Estate Planning and Elder Law Blog

Using Pooled Income Trusts in Home Care Medicaid Planning

Question:  My parents are in their eighties.  Both are beginning to need assistance with their daily activities.  Even so, neither one is ready to move to assisted living or into a nursing facility.  Mom and Dad own their home and each receive social security and a pension.  Other than that, they do not have much…

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Annuities

Question: I am 50 years old and my financial advisor has suggested a deferred annuity.  What is a deferred annuity?  What are the tax aspects?  What are the Medicaid implications? Answer: Purchasing a tax-deferred annuity can be an excellent idea in certain situations.  If needed, an annuity can provide you with a steady stream of…

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Revocable Trusts

Question:  My friend just created a Revocable Living Trust and I am not sure if I should be considering creating one as well.  I am in my sixties and have an estate worth approximately $800,000.00.  My current Last Will and Testament disinherits my estranged son.  Is a Revocable Trust something I should consider? Answer:  A…

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Examples of Trust Commissions

Examples of Trusts Commissions Executor’s Commissions The decedent passed away with the following assets titled in her sole name: House valued at $350,000 Bank Accounts valued at $50,000 Stock Accounts valued at $100,000 Total Assets: $500,000 The Executor’s commissions would be calculated as follows: 5% of the first $100,000                     ($100,000 x .05)                                  $5,000 4% of…

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Recent Court Decision Suggests that Banks Cannot Evict Surviving Spouses from Homes Subject to a Reverse Mortgage

With people living longer, many turn to a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage, more commonly referred to as a reverse mortgage, for additional income. Reverse mortgages allow seniors to access the equity in their homes and convert same into an income stream. Before the property is sold, or upon the death of the borrower, the amount…

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Completing IRA Benficiary Designation Forms

Q: I have several IRA accounts; can you give me advice on completing the beneficiary designation forms? A: Some of the most costly estate planning mistakes we hear about involve IRA’s. For every IRA you should complete a beneficiary designation form. Keep a copy of the form(s) among your important papers. Do not rely on…

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Estate Recovery and Homestead

Question:  My mother, who is widowed, is receiving Community Based Medicaid services.  She currently owns a home in her own name; she has been hesitant to transfer it out of her name.  I am concerned about Medicaid having a claim against the house after her death, am I right to be concerned? Answer:  Yes.  Individuals…

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Dividing the Personal Property of an Estate

Q: My mother recently passed away. I am the nominated executor of her estate.  Her Will directs that all of her personal property is to be shared equally among her children. Can you give me any suggestions about how to divide the personal property? A: While it is relatively simple to equally divide cash and…

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Community Medicaid

The Community Based (Homecare) Medicaid program can assist families in paying for the cost of care in the home and will also pay for certain adult day care programs so long as certain eligibility requirements are met.  First, the applicant must meet the necessary income and assets levels.  An individual who is applying for homecare…

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Power of Attorney

Question: My aunt has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. She is in the early stages, can she sign a power of attorney? Who determines if she has capacity? Answer: This is an excellent question and one that comes up often in the practice of Elder Law. The fact that your aunt has a diagnosis of…

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