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Medicaid Planning: Benefits of a Medicaid Asset Protection Trust Versus an Outright Gift

Medicaid Planning: Benefits of a Medicaid Asset Protection Trust Versus an Outright Gift image

Written by: Michele Procino-Wells, Esquire

You’ve decided it is time to consider your options with regard to Medicaid planning. You haven’t met with an attorney yet, but you’ve heard that qualifying for Medicaid coverage for a nursing home stay will require reducing your net worth and assets. In considering this, you decide the easiest way to accomplish this goal is to start gifting your property, assets, and real estate now, then you won’t have to worry about it later, right?

Unfortunately, this solution may seem simple on its face – but there may be a far better option to accomplish...

Caregiver Agreements: Can You Pay Loved Ones for Caring for You?

Caregiver Agreements: Can You Pay Loved Ones for Caring for You? image

Written by: Michele Procino-Wells, Esquire

A Caregiver Agreement, also known as Personal Care Contract or a Personal Service Contract, is a written contract between an elderly person in need of care and a person that can offer them the care they need. Generally, the caregiver is an adult child or other family member, who is under contract to complete specific services for the elderly parent/person in exchange for money or other considerations. The services generally include things like meal preparation, bill paying, laundry, housekeeping, transportation, etc.

These contracts have various benefits for both the elderly person and the caregiver. From...

Estate Planning for Your Stage of Life

Estate Planning for Your Stage of Life image

Much like the dynamics of our lives evolve over time, so too should the contents and structure of our estate plans. It is a mistake to believe you only need an estate plan upon reaching a certain age or milestone like retirement. To the contrary, estate planning is necessary from college to the nursing home, and at many points in between. The following examines various life stages and estate planning suggestions for each:

The Young and the Invest-less: You are never too young to consider an estate plan. For instance, who will handle your student loan debt if you pass...

Facing the Unthinkable: 9 Steps to Take Following the Death of a Spouse

Facing the Unthinkable: 9 Steps to Take Following the Death of a Spouse image

In the wake of the death of a spouse, there are few things you’d rather put off more than handling your household financial portfolio. Especially if your spouse was more involved in the day-to-day management than you, it can quickly become burdensome to locate accounts, pay bills and re-budget on one income. The following set of tips will hopefully be of some help to you as you navigate this difficult journey and provide comfort as you face this overwhelming task.

Tip #1 - Implement a “Decision Free Zone:” The worst time to make a major financial decision is during a...

Avoiding Joint Ownership of Assets: Joint Tenancy Is Not The Best Estate Planning Option

Avoiding Joint Ownership of Assets: Joint Tenancy Is Not The Best Estate Planning Option image

Written by: Michele Procino-Wells, Esq.

Joint ownership of assets with a person’s children or other individuals can lead to disastrous results if not used properly. “Joint tenancy” is the legal term for joint ownership and it applies to any asset that is “titled,” including bank and investment accounts, real estate, cars or boats. When a joint tenancy is created, two (or more) individuals own the asset together and, upon the death of one joint owner, the remaining owners take over that person’s interest. Many mistakenly believe that placing a home or account in joint names with their children is a...