Elder law focuses on the legal needs of older adults encompassing more significant issues like long-term health care needs, quality of life, and financial well-being. Specific planning may include estate planning and administration, asset protection planning, Medicaid planning and applications, wills and trusts, probate, advance directives, special needs planning, and guardianships.
How would you answer the following questions?
- Do you have a will, and has it been updated in the last five years?
- Are your assets protected in the event you require home care or nursing home care?
- Do you have a living will, including a health care proxy and durable power of attorney?
- Is your home protected, perhaps in a trust?
- Are you willing to spend half or even all of your assets on the cost of your elder care?
If your answers are no to any of these questions, it is time to consult with an elder law attorney.
As you age, early planning is the key to enjoy a successful, secure, and less stressful lifestyle. Currently, the look-back period for Medicaid nursing home benefit qualifications is five years. Early planning can protect many of your assets and still secure eligibility for government benefits.
Regardless of your age or wealth, you should have an estate plan. Your will sets forth instructions regarding who will receive your property upon your death, name a guardian(s) for minor children, and protect assets in a special needs trust benefiting any disabled loved ones. An estate plan will tackle tax planning, power of attorney and a health care directive in the event of unforeseen incapacity.
Engaging in Medicaid planning and asset protection can ensure you or your loved one will receive the care they need together with a way afford it. Medicaid planning can also protect a healthy spouse who wishes to remain in your home with the financial resources to do so. Proper planning for Medicaid benefits can protect your assets from Medicaid’s estate recovery program, genuine estate liens.
A well-crafted estate plan is invaluable to you and your beneficiaries. We will guide you through the estate plan process, customizing it to meet your needs, and prepare the legal documents reflecting the laws of your state. Early proactive planning will yield the best results to protect your assets and your well-being. Contact an elder law attorney today to establish or review your existing estate plan.