A General Overview of Planning for the Costs of Long-Term Health Care while Protecting Your Assets The Law Offices of Geraldine E. Champion Nationally Recognized Experts in Nursing Home Counseling, Medi-Cal Planning and Elder Law
FIRST, THE BAD NEWS...
The State Can Take Your Assets
"The State can take your home, your business, or almost any other asset without proper planning."
-The San Francisco Examiner
Long-Term Care is Expensive
"The average annual cost of care in a nursing facility is $60,000."
-U.S. News & World Journal
The Risk of Needing Long-Term Care is Great
"More than half the woman and almost one-third of the men turning 65 this year will spend time in a nursing home before they die."
- Wall Street Journal
Life Savings Can Be Wiped Out
According to some estimates nationwide, the average couple's life savings can be wiped out after only two years of nursing home care. Most reports indicate the majority of people over age 65 are at risk of losing their life savings to skyrocketing long-term health care costs due to inadequate insurance protection and a Medicare system offering limited support.
AND NOW THE GOOD NEWS!
Federal and state laws provide planning options for both single and married individuals. These laws allow you to protect your assets and still qualify for Medi-Cal to pay your nursing home costs.
Almost Anyone Can Qualify for Medi-Cal
In most cases, our law offices can save your family's entire estate from the potentially devastating expense of long-term care costs.
The Law Offices of Geraldine E. Champion, along with other professionals, will work with you to design a comprehensive plan tailored to meet your specific needs including necessary estate planning documents.
In addition, we seek to improve your quality of life. The Law Offices of Geraldine E. Champion will apply federal and state laws which allow you to keep more monthly income and retain more of your hard-earned assets.
AND MORE GOOD NEWS!
Your family home can be protected from costly Medi-Cal liens and claims.
A History of Success
Successfully advised hundreds of clients throughout the State of California regarding Long-Term Care Medi-Cal benefits in the nursing home.
Successfully qualified individuals wanting to remain in their own homes for Medi-Cal benefits providing for In-Home Supportive Services.
Successfully qualified individuals with estates of $5,000 to estates of more than $1,000,000 for comprehensive Medi-Cal benefits.
Uniquely Qualified to Serve Your Family
Presenter to the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, the State Bar of California Continuing Education, Southern California Tax and Estate Planning Forum, and Continuing Legal Education Credits for the San Luis Obispo County Bar and Santa Barbara County Bar.
Fellow, National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys.
Former Chair, Elder Law Subcommittee, Practice Development, American Bar Association and San Luis Obispo Probate Subcommittee on Medi-Cal Petitions, Liaison to the Court.
CNN Television, Interviewed as Guest Expert on Elder Law.
"Media Advocate of the Year," award from the Area Agency on Aging for "Senior Focus," a live weekly radio call-in program.
Contributing editor for the California Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP)
Which Assets are "Exempt" in 2010?
Many assets and certain income allowances are considered "exempt" when determining your Medi-Cal eligibility. Some of the most common exemptions include:
Family Home (any value) – Exempt for eligibility purposes, but may require proper planning to prevent a Medi-Cal claim or lien.
Life Insurance – Term: unlimited. Whole life: $1,500 maximum cash value.
$2,000 for an "Institutionalized" (ill) Spouse
$109,560 Allowance for a "Community" (well) Spouse
What Income is "Exempt" in 2008?
Both Federal and California State law allow the "Community" Spouse to claim a Minimum Monthly Maintenance of $2,610, without a court order.
The "Institutionalized" Spouse is allowed $35 per month for personal needs. Any additional income is allocated to the Medi-Cal share of cost or to supplement the "Community" Spouse's income up to the $2,610 allowance, without a court order.
What Are Your Legal Rights?
YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO petition the court for an increased Community Spouse Resource Allowance.
YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO petition the court for an increased Community Spouse Income Allowance.
YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO request a Fair Hearing before an administrative law judge.
YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO purchase select investment products to qualify for Medi-Cal.
YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO reposition assets to qualify for Medi-Cal.
Call our law offices today and schedule an appointment to learn your legal rights.
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Geraldine E. Champion, Attorney at Law The Law Offices of Geraldine E. Champion 182 South 10th Street Grover Beach, CA 93433 Tel: (805) 473-4747
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This information is designed to provide a general overview with regard to the subject matter covered and is not state specific. The authors, publisher and host are not providing legal, accounting, or specific advice to your situation. This information does not establish an attorney-client relationship. All information is California specific. Facts and circumstances effect advice. Consult your own attorney.