ECAM

The Eldercare Answerman

I am WECTU's Eldercare Answerman. My blog discusses many of the primary issues that we have to address when assisting our loved ones as they age. Please use the adjacent search box to find an answer to an eldercare problem. Also, check out my Podcasts, my Frequently Asked Questions section and my Elder Care Search Wizard.

 

If you have a specific request regarding a topic that I have not addressed, please contact us with your request.

A question that is frequently asked is whether a veteran is entitled to any long term care benefits. The answer is that a veteran who served during wartime in World War II, Korea or Vietnam is entitled to a benefit known as Aid and Attendance. The veteran need only have served one day during wartime and did not have to...

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Many folks develop a very well thought out estate plan and beautifully crafted companion documents. In many cases, they believe that the overall plan is complete. This couldn't be further from the truth. It is critical to review your beneficiary designations so that you can be certain that the assets will flow to the heirs you desire and in the...

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As your parents begin to age, you may be required to spend a good deal of your time overseeing and managing their care regimen. You may even want your loved one to come live with you so that their care can be more easily managed. One question that arises on a frequent basis is whether you should be compensated for...

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One of the most difficult problems that I had to deal with regarding my mother's health and long term care situation involved convincing her to agree to hire a home health care aide. My mother had the foresight to purchase long term care insurance. This policy provided for home healthcare, adult day care and assisted living benefits. She was concerned...

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A continuing care retirement community is a long term care facility where a loved one can live and transition through the entire care continuum. Most of these facilities require an assisted living level of care so that a senior citizen or the couple entered the facility and have the ability to live independently. As one or both of the...

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A day doesn't go by that a senior citizen isn't impacted by a scam perpetuated by an unscrupulous person. These scams range from financial advisors who misappropriate the funds they are managing to swindlers who rip off senior citizens by offering fake prizes and sweepstakes in order to lure the unsuspecting person to part with their funds in hopes of...

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For most people the thought of putting their affairs in order is an event that occurs when something unexpected happens. The thought of writing a will or implementing a power of attorney may feel like you have one foot in the grave or you're giving up control of your life and your financial resources. By procrastinating you may risk losing...

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Your estate and elder care planning will become much more complicated if you are dealing with a fractious family where you are estranged from one or more family members. You should also be concerned if you have an illegitimate child with whom you have little or no contact. In both of these situations you must be certain to implement well...

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Okay, you've just joined the world of the caregiver. It is a rough job that encompasses literally 18 million people who care for a relative over the age of 65. At the same time, you're caring for your family and working at least 20 hours a week at a job that puts a lot of stress and pressure on your...

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Folks are always asking whether a hand written will is a valid document. This is known as a holographic will. In most cases, a person writes in their own hand a document dealing with disposition of their assets at the time of their death. The admissibility of such a will can vary from state to state.For example, in the state...

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Hospice Care

Jan 01, 17

One of the most misunderstood areas of care is known as hospice care. Hospice care is available to people who have been documented by the family or treating physician to be terminally ill and in their last six months of life. Medicare benefits under Part A are available to the terminally ill patient and their family. Its purpose is to...

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Let's say that your mom has been in the hospital for ten days. They have told you that she may need a regimen of rehabilitation or she may have to go to some type of a long term care facility. She will be discharged from the hospital within the next two to four days. What should you expect the hospital...

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People always ask whether someone needs to have a will. My answer is that it is always best to have a well thought out will drafted by professional implemented prior to one’s death. A will only covers assets that are titled in an individual’s name alone. If assets are held jointly, then the assets will pass to the survivor at...

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You go to sleep one night and wake up in the morning only to find that your mother or your aunt has become ill and is in the hospital. You find out that she had a stroke and that a lengthy stay in a long term care facility is likely. You are advised that your family member being discharged from...

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Many estate planners recommend that a family use a life estate deed to pass their residence, vacation home, or family farm to one's children. For estate planning purposes a life estate deed with powers is used to avoid the probate process. This deed allows the person who lives in the property or utilizes the property to have total control of...

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As you age and begin developing your estate plan, one major consideration should be the purchase of long term care insurance. It is important to remember that one of the largest costs that will impact you and your family will be the cost of long term care which encompasses home health care, assisted living and nursing home care. The cost...

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Questions always arise about when it is time for a person with memory loss to sign a legal document such as a will, power of attorney or healthcare directive. The answer is that it just depends on the situation. The facts in the case at hand must be thoroughly reviewed. If you are dealing with a feuding or fractious family,...

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It's never too late to attempt to protect your families' hard earned assets even after someone enters a nursing home. One tool that works extremely well is known as a Medicaid Annuity. This vehicle is used in many states where it is not a consideration to qualify for medical assistance when your loved one is permanently placed in a nursing...

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A long term care stay can actually provide a family with a large income tax benefit. All funds paid to a third party who is providing health related long term care in the home can be fully tax deductible. A stay in a nursing home is also totally income tax deductible since one's room and board is incidental to the...

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When you begin to craft your will it is important to determine whether want your assets to pass to the children of the named heirs should they die prematurely. There is a concept that is used when drafting a will or trust which is known as a per stirpes distribution. This means that your heir has predeceased you and that...

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Pet Trusts

Jan 01, 17

Here's a question that maybe you should contemplate. What if you become incapacitated or you die before your pet does? Your pet can live for a very long period of time. For example a bird can live anywhere from 50 to 70 years or more, while a dog or cat can easily live 10 to 25 years. Many people don't...

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I have been asked over the years what is the most important document for one to implement when doing their estate planning? My question to the person asking the question is what would happen if with no warning your spouse or parent had a stroke and became completely incapacitated? What if you are living on distributions from your spouse's retirement...

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In elder care, you will frequently find that you are dealing with a concept known as a blended family. This means that either or the spouses may have entered into a second or third marriage. Frequently prior to taking such a big step in their lives, they will have entered into a prenuptial agreement. This document will normally cover what...

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Many times as a family member begins to age in their home, they are in need of the help of a paid caregiver. The cost to a senior citizen who must pay a caregiver in order to remain in their residence can be daunting. Their home is their biggest asset, yet it is illiquid. There is a way to tap...

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For many years, there has been a controversy as to whether a will or a revocable living trust is the best estate planning tool. Everyone needs a will. Even if you have a revocable living trust you should implement what is known as a pour over will. From an estate tax perspective, wills and living trusts are essentially identical. Both...

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I am WECTU's Eldercare Answerman. My search tool will automatically guide you to information and answers that will assist you with resolving your specific eldercare issues.