Elder Law: What Is It and Why Do I Do It?
You may regularly hear about Elder Law and think you need it. And you would probably be right. But you may wonder what it is. Elder Law is many things, but here is some of what it is:
• Protecting your assets and income from nursing home and other age-related costs;
• Navigating the maze of rules and laws that govern how nursing home care is paid, including Medicaid, so you don’t have to navigate it alone;
• Protecting your friends and family from abuse or substandard care by caregivers;
• Helping you or your family understand and qualify for Medicaid;
• Working with you and your financial advisor, CPA, and insurer to coordinate an asset and income structure that will keep you and your family comfortable for your lifetime;
• Helping you stay at home and avoid the nursing home if staying home is important to you;
• Many more….
You can see that Elder Law is about more than nursing homes and applying for Medicaid. It is also about more than protecting your assets. While Elder Law often includes these things, it also includes much more, such as the quality of your golden years.
Elder Law Is More Than Applying For Medicaid.
Many people think Elder Law is simply applying for Medicaid. And Elder Law often includes applying for Medicaid. We’re here to help when Medicaid is needed and to apply for the Medicaid benefits to which our clients are entitled. But Elder Law also involves more than the application. It involves understanding Medicaid and other programs to which senior citizens and the elderly are entitled so that, long before Medicaid benefits are needed, we can prepare our clients to maximize those benefits and get what they are entitled to receive.
Elder Law is More Than Estate Planning.
Estate Planning is traditionally aimed at helping you pass assets to the beneficiaries that matter to you. If those beneficiaries need help managing the assets or if you want to protect the assets for them, trusts are often involved. Elder Law is that and more. Elder Law prepares us for the future we are likely to face before we pass. But it’s a future we sometimes don’t want to consider: in-home and nursing home care when we aren’t able to care for ourselves. Elder Law considers the rest of your life and how you want to pass your assets after your death.
Elder Law Considers Our Future Needs.
You want to be comfortable with the amount of assets and income you saved. Also, you want to be comfortable that your assets will pass to the beneficiaries who matter to you. But there are other important questions to consider: are you certain you will have enough assets and income to cover your needs before you pass? And are you certain there will be assets left over to pass to those who matter to you? In other words, are you sure your assets and income won’t be lost to pay for nursing home care as you age? If you go to a nursing home without proper planning, your hope to pass your assets to loved ones may be misplaced. Nursing home costs quickly consume assets and income, leaving nothing.
While we may think we won’t go to a nursing home, nursing home care for us is almost inevitable. Studies show that at least 70% of us are likely to require nursing home care. And with costs nearing $8,000 per month and higher in some areas, few can afford it. Elder Law guides you toward an asset and income structure that will help make sure you remain comfortable, well taken care of, and in the place you want to live.
Elder Law Helps Us Live Where We Want.
You want to be comfortable where you live as you age. Perhaps, that is your home. You want the comfort of your own home as you age. Or maybe assisted living appeals to you. You know it can be costly, but you realize the benefits of assisted living can’t be overstated. Either way, you don’t want to be forced into a nursing home because you lack the funds to get care in your home or to cover assisted living costs. Through Elder Law planning, we work to make that happen if it’s possible.
Why Do I Do Elder Law?
I want my client’s wishes to be carried out. If they want to pass assets to their family, I want to help them make sure they preserve those assets to pass. Also, I want them to get the benefits to which they are entitled. Unfortunately, many programs designed to benefit the elderly and their family aren’t user friendly. And the customer service aspect of some of the programs has been lost. Rather than helping people understand the programs and the available benefits, the culture in these programs seems aimed at blocking people from the benefits they should receive. That’s not acceptable. And it means people need an advocate, someone who will listen to them, care for them, and help them. They deserve to receive what they’re entitled to receive without being mistreated, ignored, or abused. And their family is entitled to be heard, too. So I do Elder Law to make sure voices are heard, to make sure people get the benefits to which they are entitled, and to make sure their wishes are carried out. I enjoy what I do. Contact us to see how I can help you or your family.