Category Archives: Living Trust Attorney

Helping Aging Parents Make the Move

For seniors, relocating to a retirement community or assisted living residence can open the door to increased stress and high emotions. This step often means giving up some part of their independence and certainly means leaving familiar surroundings behind. How can adult children help their parents make the transition? Like an experienced guide on a road you’ve never traveled before, an elder law attorney can help families navigate the process.

When it’s no longer possible for aging parents to live independently, a whole host of issues need to be settled with their best interests in mind. Your parents’ home often represents a large portion of their assets. Other financial considerations may include hiring a living trust attorney or finalizing arrangements for parents’ ongoing budgetary needs through the remainder of their lives. There will be decisions to make based on health needs. Aging parents may be moving to a different town or state and or downsizing to a smaller residence.

Steps to Take to Make Your Parents’ Move Easier

Every situation is different, but there are some solid, practical steps that can make the journey easier for the entire family.

Working with an elder law attorney. An attorney who specializes in elder law can aid your parents in making a wide variety of decisions to better meet their needs for the remainder of their lives. Decisions can be made about choosing beneficiaries, making end-of life arrangements, and protecting assets so that the elderly family member can comfortably live on their budget. Other decisions might involve appointing family members to make health and financial decisions.

Deciding to sell or keeping property. In many cases, seniors decide to sell the property so that the money can be used to help with their living costs. In other cases, they might wish to keep the property in the family. An elder law attorney can help families make such estate-planning decisions.

Downsizing possessions. A good way to help elders downsize is to start as early as possible, taking time to go room by room and making sure to defer to their decisions. For many families, this step will need a great deal of patience and time.

Choosing a new home. Your parents’ new home may be chosen for a number of reasons, including health considerations. Involve elders in making a list of criteria that covers what they want and need. Then help them identify and evaluate available options. It’s important that they’re comfortable with the new living situation, which may mean multiple visits as part of the decision-making process.

Easing the stress of moving day. Moving can be stressful for anyone, but it’s especially difficult for people who have lived in their home for decades. The number-one priority should be to make the process as easy and considerate as possible for your aging parents. Make sure as much of the packing and organizing is handled in advance. Hire movers or enlist willing family members to help. Make certain someone spends time with elderly loved ones so that they have a support system if they need one.

It’s important that you realize that this change in lifestyle can be stressful for everyone. While there are many decisions to be made, an elder law attorney can help with the legal and financial aspects so that family members can concentrate on providing the more important emotional support that seniors deserve and need.

Is it time for your parents to downsize into a smaller home or move into a senior living community? Contact us today for more information about how we can help.

Planning for Long-Distance Caregiving

As the Baby Boomer generation enters their twilight years, a large percentage of their children find themselves sandwiched between responsibilities for their own family and their aging parents. For caregivers who live far from their loved one, this dynamic proves particularly difficult. It’s estimated that there are between 5 and 7 million long-distance caregivers (LDCs) in the United States. An elder law attorney can advise both the elderly parent and the LDC about best practices for long-distance care and estate planning.

Often adult children don’t realize that their aging parent needs care or support until some kind of health crisis occurs. Long distances can compound this situation. When elderly parents live more than an hour away, problems may not be noticed immediately. Advance planning is essential. Ideally, the entire family should discuss responsibilities and make decisions in advance, including who will take the lead in care giving and where responsibilities lie.

In this planning stage, family members can determine the best options for care, including moving the parent closer to the caregiver or enlisting the help of in-home care services in the aging parent’s location. Family members should also make decisions about individual LDC roles. Siblings may decide to split responsibilities. One sibling may be better with hiring and monitoring caregivers, while another may choose to coordinate legal planning.

Here are some things to keep in mind as aging parents and long-distance caregivers plan ahead:

  • Respecting the Aging Parent’s Wishes. Many aging parents may need help but want to remain as independent as possible, for as long as possible. It’s imperative that their wishes are taken into consideration with regard to where and how they live.
  • Contacting an Elder Attorney. An elder attorney should be consulted to help with estate planning and to guide the family in legal decisions. It’s important that issues such as the power of attorney for health directives be decided while the parent is able to do so. An elder law attorney can also make sure that the elderly person’s property and financial means are protected, while still providing for their daily needs.
  • Organizing Affairs. It’s important to know where all of the pertinent paperwork is located.
  • Learning About Resources in the Area. Long-distance caregivers should do research to learn about the resources in their elderly relative’s area to find the best in-home care and other services that will benefit them.

Becoming the caregiver for an elderly parent is challenging. In cases where the caregiver lives a significant distance from the parent, the situation can be even more of a challenge. An elder law attorney is an essential element in a long-distance caregiving plan. Contact us today for more information about how we can help you put together a long-distance caregiving plan for your loved one.

 

10 Questions for an Elder Law Attorney

Elder law refers to the legal services specific to senior citizens. Here are some important questions you should ask when seeking elder law legal advice.

