The statistics are startling: if you live past age 65, you have a 50% chance of needing nursing home care at some point in your life. Your chances increase to 60% if you live past age 75. The likelihood that you will need such care makes it even more important to plan for your health care needs now! The first step is to examine your long term care options and how to pay for those options, while also leaving a legacy to your family after you pass away.
As more individuals and families face the specter of long term care costs, there is a distinct need for a complete analysis of the options they have to protect assets, how to provide for direction to successors during incapacity, and also to ensure that they can receive the best care possible. Planning in this area involves a review the current and future costs of long term care, a summary of the ways that Medicaid qualification works in the State of Wisconsin, and the most current planning strategies available.
While traditional planning for Medicaid usually involves giving your assets away to children or other relatives, the option of using a Medicaid Asset Protection Trust, or “MAPT,” can be very powerful. A MAPT is a special irrevocable trust created by you during your lifetime for the purpose of holding title to your home and other assets. You can maintain control of those assets by being the Trustee or appointing successor Trustees. The ultimate benefit of the MAPT is that when five years pass, the assets inside it are not countable assets to be spent down if you would like to qualify for Medicaid to pay for long term care costs. A MAPT is not for every family, but our attorneys will counsel with you to discuss that option.
When your loved one enters a nursing home, they will be expected to pay for their stay using their own resources. With the monthly cost approaching $10,000 in some places, this can have a devastating effect on the assets accumulated during a lifetime of diligent saving and investment.
Protecting their assets in a constantly-changing legal environment is extremely challenging. Although planning options at this stage are more limited given recent changes in the law, we are knowledgeable in the legally-accepted techniques that might allow your loved one to pass assets to their heirs and beneficiaries as they intended. Please contact us to find out how we can help.
The costs of assisted living and home health care are increasing over time, and can exhaust one’s life savings very quickly. However, there are benefits available to veterans through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that can help veterans and their families pay for care. Most veterans and their families are unaware of the benefit programs that the VA provides to honorably discharged veterans and their surviving spouses who are over 65 and who have increased care expenses. The benefits are available for those who qualify. If obtained, they can provide a drastic improvement to one’s living and financial situation.
With offices in Madison, the attorneys at Wilson Law Group assist clients with Estate & Business Planning, Probate & Trust Administration, and Elder Law & Medicaid Planning throughout Southern Wisconsin.