of Federal Regulations, which states if a hospital participates in Medicare or Medicaid, they must do the following:


Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Transferring title of your home to a trust and due-on-sale clauses

Q: Will transferring title of my home to my revocable living trust trigger my due-on-sale clause in my mortgage?

A: The short answer is no (with some exceptions).
  Many mortgages have due-on-sale or "acceleration" clauses - when you transfer title (such as when you sell it), your mortgage holder can demand the loan be paid in full.


Monday, July 8, 2013

LGBTQ Federal Rights - Q&A July 9, Aug. 6 - Hollywood Library, Portland, OR

I received this announcement this morning from Portland attorney, Cynthia Barrett.  If anyone is interested in a Q&A session on legal rights after DOMA, this is worth checking out:
Wondering how the new Supreme Court decisions will affect you?

The Supreme Court killed the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013, and federal agencies are issuing new rules and procedures to grant LGBTQ couples spousal rights.  What do you need to know, and how can you take advantage of these changes?

Attorneys Cynthia L. Barrett and Tabitha Lundberg Koh are following these changes, and invite you, a client or friend of their offices, to attend one of the two free sessions exploring how the expansion of federal rights to LGBTQ couples will affect you. 

July 9, 2013         5:30 – 7:30 p.m.  Hollywood Library  4040 NE Tillamook Street

August 6, 2013  5:30-7:30 p.m.     Hollywood Library  4040 NE Tillamook Street


Friday, July 5, 2013

After DOMA...what now?

Now that DOMA has been ruled unconstitutional, federal agencies are trying to figure out how to interpret the laws.  The question is - What happens next?

GLAD.org has a great series of fact sheets, produced with a number of LGBT organizations, and it looks like they are updating them as new information comes in.


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

"After DOMA Ruling, Government Scrambles To Adjust"

There was an interesting piece about DOMA on NPR's All Things Considered yesterday.  The story is about four and a half minutes long and is definitely worth a listen.

Since the Court's June 26, 2013 ruling, different federal government agencies have been trying to figure out how to interpret the ruling.  There are over 1,049 federal laws dealing with marriage - granting both rights and responsibilities.

Here are some highlights from the NPR piece:


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Talking About Death Brings End of Life Benefits

NBC's Rock Center aired a segment about a hospital in Wisconsin where 96% of it's patients have Advance Directives.  The video clip below shows the 30 Rock segment. 

One of the doctors featured called an Advance Directive, "A gift you’re giving to your family."  She went on to say,  "This is hard. This is difficult. But this is what mom or dad really wanted."  It's important to make end-of-life decisions now, when you are able to do so.  It removes the burden on your family of guessing what you might have wanted.

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