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Powers of Attorney, Health Care Powers, and Advance Medical hDirectives

No Comments Estate Planning

Power of Attorney For most people, the durable power of attorney is the most important estate planning instrument available — even more useful than a will. A power of attorney allows a person you appoint — your "attorney-in-fact" — to act in your place for financial purposes when and if you ever become incapacitated.

Lessons to be Learned from Anna Nicole

No Comments Estate Planning

Anna Nicole Smith seemed to go from one estate planning mess to another. First, she was the wife of billionaire J. Howard Marshall. For many years, she was involved in litigation over his estate because J. Howard never included her in his Will. But, even after experiencing first-hand the emotional, financial, and time costs of […]

10 Tips for Helping Families with Special Needs

No Comments Special Needs

This month’s newsletter examines the unique planning requirements of families with children, grandchildren or other family members (such as parents) with special needs. There are many misconceptions in this area that result in costly mistakes in planning for special needs beneficiaries. It is, therefore, incumbent upon us – our clients’ advisors – to ensure that […]

The Medicaid Penalty

No Comments Elder Law

Under Mississippi and Federal law, transfers of assets by an Medicaid applicant within 60 months prior to a Medicaid application will result in a penalty of ineligibility.   Congress does not want you to move into a nursing home on Monday, give all your money to your children (or whomever) on Tuesday, and qualify for Medicaid […]

Drafting Errors Can Be Corrected – Sometimes

No Comments Elder Law

A recent case demonstrates the potential for reformation of a Trust where a drafting error otherwise made the trust assets available for purposes of qualifying for Medicaid.  The New York surrogate’s court finds clear proof of mistake in the drafting of an irrevocable inter vivos trust and allows reformation to reflect the grantor’s intent that […]

The Continuing Need for Life Insurance

No Comments News & Updates

In a previous article, we examined the various educational savings vehicles available to clients, including 529 plans, UGMA/UTMAs, Coverdell Education IRAs and life insurance. Using life insurance as an education savings vehicle prompted several questions about other uses for life insurance. Therefore, this as a follow up, this article examines some of these other common […]

Medicare Nursing Home Coverage is Limited

No Comments Elder Law

Medicare is the federal government’s principal health care insurance program for people 65 years of age and over. In addition, the program covers people of any age who are permanently disabled or who have end-stage renal disease (people with kidney ailments that require dialysis or a kidney transplant). The Medicare program insures 39 million Americans […]

The Myth of the $10,000 Transfer

No Comments News & Updates

One of the major rules of Medicaid eligibility is the penalty for transferring assets. Congress does not want you to move into a nursing home on Monday, give all your money to your children (or whomever) on Tuesday, and qualify for Medicaid on Wednesday. So it has imposed a penalty on people who transfer assets […]

Godfather of Soul may have Disinherited Son

No Comments News & Updates

James Brown, the "Godfather of Soul" apparently last updated his estate plan in prior to giving birth to his now five year old son, James Brown, Jr.  The will failed to provide for the child or the child’s mother, Brown’s long-term companion, CNN reports.   A dispute over Brown’s estate is almost a given under these […]

Spousal Impoverishment and Increasing the Minimum Monthly Needs Allowance

No Comments Elder Law

Qualification Basics In order to be eligible for Medicaid benefits a nursing home resident may have no more than $4,000 in "countable" assets. The spouse of a nursing home resident — called the ‘community spouse’ — is limited to assets up to $99,540 (in 2006) in "countable" assets.  This figure changes each year to reflect […]

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