Long Term Care and Estate Planning

It is a given that all of us are going to grow old. After the age of 65, about 75 percent of us are going to require some form of long term care. So put away the list of excuses (It won’t happen to me. The Medicaid will pay if I need LTC. I will always make my own decisions. And so many more…), because there’s a good chance it is going to happen to you.
In point of fact, Medicaid will pay for long term care, but in order to participate in Medicaid, federal law requires states to cover certain groups of individuals. Low income families, qualified pregnant women and children and individuals receiving Supplemental Security Income, as there may be options for other groups. In short, that means if your assets or income are too high, you may have to divest yourself of all assets in order to receive benefits.
So unless you fall into a low income category, you probably need to rethink how you are going to approach the long term care you might need. You should also plan for the unexpected — what if you require long term care but can no longer make your own decisions?
In fact, decisions regarding home or assets should be made five years prior to needing long term care. Wait … WHAT? How the heck can you plan that far ahead when you don’t know the date it’ll happen… use a crystal ball?
In a way, yes. An attorney experienced in estate planning can help you peer into the future and prepare well in advance of your need for long term care. The attorney might suggest steps such as purchasing long term care insurance, allocation of funds to transfer titles or deeds quickly, creating a Will or Trust, creating Powers of Attorney (both medical and financial) and many more steps.
Please feel free to call Poulos Law Firm … we will help you peer into the crystal ball and plan for your future.
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