1. Why Do I Need an Elder Law Attorney?

An elder law attorney can provide you with the correct information to navigate complex legal issues such as taxes, social security, Medicare, Medicaid, Property and Trust laws, and more.

2. Are You Certified?

Elder law attorneys are certified through the National Elder Law Foundation (NELF). It is important to make sure your attorney has this certification to be sure they are an expert in elder law.

3. What Is Your Specialty?

Most attorneys have a specialty area. Your attorney may be an estate planning lawyer, or may have specialty in abuse, age discrimination, disability, asset protection, medical or mental health, retirement, or other areas where they excel above others.

4. What Experience Do You Have?

You want to be sure your attorney has a track record of handling the type of case you face. Ask them how long they’ve been in the field and what kinds of cases they’ve handled.

5. Are You Up-to-Date on Massachusetts Law?

Every attorney in the state needs to be current on the latest changes in Massachusetts’ laws, which constantly change and shift.

6. What Professional Associations Do You Have?

Many attorneys will hold memberships in professional associations. These should help your lawyer’s area of expertise. One such membership is NAELA, or the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.

7. Are You Involved with Elder Law Concerns?

Beyond simply dealing with legal cases, a good attorney is active in elder law advocacy and education. Such involvement shows passion and dedication as well as knowledge.

8. Are You a Super Lawyer?

“Super Lawyer” is a title granted by your attorney’s peers on a state-by-state basis every year. Very few lawyers gain this honor, and those that do are the best of the best.

9. Are You a Medicaid and Medicare Expert?

The most common elder law issues involve these programs, and your lawyer should always be well-versed in their inner workings.

10. What Resources Are Available?

Your attorney should be able to provide you with a number of strong elder law resources such as Medicare, Medicaid, estate and trust law, ailments like Alzheimer’s and Crohn’s and more, so you can educate yourself.

For more information or advice regarding elder care law, give us a call today.

Discover What a Massachusetts Living Trust Attorney Can Do For You

MA Living Trust AttorneyElder law is complicated and encompasses a lot of issues that most people are not familiar with. Your attorney is the best source of information on all aspects of elder law. Your attorney can also provide you with a wide range of benefits, from tangible to intangible.

Estate planning and elder law issues can be confusing for many. You aren’t sure what your options are, or which one is right for you and your family. Your estate planning attorney has helped thousands of clients and has experience in local, state and federal law. They can help you make the best choices for your situation, to not only protect your assets but ensure that your family is provided for.

Your elder law attorney can also assist you with paperwork and filing documents with the local government and courts. If there are any issues or disputes that arise, your attorney can help you straighten things out. If you must go to court to get a resolution, your attorney will be with you every step of the way to help you.

When you hire an elder law attorney to assist you with planning your own estate, or handling the affairs of a family member or loved one, you will get access to years of experience and knowledge. Your attorney will answer your questions and help you make the right decisions. You can rest knowing that your loved ones are taken care of, and they will have fewer worries.

Making the Most Out of Your Elder Years

For more information about retirement and Massachusetts Elder Law, call the Law offices of Adam Tobin, today!You’ve worked hard all of your life, and you want to enjoy your retirement years. You don’t want to worry about your affairs and finances while you are supposed to be having fun. Seek the services of an elder law attorney to help you plan and prepare so you can have a good time with family and friends. If you are an individual with elder parents, use this advice to help them prepare for their retirement with the help of an elder lawyer.

Planning for Your Life

Seek the services of a living trust attorney to help you set up a trust to take care of your finances now. All your financial obligations will be handled, and you will have money to enjoy and spend without worrying about tomorrow. Be sure to factor in your living expenses, and expenses you will have after you pass, such as funeral expenses and other obligations.

Wills and Trusts

Seek the services of an estate planning attorney, such as the Law offices of Adam Tobin, to set up a living will and trusts to manage your funds while you are alive. This will also allow you to take care of your loved ones after you pass away. You might also wish to seek the services of a probate lawyer to head off any problems that may arise.

Long-term Care Planning and the Responsibilities of Being the Family Caregiver

Contact Adam Tobin Law Offices for more information about Massachusetts Elder Law.It’s a subject that most of us don’t want to think about – end-of-life care for our loved ones. However, they depend upon us to make the correct decisions so they don’t worry about neglect or abuse in their final days. Before your loved one gets to the point that they need round-the-clock care, you should seek the services of a Massachusetts elder law attorney or estate planning attorney to help you with the important decisions and get them in writing.

Long-Term Planning

Some of the things that you need to plan for are housing, finances and funeral expenses. Ensure that you get your loved one’s wishes in writing, and have a trust set up to deal with these expenses. An elder lawyer can help you with the necessary documents. Your elder attorney can also advise you of any issues you need to be aware of, and trust laws in your state. You’ll also want to set up a living will so your loved one can be assured that their estate will be handled properly.

