An elder law attorney is a lawyer who focuses on a particular area of the law. There are certain eventualities that seniors face, and elder law attorneys help people who are concerned about the legal ramifications.
Since there are a number of important legal matters that may confront you when you reach an advanced age, you should certainly discuss the future with an elder law attorney so you can be appropriately prepared.
There are certain questions that you may want to ask at the consultation, and we will look at some of them in this blog post.
Will Medicare cover all of my health care needs when I become eligible?
You earn Medicare eligibility through the accumulation of retirement credits. When you pay FICA taxes, part of what you pay goes toward Medicare. It is possible to earn as many as four credits in a year, and in 2015, you get one credit for every $1220 of earnings.
When you have accumulated at least 40 credits, you will qualify for Medicare when you reach the age of 65.
While Medicare will provide you with basic health insurance, it does not cover everything in totality. You are responsible for certain out-of-pocket costs for things that are covered.
Plus, Medicare does not pay for custodial care. This is the type of care you would receive in a nursing home or assisted living community.
Since long-term care is very expensive, this gap is quite significant.
What is the solution?
Many people look toward Medi-Cal, because this program does pay for long-term care. However, it is a need-based program, and the limit on countable assets is just $2000 for an individual.
To qualify, people often give assets to their loved ones before they apply for coverage. You do have to act in advance if you want to go this route, because the gift giving must be completed at least 30 months before you submit your application if you want to obtain timely coverage.
Should I be concerned about elder financial abuse?
The answer to this question is yes. Elder financial abuse is a very big problem in the United States today. Millions of dollars are lost annually, and sadly, in many cases, the abuser is someone that is close to the victim.
If you understand the facts and take the right legal steps, you may be able to limit your exposure to elder financial abuse. We have looked at three basic questions in this blog post. If you would like obtain comprehensive answers to your elder law questions, our firm can help.
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If you are interested in the possibility of working with our firm after learning these facts, please select our “Workshops” tab to RSVP for a free estate planning workshop. At that workshop you will be offered a free one-hour consultation with an attorney: www.collinslawgroup.com/seminars/
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