Elder Law

Elder Law

Basic Estate Planning

  • Review and update your existing Will, or make one if you haven’t done so. Do you want the government deciding for you? If you don’t make a Will, it will.
  • Make Financial and Medical Power of Attorneys (POA’s). Again, do you want the government deciding for you? If you are married, make reciprocal POA with your spouse to take responsibility before you are incapable of doing so.
  • Get Long Term Care Insurance. It now costs about $7,500/month ($90,000/ year) in the Delaware Valley for nursing home care. If you prefer, you can buy paid-up policies, rather than paying every year.  Or, if you qualify, you can buy a term policy for as little as several hundred dollars per year.

Long Term Care Insurance

    • BETTER SOME THAN NONE.
    • Typical Policy Specifications:
      • Facility Daily Benefit is the maximum amount your policy will pay.
      • Benefit Period is the length of time your policy will pay benefits.
      • Inflation protection grows your daily benefit each year, usually by 3-5%.
      • Elimination Period is the number of LTC days that are a deductible.
      • Spousal and Married Discounts.
      • Respite Care for anyone taking care of you.
      • Typical Policy Options:
        • Return of Premium upon death.
        • Restoration of Benefits after you recover for 6 consecutive months.
        • Indemnity Benefits which can give you cash per month for any use or just for home and community care.
        • Call 215-266-7872 for more information.

      Medicare vs. Medicaid

          • Medicare is a federally-funded healthcare insurance program generally only having age requirements.
          • Medicaid is an income-tested program which provides hospital, physician, and nursing home services for those persons who, regardless of age, meet state medical and  financial eligibility requirements.

      Medicare

          • Part A - Hospital Insurance
            • Coverage for inpatient hospital care prescribed by a physician and approved by Medicare, limited care in a skilled nursing facility, home health care, and outpatient hospice care.

            • Coverage is subject to deductibles and co-pays.

          • Part B - Physician Services
            • Coverage for physician surgical and medical services.

            • Covered outpatient services include emergency care, lab tests, hospital x-rays, medical supplies, and some blood transfusions.

            • Medicare pays only 50% of any approved charges for mental illness therapeutic treatment.

            • Non-covered services include most routine physicals, foot care, hearing aid exams, eyeglass exams, immunizations, cosmetic surgery, dental care, and experimental medical procedures.

            • Part C - Medicare + Choice
                • Coordinated Care Plans such as HMO’s, BC/BS Personal Choice Plans, Religious Fraternal Benefit Plans.

                • Medical Service Accounts to pay high deductibles.

                • Fee-for-service Plans such as traditional BC/BS.

        Medicaid Eligibility

              • Who is eligible?
                • You must be a U.S. citizen/resident alien; resident of the state to which you apply; 65 years old, disabled, or blind; care must be deemed medically necessary; AND you have countable resources not exceeding $2,400.00.

                • Countable resources may not include your principle residence.  They do not include household furnishings, personal jewelry, a car, burial plot, marker, and a pre-paid funeral, and some life insurance.

                • Your monthly income may not exceed certain set amounts.

        Medicare Supplemental (Medi-Gap) Insurance

              • Pays gaps in the original Medicare plan:

                • 6 months to apply  after 65th birthday.

                • Guaranteed Renewable.

                • On Medicaid; then you don’t need it.

                • If you lose your Medicaid eligibility, you may resume your old Medigap policy without filing a new application.

                • Ten Standard Plans.

                • Basic Benefits: Various Part A hospital co-insurance payments, 20% of Medicare approved expenses after year deductible, and three pints of blood (annually).

                • Additional Benefits: How much can you afford?

        Planning For the Future 

              • Annuities for the life of your spouse.
              • Realty Life Estates.
              • Trusts.
              • Wills.
              • Durable Powers of Attorney.
              • Guardianships. 

        Do You Need an Attorney? 

        We may be able to help if:

              • You need a Will.
              • You need a Power of Attorney to take care of your affairs.
              • You need to plan for your long term care and/or need long term care insurance.
              • You need to plan for the future care of a loved one such as your spouse or a child.
              • You have questions and/or need Medicare, Medicaid, or Medi-Gap Insurance.

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        Do you need a free speaker on this subject for your organization ? Call to arrange.

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