There are certain legal and financial eventualities that can enter the picture when you reach an advanced age. Younger people simply do not face these challenges, so there is an area of the law that is strictly devoted to the needs of elders.
Without question, this would be the matter of long-term care and the costs that go along with it. You may be surprised to learn that the majority of seniors will someday need living assistance, with 35% of them residing in nursing homes.These facilities are very expensive, and Medicare will not help with the costs. If you do not take the right legal steps to preserve your legacy, everything that you intended to leave to your loved ones may be absorbed by a nursing home.
Medicaid is a jointly administered federal/state government health insurance program that does pay for the custodial care that nursing homes provide. Since it is only available to people with limited resources, you may have to divest yourself of assets to gain eligibility.You could essentially give your loved ones their inheritances in advance. However, this is easier said and done, because the gift giving must be completed at least five years before the application is submitted.There are also complicated rules with regard to the property rights of a healthy spouse, and assets that are simply not counted. A layperson would have a hard time navigating these waters alone, so elder law attorneys are often called upon to provide guidance.
Sadly, elder abuse is a problem that is very widespread. Far too many seniors are victims of physical and emotional abuse in assisted living facilities, and some of them are abused in their own homes.There is also the matter of elder financial abuse. It is difficult for experts to place an accurate estimate on the amount of the losses, because a small percentage of cases are reported.The people who are being abused will often keep quiet because family members are the perpetrators, and they don’t want to get them into trouble. In addition to this, some elders who are being abused need the care that is being provided by the abusive individuals.Elder financial abuse can come in a variety of different forms. There is direct theft that is premeditated, and there are also crimes of opportunity. Telemarketing and door-to-door scams rear their ugly heads, along with instances of fraud and identity theft.Fortunately, there are legal steps that can be taken to protect yourself from instances of elder abuse.
We Are Here to Help!
If you would like to discuss any elder law matter with one of our attorneys, our doors are wide open. We know that it can be a bit disconcerting to open up about highly personal matters with someone who you have just met, but you can rest assured that we know how to put our clients at ease from the start.
Communication is key, so we will get to know you, gain an understanding of your concerns, and make the appropriate recommendations. Ultimately, if you decide to move forward, we can put a plan in place that prepares you for the eventualities of aging.
You can schedule an appointment right now if you give us a call at 913-262-2000. If you would prefer to send us a message, simply take a moment to fill out our contact form and we will get back in touch with you promptly.