Tag Archives: living trust
The Living Trust Plus™ is a unique solution to a large problem.
Evan developed this trust as a means of protecting assets while the creator is still living. Including the most expensive creditors in existence: nursing homes. Any form of long-term care is expensive, and long-term care insurance is not easy to obtain for many people, either due to eligibility requirements, pre-existing conditions, or the high cost.
Many attorneys are not aware this trust even exists, and it goes without saying in detail how absent from public knowledge this form of asset protection really is. Our educational video series will shed some light on this trust that is growing in popularity, yet still relatively unknown on a national scale.
Enjoy our Living Trust Plus™ Video Series
Many people approach estate planning attorneys in order to determine how their assets will be divided among survivors after their death.
Unfortunately, a huge number of them skip a step and don’t take the high likelihood of long-term care into consideration. Elder law attorneys see this situation come up time and again, and it is important to educate clients on the options they have available.
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First of all, long-term care is a very likely scenario. People are now living longer than they ever have before. This can be a great thing, but the flip side is that it also means that the period of time in which we cannot fully care for ourselves may be longer, too. More and more people find that they truly need some form of long-term care. In some cases, this can be handled through an in-home healthcare worker rather than in a nursing home, but even that is expensive.
Nursing homes are a common solution when it comes to long-term care, and a good elder law attorney should help you plan for how to make this possibility happen. It’s common for people to think that the government will simply pay for their needs or that a nursing home isn’t any more expensive than renting an apartment. Both ideas are usually untrue. For example, here in Northern Virginia a nursing home can cost around $10,000-$12,000 per month!
So, how does one pay for long-term care? Elder care attorneys typically see four approaches:
1. Private Pay – Any care that is needed, from nursing homes to prescriptions drugs (including co-payments or full costs) are covered out of pocket. That can mean lifetime savings, IRA’s, stocks, and any other assets that you’ve worked for. Elder care services tend to be very expensive, and the costs associated with them are incredibly high. It’s not unusual for assisted-living placements to cost upwards of $8,000 a month. That means that “simple” basics that are required for day-to-day living come out to $96,000 a year.
2. Medicare – Medicare is a health insurance program administered through the government. Many people are surprised to learn that Medicare does not typically cover long-term care. So, even if you qualify for this program, it cannot be used to cover nursing home care or in-home healthcare professionals for more than about 100 days.
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3. Medicaid – Medicaid is the only government benefit intended for long term care, and you must apply and qualify for the benefits. Many people are shocked when their elder law attorney explains that Medicaid may not actually be available to everyone, and if you have much by way of assets (even a modest home or a few thousand dollars in the bank), you may not be able to qualify right away. If you hope to become eligible for Medicaid sometime within the next several years, it’s a good idea to prepare in advance to protect your assets. If it’s too late for that, the Farr Law Firm can still help you protect your hard-earned assets using our proprietary Asset Protection methods and years of knowledge and experience so that you can qualify for Medicaid benefits sooner. The application in itself is also a time consuming and headache-inducing process requiring the documentation of financial minutiae the likes of which many people can’t even imagine. So many of our clients come to us at their wits’ end, having already tried to apply once on their own (or even multiple times) and been swiftly denied.
4. Long-Term Care Insurance – This type of insurance can help to cover or offset the costs associated with long-term care, such as an in-home healthcare worker or nursing home care. Policies can be somewhat confusing and expensive, so it’s highly recommended to work with an impartial elder law attorney when reviewing potential policies to ensure you understand them and are getting what you expect. Sadly, by the time that most people find that they need LTCI, it’s too late–in fact, only about 7% of Americans currently have long-term care insurance policies.
There are many issues to take into consideration when planning for your future, and long-term care is undoubtedly one of the most important, and that with the most far-reaching effects. Working with a Certified Elder Law Attorney means that you will understand the options that are available to you and how they apply according to state and federal law.
To learn more about the complexity of Medicaid law and why it’s been called “an aggravated assault on the English language, resistant to attempts to understand it”, visit this page on our website, then call us at 1-800-399-FARR to find out how we can help.
When older adults think of estate planning, many actually have asset protection in mind. What they want is the peace of mind of knowing that the nest egg they’ve been saving for that proverbial “rainy day” will actually be available for them when that rainy day comes. The rainy day, for most people, is when they or their spouse enters a nursing home. But estate planning and asset protection are two very different fields of law. Estate Planning documents do nothing to achieve asset protection, as Estate planning deals with distribution of assets upon death. If you wind up going broke in a nursing home before your death, your Estate Plan will wind up being a worthless pile of paper.
These days most older adults use the Revocable Living Trust (RLT) as their primary Estate Planning document in order to minimize delays and expenses and avoid the “nightmare of probate.” A Last Will and Testament is designed to put your estate into probate – an expensive and complex process that most people want to avoid at all costs. Although the RLT can achieve this important goal of avoiding probate, a major limitation of the RLT is that it cannot accomplish asset protection. The RLT can’t shield your assets from nursing home expenses. With the average cost of a nursing home room in the DC Metro area at around $9,000 per year, this is an important limitation of the RLT that every older adult needs to understand.
Is there a living trust that actually does protect assets in contemplation of future nursing home expenses? Yes. You can protect your assets legally and effectively by using the Living Trust PlusTM (LTP). As opposed to the RLT which only avoids probate, the LTP is designed to protect your assets from the expenses and complexities of probate PLUS lawsuits PLUS nursing home expenses. The LTP functions very similarly to the RLT and maintains much of the flexibility of the RLT, but in addition to serving as your primary estate planning document, the LTP allows you to actually protect your nest egg from having to be “spent down” to pay for the catastrophic expenses often incurred in connection with nursing home long-term care.
If you’re over the age of 65 and you’ve been holding on to a nest egg for a rainy day, the time to get out the umbrella and protect the nest egg is now, while you’re still relatively healthy and living independently. To find out more, you can sign up yourself and your family to attend a free seminar on the Living Trust PlusTM.
If you are an attorney and are interested in learning how you can offer your clients true asset protection, visit LivingTrustPlus.com and join the dozens of attorneys across the U.S. who have already educated themselves and embraced the LTP!