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Elder Law Archives

Optimizing pension benefits for veterans and spouses

The right to independence is a core American value, something many have committed their lives to defending in service to the country. Living life independently on our own terms ranks equally high on that value scale. Sadly, aging has a way of slowly eroding our abilities to perform the basic activities of daily living.

Understanding government's 5-year look-back rule

Ensuring appropriate medical care for a loved one in old age can be a challenge. Health insurance only covers so much. Estate planning may provide the means to ensure maintenance of needed care through Medicaid, the combined state and federal government program for those in financial need, without exposing hard-earned assets to possible government recovery. But it requires careful, strategic planning that might need to be started years ahead of time

Planning is even more important if you have no family

A woman who celebrated turning 100 had this to say when asked how she felt about the achievement. "It's nothing to strive for." Not everyone feels that way, of course, but many do. And one of the certainties of the world today is that many of us are living longer. What is less certain is that our faculties and our ability to care for ourselves will remain unchanged as we age.

Actions you can take now if parent guardianship is anticipated

Let's presume you are a millennial only child and your parents are in their 60s. Maybe you are not feeling concerned about their ability to take care of themselves right now, but you recognize that the day is bound to come when they won't have the capacity to make decisions. Someone, most likely you, will have to take over that function. What should you do?

What does it mean to obtain legal guardianship of a parent?

Many middle-age New York City residents must deal with the logistical challenges and emotional stress that comes with figuring out how to care for elderly parents. In addition to possible health problems and physical ailments, as they age, many people grow increasingly forgetful and confused. In cases where a parent's declining cognitive functioning endangers his or her safety, health and financial wellbeing; it's important to explore options with regard to legal guardianship.

When a parent's declining mental capacity becomes an issue

Many adult children worry about the health and safety of their aging parents. This is especially true in cases where a parent's mental capacity begins to deteriorate. When a parent exhibits symptoms that are readily associated with dementia or Alzheimer's, it's important to take steps to ensure for not only a parent's physical safety, but also his or her financial security.

The importance of planning for long-term care needs

As an individual ages and moves through different stages in life, there are always concerns that must be addressed and questions answered. For individuals nearing retirement, chief concerns often relate to ensuring for one's own financial security as well as that of a spouse. As one lives out his or her retirement years, concerns may shift to include health matters as well as living arrangements.

Real estate deed transfers: the importance of doing them right

There are certain things a person may be rather concerned about in their elderly years. One is what will ultimately happen with the real estate that they have. There are many different types of real estate a person could have: a family home, a condo, a vacation home, an investment property, etc.

Did you know? Medicare sometimes does pay for nursing home care

The cost of living in a skilled nursing care facility is astronomical. As we mentioned in an earlier post, New Yorkers currently pay an average of about $136,000 a year for a private room in a nursing home. Other care options do cost less but they're still not cheap: $49,200, on average, to live in a New York assisted living facility; $52,000 a year for a home health aide.

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