A Practical Guide to Legal Issues for Older People

Author(s): Vicki Ammundsen, Hugh Ammundsen, Catherine Atchison, Kathryn Dalziel, Professor Kate Diesfeld, Dr Mark Fisher, Elaine Henderson A Practical Guide to Legal Issues for Older People


This new book gives practical guidance on the legal issues affecting people as they age. It covers the issues involved in planning for older age, the issues faced by older people as they deal with new and changing circumstances, planning for how to deal with estates and assets and, finally, the often inconvenient issues of dealing with death and what follows.

Topics covered include:

  • multiple-generational households
  • residential care subsidies
  • family trusts issues as trustees and settlors age
  • retirement funding
  • elder abuse
  • family loans
  • powers of attorney
  • mental capacity, and
  • wills.

The book includes contributions from practitioners with deep experience in particular subject areas to ensure that it provides useful knowledge and advice about the key stages in life and the needs of people at those stages. It is divided into 19 practical chapters that encompass different real life issues affecting people as they age.

Who should read this Guide:

This practical Guide will be useful both for professionals dealing with older clients and for older people and their families grappling with the inevitable issues associated with aging.

Chapter Overview:


Keeping Matters under Review — highlights the need to maintain regular reviews of matters that affect older clients and their families and is structured by reference to a useful framework for addressing legal issues.

Ethics with Older Clients — considers the ethical obligations that apply to professionals, which can too easily be overlooked as people age and require greater family assistance.

Capacity Assessment — introduces the legal concept of capacity, provides an overview of the capacity assessment process and applies them in a range of age-related concepts.

Wills — is a comprehensive assessment of wills and all matters relating to death, testamentary promises and wishes, including challenges to wills.

Enduring Powers of Attorney for Property — addresses enduring powers of attorney in relation to property as well as the alternative process for appointing a property manager.

Planning for Personal Care and Welfare — considers health and disability rights and related consumer matters and the enduring power of attorney (personal care and welfare).

Family Trust Matters — canvases a plethora of issues surrounding trusts and the realities of long-term intergenerational asset and estate planning. The consequences of incapacity are discussed and practical case studies are provided.

Residential Care Subsidies — gives a concise overview of the residential care subsidy.

Later-Life Relationships — explores the practical realties of romantic relationships for older people.

Retirement Funding and Income — looks at a range of retirement funding and income issues for older clients, including reverse annuity mortgages and other relevant financial products.

Retirement Villages — provides a comprehensive, current guide to retirement villages, including advice on occupation licences and other matters a person contemplating a retirement village needs to know about and understand.

Care in the Community — identifies and discusses community care options and services for older people.

Multi-Generational Households — provides a far-ranging consideration of issues that arise in multi-generational living situations. It includes a useful question and answer section that helps to explore the pitfalls that can arise when multiple generations share a home.

Elder Abuse — discusses the regrettable reality of elder abuse and the different forms it takes. It provides practical guidance on how to identify elder abuse and how to seek help.

Human Rights and Discrimination — considers the human rights and discrimination legislation that applies to older people.

Family Loans — includes practical case studies relating to issues relating to family loans. It includes a precedent Acknowledgement of Debt and a checklist of important matters to consider.

Older People and Criminal Law — discusses the issues facing older people in the context of criminal law.

Funeral Arrangements — provides information about funeral plans and pre-paid funerals.

Mitigating Family Disputes upon Death — is a practical guide to ways to mitigate family disputes that might cause significant problems after someone’s death.

Publication dateSeptember 2019
Books ISBN: 9781775472759
ADLS Members $ 86.40
Non-Members (lawyer) $ 96.00
Non-Members (public) $ 96.00
Add to cart Become a member

Prices exclude GST and Postage & Packaging

For international orders – please call the Book Store on +64 9 306 5740 to arrange delivery.

If you require this paper urgently and instead prefer to receive it electronically, then please instead email cpd@adls.org.nz or call 09 303 5278

Contact Us
Phone 09 303 5270
Fax 09 309 3726
Email reception@adls.org.nz