Legal Concerns for the Senior Care Professional

Legal Concerns for the Senior Care Professional 

The purpose of this course is to help senior care professionals understand the most common and pressing legal issues that may arise when caring for elders. This course covers legal issues that concern all elderly people and their caregivers, including self-determination and incapacity; advance directives like living wills and healthcare power of attorney; guardianship and conservatorship; estate-planning tools like wills and living trusts; and financial power of attorney.


Hours: 1.00


Certificates provided by accrediting body (0 Match)

Course Details

Course Code: REL-PAC-0-MGMT4216
Hours: 1
Type: Online Course
Content Expiration Date: 6/30/2022
Learning Objectives:
Identify the legal importance of testamentary and contractual capacity in making legal decisions
Identify the role of advance directives, including living wills, in helping seniors maintain self-determination after incapacity
Recognize the powers, rights, and responsibilities given in durable power of attorney agreements for healthcare and financial decisions
Understand the guardianship process as well as the powers, duties, and legal liabilities of guardians
Acknowledge the importance of estate planning in preventing financial exploitation
Craft and execute estate-planning tools like wills and living trusts


  1. Self-Determination and Capacity

    1. Testamentary capacity

      1. Insane delusion

      2. Undue influence

    2. Contractual capacity

    3. Determining incapacity

  2. Advance Directives

    1. The Patient Self-Determination Act

    2. How to create an advance directive

    3. What happens without an advance directive

    4. Power of attorney for healthcare decisions

      1. Durable versus nondurable power of attorney

      2. Durable versus “springing” power of attorney

        1. Legal problems with springing power

      3. Choosing a healthcare agent

      4. The powers of a healthcare agent

      5. Benefits of durable power of attorney

    5. Living will

      1. Issues addressed in a living will

      2. Legal requirements for a valid living will

      3. Do-not-resuscitate orders

      4. Benefits of living wills

  3. Guardianship

    1. The guardianship process

    2. Powers of a guardian

    3. Duties of a guardian

    4. Common legal issues with guardianship

      1. Guardianship not tailored to specific needs

      2. Guardian does not consult with ward

      3. Guardian limits ward’s interpersonal relationships

  4. Estate Planning

    1. Financial exploitation

      1. Defining financial exploitation

      2. Recognizing financial exploitation

    2. Preventing financial exploitation through estate planning

    3. Wills and living trusts

      1. What can and can’t be included in a will

      2. Legal requirements for making a valid will

      3. Letter of instruction

      4. What happens without a will

      5. Naming an executor

        1. Executor abuse

      6. Disinheritance

      7. Joint wills

      8. Probate

        1. The probate process

        2. Contesting probate

        3. Avoiding probate

          1. Joint property ownership

          2. Death beneficiaries

          3. Gifts

          4. Living trusts

            1. Benefits of living trusts

            2. Pour-over wills

    4. Power of attorney for financial matters

      1. Fiduciary responsibilities

        1. Acting in the principal’s best interest

        2. Managing the principal’s estate carefully

        3. Keeping the principal’s estate separate

        4. Keeping good records

      2. Rights and responsibilities of a financial agent

      3. Preventing abuse by financial agents

      4. Financial power of attorney versus representative payee

      5. Separating financial and medical powers of attorney

  5. Conclusion

Instructor: Eric Chalfant, PhD
Dr. Eric Chalfant is a professional researcher and author with a PhD in religious studies from Duke University. He honed his research skills as a nationally-ranked collegiate policy debater and debate coach at Whitman College. In addition to his work for OnCourse Learning, Eric has contributed to Duke University's National Congregation Study and has edited and published scholarly works for Oxford University Press. Disclosure: Eric Chalfant, PhD has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Relias will be transparent in disclosing if any commercial support, sponsorship or co-providership is present prior to the learner completing the course.
Course Delivery Method and Format
Asynchronous/Online Distance Learning; please see certificate details for specifics on delivery format.
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All courses offered by Relias, LLC are developed from a foundation of diversity, inclusiveness, and a multicultural perspective. Knowledge, values and awareness related to cultural competency are infused throughout the course content.
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All characteristics and organizations referenced in the following training are fictional. Any resemblance to any actual organizations or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.
To earn continuing education credit for this course you must achieve a passing score of 80% on the post-test and complete the course evaluation.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Customer Support here.