Jan
20
2014
0

7 Practical Considerations To Take Into Account When Choosing an Assisted Living Facility

Here are 7 Practical Considerations to take into account when you are choosing an assisted living facility, either for yourself or a loved one. We have developed this list  after having first hand experience with assisted living facilities that my father lived in, and after having interacted with our clients regarding these issues over many years.

  1. Is the facility well regarded in the community? Has it been recommended to you by someone who has had a loved one or friend there?
  2. Would the friends and family members of the resident be able to visit at any time, or are there restrictions in this regard?
  3. Is the facility in close proximity to the hospital and medical offices that the resident may need to visit?
  4. How were you treated by the staff and the administrator when you visited the facility? Did you feel welcome and were you comfortable with the experience?
  5. Were all of your questions answered satisfactorily when you visited the facility? Were you left in doubt or were you confused about any of their answers?
  6. Did you feel that you or your loved one would fit into the community for an extended period of time?
  7. Could you imaging yourself or your loved one living there?

* This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see your elder law attorney. At the Law Offices of Michael J. Young, at 1931 San Miguel Dr., Ste. 220, Walnut Creek, CA www.WalnutCreekElderLaw, 925-256-0298, lawyoung1@gmail.com we practice Elder Law and we help Baby Boomers and families through the Elder Care Journey. We help families with long-term care planning, asset-protection plans, comprehensive estate planning, wills, trusts and powers of attorney. We also help Baby Boomers and families get their “Ducks in a Row” in order help them qualify for Medi-Cal and the VA Aid & Attendance Improved Pension benefit.

Jan
09
2013
0

MY DAD IS IN A NURSING HOME AND KEEPS LOSING HIS GLASSES, WALLET AND “TEETH”

This is a common complaint we receive from clients. My own father, while he was in a nursing home during his late 80’s, would constantly complain about losing his dentures, which he called his “teeth”. He would complain that someone kept stealing his teeth. I would say, “Dad, no one wants to steal your teeth!” We asked for help from the nursing home administrator to help monitor where our Dad put his teeth, and this solved the problem.

One of our elderly clients, who is in a nursing home, keeps misplacing her glasses, and cannot remember from one moment to the next where she placed them. Her daughter, who is very exasperated about this, keeps telling her mother to put her glasses in the same place each time she takes them off, but that her mother does not listen. We advised the daughter to talk to the nursing home administrators to help monitor the glasses.  

My father also lost his wallet on one occasion, which we were fortunately able to recover. To remedy the situation of losing his wallet again, my brother took our father’s wallet home with him, and gave our father a new wallet with the items in it our father felt he needed. Those items were his red Safeway card and a one hundred dollar bill. This satisfied our father and eliminated the wallet issue.   

Glasses and dentures are expensive to replace, but we should keep in mind that elderly people who are in nursing homes may be suffering from memory loss, which could be why they are losing things, and we should be patient with our loved ones.

At the Law Offices of Michael J. Young, for many years now, we have helped clients and their families with questions such as these. We also continue to help seniors keep what they have earned. We do this through the preparation of asset protection plans, revocable living trusts, powers of attorney and wills, and assistance with applications for Medi-Cal and the VA Aid and attendance Pension Benefit.

Written Michael J. Young, elder law attorney and probate attorney in Walnut Creek, CA and former in-house counsel for title insurance companies. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com LawYoung1@Gmail.com 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc. Mr. Young advises clients regarding Probates, Probates with Real Estate, Medi-Cal, nursing homes, asset protection, the VA Aid and attendance pension benefit, and long term care planning. Mr. Young is an Elder Law Attorney and Probate Attorney with offices in Walnut Creek, CA. Walnut Creek Elder Law Attorney, Walnut Creek Probate Attorney. Senior Law Attorney.

Nov
02
2012
0

The New More Stringent Medi-Cal Qualification Rules Will Be Here Soon

Congress passed the DRA (Deficit Reduction Act) on February 8, 2006. This act makes qualification for Medi-Cal benefits much more difficult. Congress mandated that the various states adopt the DRA into their rules, and Governor Schwarzenegger signed the DRA into law in California on September 27, 2008. We have been informed that the new DRA rules will become effective in California in the next several months.

One of the most onerous changes for Medi-Cal qualification will involve the penalty period which is created when a gift has been made by the Medi-Cal applicant. There is presently a 30 month look back period for gifts of non-exempt assets. So for example, if a gift was made by the Medi-Cal applicant in the amount of $30,000 within the last 30 months, this amount is divided by the penalty divisor of $7,092, which creates 4.23 months of ineligibility, which is rounded down to 4 months of ineligibility. If this gift was made in November 2012, the applicant would be eligible for Medi-Cal in March 2013, if otherwise qualified. These are the present rules, which we can use for pre-planning for Medi-Cal qualification. 

