ELDER LAW: ASSET PROTECTION PLANNING, MEDICAID & VETERAN’S BENEFITS
As part of our estate planning services, we work with seniors and their adult children to analyze their long-term care needs and financial options. We work with our clients to develop a plan of how to transfer, gift, or organize assets to ensure that there is enough money to pay for long-term care needs and protect assets for the next generation, if possible.
Much of our work includes assisting individuals and couples apply for Medicaid (Title 19) when someone needs expensive long-term care. Medicaid in CT can pay for skilled nursing home care, which currently costs about $15,000/month in our area, and home care, which can cost up to $8000/month for full-time live-in care. One common issue that arises in Medicaid planning is the look-back period, which means the transferor may be penalized from receiving Medicaid if he or she has made a gift during the five-year period before applying for Medicaid. We assist clients analyze the risks and penalties and counsel them on their options.
Even if the look-back is not an issue, there are often spend down requirements, which we assist clients with in order to spend their funds as wisely as possible. We also help clients retain assets for the spouse at home by use of Medicaid annuities, and protect the family home for a child who has lived with the parents and cared for him or her for more than two years.
Our attorneys are also accredited with the PLAN of CT, which is the only entity authorized by the State of Connecticut to operate Pooled Trusts. These are often required if a client’s income exceeds the cap for Medicaid services.
Many of our clients are veterans who served during an active wartime (WWII: 12/7-1941-12/31/1946, Korea: 6/27/1950-1/31/1955, Vietnam 2/28/1961-5/7/1975). The long-term health care needs of a veteran or a surviving spouse of a veteran may entitle that person to a stipend from the VA, known as Aid & Attendance. Attorney Wilson is accredited with the VA to apply for Aid & Attendance benefits.
We firmly believe that the earlier people start planning for long-term care, the more options that will be available to them. Contact us for more information about our Elder Law or Medicaid Planning services.