South Bend Elder Caring Law


Douglas D Germann’s
South Bend Elder Caring Law


Elder Caring Attorney

The most loving way to practice Elder Caring Law? Share your ideas.

Oct 16, Autumn


Update August 7, 2020: New cleaner office air:

On August 7, 2020, in order to have a little safer air in our offices for client conferences when the weather turns (until then we will continue to meet outdoors, such as on our front porch), we have installed on our furnace a Nu-Calgon iWave®-R ionizing air cleaner, and also provided for additional outside air to be introduced to the system. As with all things COVID-19, we cannot know if it helps much, but we are doing what we think makes sense.

Update May 29, 2020: Termination of remote signing of Wills:

In Order 20S-CB-123, Indiana’s Supreme Court determined that the remote signing order would expire at the end of 2020.

New March 31, 2020: Indiana Supreme Court
allows remote signing of Wills:

In Order 20S-MS-00237, our Indiana Supreme Court allowed for audio-video signing of Wills and Codicils (amendments to Wills) and other Estate Planning documents normally requiring physical presence of all the people in one room. This is an emergency order and will end after the covid-19 emergency ends. New clauses need to be put in the Will to use this, and the documents need to ratified and re-signed within 90 days after the emergency ends (the court on May 1 refined this to the later order of the Court, and then on November 10, set an expiration date of July 1, 2021). See your lawyer for help.

Caring for your elders at home or in facilities:

Your loved one who is in quarantine in a facility can use some tablets we have purchased tablets for conferences with family and with us. We are happy to loan these to you.

Medicaid and VA are still helping pay for care of your elders, both in facilities and at home. We can help you sort that out, and know people who can help you choose a facility even if you can no longer tour one.


Telephone conferences are always available. 574 291 0022

Video conferencing allows you and Doug and Becky to share screens and look at documents together. Not as good as face to face, but still pretty good.

Travel to and from our offices:

You may visit us for in-person meetings and services. Please call ahead to make sure we are healthy and to let us know you too are healthy. (Legal services are “essential businesses” under Indiana Governor Holcomb’s Stay-At-Home order. We are not required to close.)

If you wish, we will visit you. For the duration of the pandemic, we are waiving trip charges for in-town visits.


We are using electronic transfers such as Dropbox or via encrypted email ([email protected]) as much as we can. We are also using mail.

Signing documents:

You may first go over the documents with us via Zoom or Skype or other video conference providers. Then we can keep our face to face time short.

We have latex gloves you can use in our office.

We wipe down the door handles, edges of doors, conference tables, pens, and whatever was touched, after every person leaves.

We are also doing car-side signings, weather permitting.

Outside of this emergency, Indiana law requires Wills to be signed in the physical presence of two witnesses. You may still want to do that to avoid having to sign again in 90 days under the March 31, 2020 special order above. There may be workarounds if you are in quarantine or isolation. Call us to talk through your options.

Family, community, professional community gatherings:

Doug has been facilitating professional and family gatherings via zoom. If you have a topic you’d like to explore and how others are dealing with it, give Doug a call and we’ll set up a conference for you and facilitate it. 574 291 0022

Oldsters reaching out:

Saw a news story about youngsters playing music and singing on videos for oldsters. It triggered for me stories I had seen about prisoners recording bedtime stories for their children, and about grandmothers tutoring children half a world away. Our elders in isolation could do similar things, spelling parents from home schooling tasks, perhaps. Telling stories of how things were in the past (reminiscent of The Foxfire books), recounting the library that each oldster is. Recordings of these could go in the family and community archives.

Want to be one of this group of Oldsters, and help Olsters caring for the world during covid-19? Call Doug 574 291 0022



There are many forms linked from the above pages. Click to the page you are interested in, and that page will link to the forms available for that subject.

You may be wondering about our term Elder Caring. See here.

Living well at the end of life....

Would your group like to see, free, all or part of the documentary, Consider the Conversation, and have a facilitated conversation around living well at the end of life? (Click the video cover or link above to find a list of upcoming screenings.) We also have the Emmy-nominated Consider the Conversation 2, which takes the conversation deeper. Find out how Doctors want to die, and how it is different from most of the rest of us!

Are we the right Elder Caring Law firm for your family? Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Medicaid, Long-Term Care and the like–the usual projects of Elder Lawyers–we approach with an eye not to selling a document, but to counsel and converse toward wholeness for your tribe and developing your loved one’s eldering. Take a look around and see if we might fit together.

Wheel Chair AccessibleDouglas D. Germann, Sr., Professional Corporation P.O. Box 2796, South Bend, IN 46680-2796 telephone 574/291-0022; fax 574/291-0024 email [email protected] com
Physical location: 21136 Kern Road, South Bend.
Wills & Trusts | Medicaid | Long-Term Care | Veterans | Probate & Estates | Powers of Attorney | Emergency Medical