Under  the new DRA rules, there is a 60 month look back period, with an added, very negative twist. If the applicant gifted the same $30,000 within the last 60 months, 4.23 months of ineligibility would be created, and that number is not rounded down. If this gift was made in November 2012, she would not be eligible for Medi-Cal for 4.23 months AFTER she is admitted to a nursing home, and is otherwise qualified. For a single person to be otherwise qualified, she could have no more than $2,000 of non-qualified assets. The question will be how to be able to pay for the nursing home for the 4.23 months, and this will be extremely difficult for many people.

If you are considering planning for Medi-Cal and asset protection, you should have your estate planning documents updated to include asset protection and public benefits planning language, and you should consider visiting your elder law attorney as soon as you can for pre-planning.  

Written Michael J. Young, elder law attorney and probate attorney in Walnut Creek, CA and former in-house counsel for title insurance companies. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com LawYoung1@Gmail.com 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc. Mr. Young advises clients regarding Probates, Probates with Real Estate, Medi-Cal, nursing homes, asset protection, the VA Aid and attendance pension benefit, and long term care planning. Mr. Young is an Elder Law Attorney and Probate Attorney with offices in Walnut Creek, CA. Walnut Creek Elder Law Attorney, Walnut Creek Probate Attorney

Oct
11
2012
0

Where are Mom’s Papers?

It is very important to know where your loved one’s papers are!

We are always trying to accomplish elder care planning as early

as possible, so that we can get all of our ducks in a

row before memories fade.

 

Last week we helped a family whose elderly mother needed

long term care planning. The father had died almost two years

earlier, and he had been in charge of all legal

and financial matters for the couple. The mother was in a nursing home

and could not remember for sure if she had a trust or any estate planning

documents, or whether her home was in a trust. The family also did not know

if there were any estate planning documents, could not find any, and did

not know about a trust. They wanted us to apply for Medi-Cal for their mother,

and to protect her home from a potential Medi-Cal lien. 

 

I asked the children to keep looking for the legal documents.

I checked with my resources at a title company, and was able

to a get a copy of the last deed of record for the home,

and the deed confirmed that the home was indeed in the mother’s family trust. 

Fortunately, the deed referenced the attorney who prepared it. I called

the attorney, who said he had retired, but thought that he had

copies of his clients’ documents in a storage facility. It took awhile,

but the attorney eventually provided us with copies of the estate

planning documents, including the trust. We were able to amend the

various documents for government benefits and asset protection purposes,

and we proceeded to protect the home from a potential Medi-Cal lien.

 

We also needed to see recent statements of all bank accounts, IRA

accounts, etc., for Medi-Cal qualification. We also needed to see life

insurance policies that the mother owned.

The mother was not sure about any of this,

nor were her children. I asked the children to please look for

these documents, to watch the mail for new statements, and to

familiarize themselves with these matters. The mother confirmed

that she wanted her children to help her.

 

The children were able to find the statements, and

also found a life insurance policy that the mother owned. Fortunately, at least

for Medi-Cal qualification, there was no cash in value that

we would have to deal with to create Medi-Cal

eligibility for the mother.

 

The mother was thankful that her children were helping.

The father had apparently been a very strong willed person,

who for whatever reason, did not choose to involve his

children, let alone his own wife, with any of these important issues.

 

All worked out well in this case, but not without loss of time

and with additional angst and tension that the family

and their mother did not need at this time. 

Written Michael J. Young, elder law attorney and probate attorney in Walnut Creek, CA and former in-house counsel for title insurance companies. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com LawYoung1@Gmail.com 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc. Mr. Young advises clients regarding Probates, Probates with Real Estate, Medi-Cal, nursing homes, asset protection, the VA Aid and attendance pension benefit, and long term care planning. Mr. Young is an Elder Law Attorney and Probate Attorney with offices in Walnut Creek, CA. Walnut Creek Elder Law Attorney, Walnut Creek Probate Attorney

Apr
12
2012
0

2012 CA Medi-Cal Quick Reference Guide

The following is our 2012 CA Medi-Cal Quick Reference Guide. Please refer to our website, http://www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com for a further explanation of Medi-Cal qualification requirements.

2012 CA Medi-Cal Quick Reference Guide

Community Spouse Resource Allowance

$113,640

This is the amount that the community, or (at home) well spouse can retain in liquid assets. This amount does not include exempt assets, such as the home and qualified accounts, such as IRA’s.

Minimum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance

$2,841

This is the minimum amount of income the well spouse can keep. 

