Our law firm is devoted to estate planning and elder law matters, and we have an office in Essex Junction, Vermont. It is truly a fantastic place to call home, and the area provides residents with the best of all possible worlds.
Perhaps the best thing about the city is the fact that it is a close-knit community, and locals genuinely care about one another. There are resources that people can tap into when they need assistance with all different types of challenges, and one of them applies to our work as elder law attorneys. Before we explain it, we should set the stage with some very relevant information.
Nursing Home Costs
The most pressing elder law issue of our time is the matter of long-term care costs. Studies have shown that the majority of senior citizens will someday need help with their activities of daily living.
Some people can get the assistance that they need in their own homes. Others will ultimately move into assisted living communities, and those that need a more significant level of care will reside in nursing homes during their twilight years.
If you have paid into the program sufficiently throughout your working life, you will become eligible for Medicare coverage when you reach the age of 65. We should point out the fact that this is the age threshold at the time of this writing late in 2019, but it is subject to change.
This health insurance program for senior citizens provides a foundation, but there are out-of-pocket costs to contend with, and there is one huge gap in the coverage.
The Medicare program will provide assistance for people that are recovering from illnesses or injuries for a limited period of time. However, it will not pay for an extended stay in a nursing home or assisted living facility. This type of care is considered to be custodial care, which is not covered under the Medicare umbrella.
Though Medicare will not pay for long-term care, Medicaid is another government health insurance program that will provide financial assistance if you can qualify. It takes careful planning to obtain eligibility, because there are strict asset and income limits.
The limit on countable assets is just $2000, and that’s the bad news. The good news is that there are a number of different assets that are not considered to be countable for Medicaid purposes.
You can maintain possession of your home, but there is a $585,000 equity limit in 2019. One motor vehicle is not countable, and you can keep your personal belongings, your wedding and engagement rings, and up to $1500 in whole life insurance.
There are steps that you can take to position your assets in an effort to be able to obtain Medicaid eligibility. This is where our firm can enter the picture to provide valuable assistance.
Alzheimer’s Disease Local Resource
Now that you understand a bit about nursing home costs and the Medicaid solution, we can address the subject of this post. Many elders that reside full-time in nursing homes have contracted Alzheimer’s disease. You may be surprised to hear that one out of every ten people that are at least 65 years of age are Alzheimer’s sufferers. This figure balloons up to 40 percent for folks that are 85 and older.
Clearly, many people that have Alzheimer’s disease need the type of care that only a nursing home that handles memory care can provide. We work with many families that are faced with this type of situation. It is a good idea to educate yourself in advance so that you can recognize warning signs and do everything possible to mitigate the impact.
The Alzheimer’s Association is a treasure trove of information on the subject. If you were to explore their site thoroughly, you would find that there is a Vermont chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association that serves our area. There are local resources, education classes, and special events that you may want to explore. To see everything that they have to offer, click this link: Alzheimer’s Association Vermont Chapter.
Attend an Upcoming Seminar!
We are holding a number of elder law and estate planning seminars over the coming weeks, and we are looking forward to these opportunities to spend some time with our neighbors. The sessions are highly informative, but we present the material in a manner that is very easy to understand.
You can walk away with a lot of very valuable information if you attend one of these seminars, and there are no risks involved, because they are offered on a complimentary basis. To see the schedule and obtain registration information, visit our seminar page.