Yes, and this is commonly done, but it takes careful advance planning. All gift giving must be completed at least five years before you submit your application for Medicaid coverage. You can give direct gifts, but there is another option that may be preferable depending on the circumstances. If you convey assets into an irrevocable Medicaid trust, five year prior to applying for Medicaid, they would not count if and when you apply. However, if there are income-producing assets in the … [Read more...] about Can you give your countable assets to your loved ones before you apply for Medicaid?
There is a $2000 limit on assets in Indiana, but your home does not count. Though there is an equity limit, it is well in excess of the median cost of houses in our area. If a healthy spouse is staying in the home, there is no equity limit at all. The healthy spouse is also allowed to keep half of the shared countable assets up to a limit that is currently $130,380. If a single person is applying for Medicaid to pay for long-term care, almost all their income would go toward the cost of … [Read more...] about How is that possible?
Fortunately, there is a widely embraced solution in the form of Medicaid. This government benefit will pay for the custodial care that nursing homes provide. You are probably aware of the fact that this is a health insurance program that is only available to people with very limited monetary resources. In spite of this, the majority of people in nursing homes are enrolled, and most of them were never financially needy. … [Read more...] about What do you do to preserve your assets?
Our practice is in Indiana, and according to the state, you can expect to pay about $100,000 for a year in a nursing home. The average length of stay is 2 ½ years, and if you are married, you and your spouse may accumulate two sets of nursing home bills. Clearly, these expenses could significantly reduce the inheritances that you always intended to leave to your children. … [Read more...] about How expensive is it?
Without question, this would be the matter of long-term care and the expenses that go along with it. The United States Department of Health and Human Services tells us that seven out of every 10 people that are turning 65 on any given day will require living assistance. Many of these individuals will be able to get the help that they need from family members and friends in their own homes, at least for a while. However, at some point, many seniors need a level of care that can only be … [Read more...] about What is the most important elder law issue?
The term “elder law” confuses some people. It’s not that there are certain attorneys that only accept older folks for a wide range of different legal matters. Elder law attorneys address legal and financial situations that only apply to people that have reach an advanced age. … [Read more...] about Why would elders need a special type of lawyer?
Yes. If you’re part of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender community, a Living Trust offers protection for your estate, as well. It will completely eliminate a living probate, a death probate, and you can minimize or eliminate estate taxes. Further, it provides privacy from prying eyes. … [Read more...] about Is a Living Trust a good idea for a LGBTQ person?
Yes. The default in state law, called “intestacy,” is designed with married couples in mind. If a married couple dies without any estate plan, the survivor will get a good portion of the assets left behind. However, if you’ve not married, or you are in a state that does not recognize domestic partnership or civil union, your survivor would get nothing. Instead, the family of origin of the partner who died would get anything in that partner’s name, including bank accounts, real estate, etc. … [Read more...] about Do unmarried couples have to plan more than married couples do?
Only your Will is a matter of public record. Your Revocable Living Trust and your Powers of Attorney are not public. Therefore, by using a Revocable Living Trust you can maintain the privacy of your wishes. Prying eyes of co-workers and neighbors will not have access to the details of your estate plan. … [Read more...] about Are my estate planning documents a matter of public record?
Maybe. Federal law allows married couples to give each other an unlimited amount of property without gift tax during life or estate tax at death. Federal law does not recognize non-marriage relationships. However, each person gets to give up to his or her tax exclusion during their lifetime to anyone they want. But, any use during lifetime reduces the amount available for transfers at death. In addition, anyone can make a gift to any other person, called the Annual Gift Tax Exclusion, without … [Read more...] about Is there a tax if I give some of my property to my spouse or partner?