 Average Private Pay Rate (Divestment Penalty Divisor)

$7,092

This is the amount the State pays to nursing homes on the Medi-Cal program, minus a share of cost by the applicant. This figure is also used to calculate penalty periods of ineligibility for Medi-Cal.

 Applicant Resource Allowance

$2,000

The applicant can keep this amount in cash, checking, etc.

 Monthly Personal Needs Allowance

$35

The amount of non-exempt liquid assets the ill person is allowed to keep.

Written Michael J. Young, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc. Mr. Young advises clients regarding Medi-Cal, nursing homes, asset protection, the VA Aid and attendance pension benefit, and long term care planning. Mr. Young is a Concord Elder Law Attorney with offices in Walnut Creek, CA.

Sep
16
2011
0

Life Expectancy and VA Aid & Attendance

The VA Aid and Attendance Improved Pension Benefit can help pay for the costs of in home care, assistant living facilities and board and care homes for the older wartime veteran. A single veteran can receive up to $1,644 per month, or $19,736 per year. A widowed Spouse can receive up to $1,056 per month or $12,681 per year. This pension benefit is considered non service connected, meaning that you do not have to be suffering from a wartime injury to obtain the benefit.

This VA program is needs based, and your elder law attorney can help you qualify and apply for this VA benfit. When we plan for Aid & Attendance, we also plan for Medi-Cal qualification at the same time. The Medi-Cal qualification rules regarding gifting and transfer penalties must be taken into account when you plan for Aid & Attendance. If you do not do so, you may become qualified for Aid & Attendance, but disqualified for Medi-Cal. Medi-Cal pays for nursing home costs, which can run $7500 per month or more in Contra Costa County.

As part of the Aid & Attendance Improved Pension Benefit qualification, the VA now considers the veteran’s life expectancy in determining how much a claimant can retain in assets. If the veteran has over $50,000 in assets, not including the home, you may want to pursue transfers of assets and asset protection, and coordinate any such transfers with Medi-Cal transfer regulations. You should not transfer assets without the help of your elder law attorney, who is also certified by the VA.  

This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see an elder law attorney for your particular situation. 

Written Michael J. Young, lawyoung1@gmail.com, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc.

Written by mike in: Alzheimer's Care,Antioch Elder Law Attorney,Antioch Senior Law Attorney,Brentwood Attorney Senior,Brentwood Elder Law Atorney,Brentwood Senior Law Attorney,Concord Elder Law Attorney,Concord Medi-Cal Attorney,Elder Law Attorney Walnut Creek,Estate Planning in California,Hospice Care,Medi-Cal Planning & Qualification,Medi-Cal attorney,Pleasant Hill Elder Law Attorney,Pleasant Hill Senior Law Attorney,Probate & Trust Administration,Veteran's Benefits,aid & attendance benefit,aid and attendance,antioch,ca,elder law attorney Pleasant Hill,nursing home costs,nursing homes,parkinson's disease,senior law,senior law ca,senior law contra costa,senior law walnut creek,walnut creek | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Sep
13
2011
0

Alzheimer’s Planning – Long Term Relationship

We do Alzheimer’s planning in our lawfirm. This type of long term care planning includes, in part, the preparation of estate planning documents. These specialized documents contain required, updated language for asset protection and government benefits planning regarding Medi-Cal and the VA Aid and Attendance Improved Pension Benefit. Part of the planning may also include asset protection of the home and monetary assets.  

However, a big part of Alzheimer’s planning involves working with the family of the loved one who is afflicted with this disease. Alzheimer’s disease can last many years, and our relationship with the families we represent can be very long. As an example, my mother in law, who has Alzheimer’s disease, and who turns 90 next month, has been in a board and care facility for the last 10 years. Other than the disease, she is fairly healthy for a 90 year old.  She does not recognize her three “girls”, but she is being well cared for.  

Currently, there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, but there are treatments and services that will make life more bearable for the Alzheimer’s patient, and his or her family.  We offer  support for our clients and their families, regarding resources for care as part of the  long term care planning. We also encourage our clients and their families to become knowledgeable about the disease. For additional information regarding Alzheimer’s planning, please feel free to contact our office.

This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see an elder law attorney for your particular situation. 

Written Michael J. Young, lawyoung1@gmail.com, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc.

Sep
12
2011
0

Some Tips On Finding a Nursing Home

When finding a nursing home for your loved one is necessary, it is important to decide what is important for him or her. Things such as location, religious orientation and  access to hobbies should be considered. You should request brochures from several facilities you are interested in, and you should tour several of the the facilities. After you have narrowed your choices, plan on visiting the facilities during business hours, and during off hours. The atmosphere and staff may be quite different, and not what you expected during the off hours.

