Columbia Elder Law Attorney Assists with Medicaid Planning, Asset Protection & More
Elder law is a broad topic that includes a host of issues that older adults and their family members typically face. McDonald Law Firm focuses on helping older adults in Howard County, and the surrounding Counties deal with estate planning matters while also ensuring that they have the financial resources and legal protections to live out their golden years with a maximum of independence and self-determination. Some of the firm’s primary elder law focuses include the following:
Medicaid Planning – While Medicare doesn’t cover the costs of long-term care, Medicaid does. Medicaid eligibility is based on financial need, and seniors facing the need for long-term care must often spend down a lifetime of accumulated wealth and assets to get the help from Medicaid they need. There are many ways to pay for long-term care without going broke. McDonald Law Firm can explore your options, walk you through a Medicaid spend-down, and assist in the creation of irrevocable trusts, testamentary trusts, special needs trusts and other options to help you keep your assets while qualifying for Medicaid.
Asset Protection – The many asset protection strategies described above, along with others, such as purchasing annuities, pre-paying funeral costs or making home repairs, are excellent means not only to preserve Medicaid eligibility but also to protect the assets you have worked a lifetime to build, and to protect them from attack by creditors or civil money judgments.
Revocable Living Trusts – A revocable living trust offers many advantages to estate planning, such as avoiding probate and keeping the details of your estate confidential. Setting up a revocable living trust can also be a useful tool for asset protection and Medicaid planning, and for guarding against the pressure of family members who sometimes try to take advantage of an elderly relative and exert undue influence over the estate.
Self-Settled Special Needs Trusts – Along with making purchases of non-countable assets, a self-settled special needs trust is an excellent vehicle for maintaining financial resources while still qualifying for Medicaid.
Guardianship – If a person is unable to care for oneself or provide for one’s own day-to-day personal needs, the court may appoint a person to assist the disabled person in performing these functions. All persons are presumed to be capable and competent, so establishing a guardianship requires going to court and proving that the person is incapacitated or unable to provide for one’s own day-to-day personal needs and in need of help. The court can establish a guardianship over the person or the person’s property, or both, depending upon the individual’s needs. When establishing a guardianship, the court will issue an order which sets out the terms and conditions of the appointment, including the scope of the guardian’s authority over a person’s medical needs or finances.
Call McDonald Law Firm in Columbia for a Free Consultation Regarding Your Elder Law Needs
McDonald Law Firm offers a free initial consultation to discuss your elder law needs and let you know how we can help. In Howard County and the surrounding Counties, call 443-741-1088 for assistance.