Elder law issues can be complex. One wrong word or move can mean the difference between a good result and a terrible one. But even knowing that, you still might not think that you or a loved one really needs the services and assistance of an elder law attorney.
State Laws Rule Elder Law Matters
State laws are very specific about what can and cannot be contained in a will, trust, progress medical directive, or financial power of lawyer. They control who is able to and cannot provide as an individual representative, trustee, healthcare surrogate, or lawyer in truth. They dictate who are able to and can’t be a see to a will, trust, or a medical or financial power of lawyer. These laws and regulations also know what formalities must be followed if you are signing a will, trust, or medical or financial power of attorney. And although Medicaid is a federally authorized program, areas are tasked with administering Medicaid at their local levels. The laws and regulations and rules regulating Medicaid may differ greatly from condition to state.
Working with a professional Elder Law attorney Brandon can avoid simple yet very costly faults if you or your beloved aren’t intimately acquainted with the precise laws in your state.
That old Latin saying, “caveat emptor” or “buyer beware” certainly applies to elder law matters if you’re thinking of handling things yourself with a little store-bought assistance. You might think that you’ll save a few dollars by filling out that Medicaid application yourself or using forms found on the internet, but your family could be in for a rude awakening when they learn that you won’t qualify. The same holds true for estate planning documents. If you attempt to create them yourself or with the help of some generic, one-size-fits-all software, part or all of your will, trust, or medical or financial power of attorney might not be legally valid or won’t work as anticipated. Again, remember those state laws.
Your and your family could end up spending thousands of dollars more after the fact to fix unnecessary mistakes than what a qualified elder law attorney would have cost you in the first place.
It’s Not Just About Dying
Elder law isn’t necessarily the same thing as estate law. Your estate is what you leave to your loved ones when you perish. But imagine if you should become emotionally or physically not capable of caring for yourself as well as your own private business before then? Numerous options can be found to modify to these situations as economically and effectively as is possible from powers of a lawyer to living trusts. A revocable living trust can be created for another person to dominate the management of your resources if a spot with time comes when you’re able to no longer achieve this yourself.
Sorting Out Complex Family and Financial Situations
Take a look at your life and your assets to see if you fit into one or more of the following categories. Check off as many as apply.
- You’re in a second (or later) marriage
- You own one or more businesses
- You own real estate in more than one state
- You have a disabled family member
- You have minor children
- You have problem children
- You don’t have any children
- You want to leave some or all of your estate to charity
- You have substantial assets in 401(k)s and/or IRAs
- You were recently divorced
- You’ve recently lost a spouse or other family member
- You have an incapacitated spouse in need of long-term care
- You have a taxable estate for federal and/or state estate tax purposes
If one or more of these situations apply to you, you’ll need the counseling and advice of an experienced elder law attorney to assist you with your elder law needs. Otherwise, your state or the Internal Revenue Service might receive the largest chunk of your assets.