When you visit the facilities, pay attention to your instincts. Do you feel welcome? Did you have to wait to meet a representative? Did the representative seem genuinely interested in your particular situation? When visiting the facility, do not be afraid to ask as many questions as you can think of. If you are shy about asking questions, bring someone with you to encourage the questions, or they can ask the questions for you. Ask if the facility has survey results you can review, and ask if they have been prohibited from accepting new residents by the state at any time.

You will be under great stress at this time, so it is important that you take a deep breath and understand that there are positive things that you can do for your loved one. Also, do not neglect getting your ducks in a row through the help of an elder law attorney, regarding asset protection, estate planning, public benefits planning and long term care planning for your loved one. 

This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see an elder law attorney for your particular situation. 

Written Michael J. Young, lawyoung1@gmail.com, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc.

Jul
19
2011
0

VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefits w/o The Sale of Annuities

The VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit is available for wartime veterans or their surviving spouses. For 2011, a single veteran can receive up to $1,644 per month, and $1,949 if married. The widowed spouse can receive up to $1,056 per month. This benefit is most helpful for payment of in home care, assisted living facility and board and care costs.

For qualification, the VA takes into account, among other things, income and assets. If the applicant’s income and assets are too high, he may not qualify. That is where planning by your elder law attorney, who is certified by the VA, comes in. In addition, when we plan for the VA Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit, we also plan for Medi-Cal benefits at the same time. Medi-Cal pays for nursing home costs after your Medicare days are used up. Nursing homes in our area can cost upwards of $7,500 or more per month. If you plan for VA alone, without taking into account the more stringent Medi-Cal rules at the same time, you may become eligible for VA but ineligible for Medi-Cal.

Beware of being asked to purchase an annuity to qualify for VA. We have been informed by clients and others that there are annuity salesmen out there, who are also usually not certified by the VA, who will ask you to purchase an annuity for VA qualification. I understand that they usually do not tell you about the annuity at first. The purpose for the sale of an annuity, from a legal perspective, is at best unclear, and is generally viewed by the elder law legal community as unnecessary.  Your elder law attorney can best help you with asset protection and planning, within the Medi-Cal and VA regulations, without the sale of annuities. Medi-Cal also has stringent requirements about annuities, which could make the Medi-Cal applicant either ineligible for Medi-Cal, or require him to pay more than necessary in the share of cost, which money goes from the applicant to the nursing home.  We receive calls from individuals, and their families, who are quite angry that they have purchased an annuity for VA qualification, angry that they do not understand what the purpose of the annuity was, and would like to know how to reverse the process. Your elder law attorney, who is certified by the VA, can best help you with long term care planning, asset protection, VA and Medi-Cal qualification, and estate planning at the same time, legitimately and within the regulations.

Written Michael J. Young, lawyoung1@gmail.com, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc.

This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see an elder law attorney for professional advice.

Written Michael J. Young, lawyoung1@gmail.com, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc.

This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see an elder law attorney, who is certified by the VA, for professional advice.

Jul
06
2011
0

My Grandchildren are Too Cute!

When I was younger and people started to talk about their grandchildren, I would practically plug my ears. Now that we have two grandchildren, ages 4 and 2, I am the one who can’t stop talking about them.

So, since I can’t stop myself, I must tell you a story about my granddaughter, Edie. She will be 3 this coming September. Grandma and I were watching both grandchildren a few weekends ago, and Edie was on my lap. I was opening a package that came in the mail, and when I opened the package, bubble wrap came out. My granddaughter said to me, “BaPa, cut a small piece for me.” So I cut a small piece for her and said, “Like this?” She said, “Yes, not pop it! Pop it! Pop It!” I started to pop the little bubbles for her, and she couldn’t stop laughing. It made me laugh that she was laughting, and I was also laughing at how this little girl could give me orders which I would immediately comply with.

I felt like my life was made at that moment. My granddaughter and I were both happy and laughing. I was also astonished that this little girl at age 2  1/2 would know about these things and could tell me what to do like that! I just can’t imagine that other grandchildren are that smart. (ha ha)

I hope you didn’t plug your ears. Thank you, BaPa, Mike Young.

Written Michael J. Young, lawyoung1@gmail.com, elder law attorney in Walnut Creek, CA. www.WalnutCreekElderLaw.com mike@WalnutCreekElderLaw.com. 1931 San Miguel Dr., Suite 220, Walnut Creek, CA 94596. 925-256-0298. Mr. Young serves Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, including the cities of Walnut Creek, Alamo, Danville, Concord, Brentwood, Pleasant Hill, Antioch, Clayton, etc.

This information is not to be taken as legal advice, and you are encouraged to see an elder law attorney for professional advice.

Powered by WordPress | Theme: Aeros 2.0 by TheBuckmaker.com