If you are concerned with the health and financial welfare of an older adult in your life, you need to hire an Elder Law Attorney.
Elder Law is a very specialized area of law that focuses on the legal needs of older adults. It encompasses key issues facing adults as they age, such as long-term health care needs, financial well-being and quality of life, and includes Estate Planning, Asset Protection Planning, Medicaid Planning, Medicaid Applications, Wills and Trusts, Probate, Estate Administration, Advance Directives, Special Needs Planning, and Guardianships.
Asset protection planning is the process of safeguarding your assets in advance of a long-term health care need so that your hard-earned money can pass to your loved ones. Medicaid Planning means protecting assets by securing eligibility for government benefits.
Early planning is key. The current look-back period for Medicaid nursing home benefits is 5 years, 2.5 years for home care. Every adult should have an Estate Plan regardless of age or wealth. In a Will, you set forth your instructions regarding who will receive your property upon your death. You can also name a guardian for minor children, protect assets in a Special Needs Trust for disabled beneficiaries and engage in tax planning. A Power of Attorney, Health Care Proxy and Living Will allow you to plan ahead in the event of incapacity.
By engaging in asset protection and Medicaid Planning, families can ensure their loved one receives the care they need which they otherwise may not be able to afford; a healthy spouse who wishes to reside in the home will have the financial resources to continue to do so; their assets will not be subject to Medicaid’s estate recovery program, particularly real estate liens.
A knowledgeable, reputable Elder Law attorney is worth her weight in gold. Your loved one’s health, well-being and financial security is at stake. Your inheritance is at stake. Not only do you need an Elder Law attorney, you need an experienced one. Look for an Elder Law attorney or firm that ONLY practices Elder Law. The laws are constantly changing and the attorneys need to be dedicated to this area of law 100% of the time, like the attorneys at Cona Elder Law.
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