Blog Archives

The Problem with IRAs – The Solution

            So, what is the solution to Bill’s IRA problem from last week?  He has $1.2 million in IRA money and doesn’t want to risk losing it all to long term care if he gets sick.  But protecting it by moving it to a trust will cause him to pay a lot in income taxes.  […]

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How to Self-Insure for Long Term Care (Part 1)

            It seems that every year we receive more calls from our clients who have long term care insurance but are struggling with the decision about whether to keep it in the face of rising premiums.  The story I wrote about the past two weeks is an example of someone who reduced his coverage with […]

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NY Times Article on VA Aid and Attendance – Just a Little Misleading

Two weeks ago there was a front page New York Times article titled, “Winning Veterans’ Trust and Profiting From It”.  The article profiled a World War II veteran, Henry Schaffer, who was told by a VA accredited attorney that he could qualify for a VA pension that would help him pay the cost of his […]

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Are VA Aid and Attendance Benefits Countable as Income by Medicaid? (Part 1)

New Jersey has several Medicaid programs.  Some have a strict income cap of $2130 per month of gross income as we saw last week with the assisted living program.  In 2013, if you have more income than $2130 per month you won’t be eligible for these programs.  So what counts as income? Social Security and […]

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The Facility Said If I Pay for 2 Years then I’ll Get Medicaid (Part 2)

Last week we were discussing Carol, her mom and a very common disconnect we see when families speak with assisted living facilities.  The facility explained it’s requirement  that residents private pay for a certain period before being considered for one of it’s Medicaid slots.  Carol heard something entirely different, that as long as she meets […]

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Lessons Learned from Hurricane Sandy – From an Elder Law Attorney’s Perspective

The past two weeks have been crazy times here in New Jersey. From a late season hurricane to another autumn snow storm, which now seems to be the new norm. When not in search of gas, my staff and I made some interesting observations from the calls we have received in the aftermath of Hurricane […]

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Role Reversal – When the Child Becomes the Parent

It is something I explain frequently to families when discussing long term care and a conversation I had last week with Dad’s three children who flew in from different parts of the country to meet with me regarding his placement in an assisted living facility. The discussion centered on what Dad wants versus what is […]

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No Luck with Medicaid? VA to the Rescue

Karl had been in an assisted living facility for several years and doing well there.  His family felt fortunate.  Although Karl didn’t have much in the way of assets he did have income from Social Security and a pension, totaling $5000.  He also had a long term care insurance policy that was paying $2500 a […]

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The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men

It was a call I received a number of years ago but one I’ll always remember.  Don called regarding his mother’s need for long term care.  Her health had been slowly declining but she was still living at home.  Her investments were dwindling and she needed increase care.  It was a pretty typical situation we’ve […]

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The Single Most Dangerous Mistake When Applying for VA Benefits (Part 1)

Melissa called to explain her parents’ situation.  Mom was 80 and Dad 85.  For a number of years they had been receiving care at home from a home health aide.  2 years ago, Melissa attended a seminar offered by a financial advisor at a local assisted living facility about a VA program called the Aid […]

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