By Somita Basu
Bay Area law firm, Norton Basu LLP, has announced new COVID-19 safety protocols and an initiative offering complimentary services for Santa Clara County healthcare workers and first responders. The firm specializes in estate planning and probate issues, including living trusts, wills, conservatorships, durable power of attorney, and advanced health care directives.
According to founding partner, Somita Basu, “We are sheltering in place, following mandates from county health officials. At the same time, we’re making every effort to remain accessible to our clients during these uncertain times.” The law firm has moved to virtual services, in most cases, and deployed strict protocols for socially distant signings. Safety measures include the use of disposable pens and ink strips, as well as gloves, facemasks, and spatial precautions during signings. “We are closely monitoring evolving public health and community concerns related to COVID-19, while our virtual office remains open during regular business hours,” said Ms. Basu. Secure Zoom video calls are available by appointment for existing and prospective clients.
In support of front-line Santa Clara County healthcare workers and first responders, Norton Basu LLP, partnering with Hyatt Place San Jose Downtown, has launched an initiative offering assistance with key estate planning documents. “We are grateful to all the first responders and healthcare professionals working to protect the public during the pandemic,” said founding partner, Zakiya Norton. “To help ease uncertainty for essential personnel, we are preparing free professionally drafted advanced health care directives and powers of attorney for medical workers and first responders. We invite Santa Clara County professionals to schedule a virtual appointment today. A copy of a work ID is all that is required to get these documents in place at no cost.”
Power of attorney assigns an agent, designated to act on an individual’s behalf, should the person become incapacitated. The legal document is notarized, allocating specific powers to the appointed agent; it is then presented at institutions, granting an agent access to accounts and information. Also known as a living will, an advanced health care directive documents an individual’s wishes and priorities for end-of-life care. The document assigns an agent to carry out a person’s preferences and is then shared with doctors and institutions providing care. According to Ms. Norton, “As we all continue to grapple with the impacts of the Coronavirus pandemic, drafting these important documents is more important than ever. We want to do our small part supporting men and women on the front lines.”
All final documents will be delivered and notarized at Hyatt Place – San Jose Downtown. “We’re immensely grateful to our healthcare workers and first responders in Santa Clara County and are honored to be able to provide our event space for this important initiative. The large ballroom will allow for ease of implementation of social distancing protocols,” says Ru Paster, Director of Sales at Hyatt Place San Jose Downtown.
Somita Basu is a founder of Norton Basu LLP, which offers legal advice and services throughout the Bay Area and Southern California, with a focus on estate planning and probate issues. The firm maintains offices in Santa Clara and Beverly Hills.