Responsibilites of the Family Caregiver

When your loved one enters the twilight years, you will be expected to carry out a few responsibilities as the family caregiver. You’ll be in charge of handling the finances – seek a living trust attorney to assist you with this. You’ll also be in charge of checking on your loved one and making sure they receive the proper care.

How To Prepare Estate Planning After Having a Baby

Estate planning after having children.

After having a baby, your estate planning strategy completely changes because you need to account for some important decisions that will affect your child, both now and as he transitions into adulthood. It is important to add your child to your will right away and make several other decisions related to your child in the coming years.

First, specify in your will how your assets will be divided between your heirs, including the new baby. An estate planning lawyer can walk you through the process to ensure your wishes get carried out.

Second, get a Massachusetts estate planning attorney to add a clause to your will that specifies who will care for your child if you and the child’s other parent are both unable to. Including this in your will may seem silly if you’re healthy, but it never hurts to have it there in case something happens to you.

Third, consider setting up a living trust. This is a way to protect your assets from being tied up when you die, while still allowing you full control while you are living. A living trust attorney can walk you through the specifics of this process.

Fourth, start transferring your assets to your child if you have a large estate. Tax laws allow you to make tax-free gifts of up to $13,000 per year for each child, which adds up significantly over the child’s lifetime.

Of course, there are several other things you will need to consider as well, especially if you have a large estate or if your existing will is a complicated one. Get in touch with your Massachusetts estate planning lawyer before your baby arrives so you can discuss your plans and be ready to put them in place.

Ten Reasons to Consult an Estate Planning Attorney

Helping your elderly parents face the financial and health-related challenges that come with growing older can put quite a strain on your other responsibilities. Enlisting the help of the right professionals leaves you with more time to spend with your family. Since there are complex state and federal regulations regarding wills and other paperwork necessary for settling an estate, it is best to consult an experienced estate planning attorney. There are ten specific benefits to working with an elder lawyer.

1. Ensure the last will and testament of your parent or relative is legally binding and properly designated.

2. Designate a power of attorney contract to ensure the right person is responsible for making medical and financial decisions if the person becomes incapacitated.

3. Create a living will. Living wills help your elderly relatives make their wishes clear and save you a lot of stress when the time comes for difficult decisions.

4. Avoid mistakes. A practicing estate planning lawyer can craft a strong will that covers all the bases, while most packages designed to help you do it yourself lack coverage of crucial areas.

5. Handle any business or investment transfers smoothly and without delays.

6. Address complex situations where blended or extended families are involved. Planning the estate is much more complicated if your elderly relatives have had more than one marriage.

7. Minimize the taxes heirs will need to pay by choosing the right type of trust.

8. Update and change any existing wills and estate paperwork. Changing laws and family structures make old agreements insufficient very quickly.

9. Take care of disabled family members for their rest of their life. A good probate lawyer can help craft a plan that ensures that the people in your family with special needs never go without support.

10. Make the process easier. Planning an estate is stressful for both the elderly and their helpers, but an experienced professional helps.

Tips For Making Your Estate Planning a Smooth Process

estate-planning-paperworkIf you feel that the time has come for you, or an elderly loved one, to truly finalize your estate planning, the time is now to contact an elder law attorney or an estate planning lawyer. When you go for your consultation with a Massachusetts living trust attorney, it is important to have in mind an idea of how you would like your estate planning to go. Below are some useful tips and guidelines that will help you as you work with your Massachusetts elder lawyer.

1. Consider including a simultaneous death clause, which will pass your estate onto your children in the event that your spouse dies shortly after you do.

2. In order to disinherit a child, you must spell that out in your will.

3. Remember to keep beneficiaries on your pension, life insurance and 401K current.

4. Be sure to designate an executor as well as a back up executor.

5. Store your personal and private information in one designated location in the home, preferably a fire proof safety deposit box. This box should include important personal and financial records, as well as computer passwords and PIN numbers.

6. Understand the impact of estate taxes and discuss with your estate planning attorney some options for reducing or avoiding estate taxes.

Remember that upon your death, your family and loved ones will be going through an emotionally taxing as well as stressful time, and you will help them considerably by having your affairs in order. It is important to recognize that with age comes certain responsibilities, and that the sooner you have your estate and other affairs in order, the better off you and your loved ones will be. Contact an elder attorney with any questions you might have regarding Massachussetts and even federal law, and set up an appointment to begin the process of finalizing your affairs. You will feel at ease, and your family will be glad to know that an already taxing time will be much less stressful because of your willingness to work ahead.

Massachusetts Elder Law Planning for Long-term Care

longtermcare-elder-lawElder law attorneys in Massachusetts can help you solve issues regarding long-term care arrangements. If you are not proactive and speak to a Massachusetts elder lawyer early on, long-term care costs can deplete the estate of you or your loved ones. Although insurance may help assuage some of the financial burden, an estate planning attorney can present different options to you.

Long –Term Care Insurance Policies

As part of your estate planning, you may decide to take out an insurance policy in the case you or a loved one requires extensive medical care in a long-term facility. Policies available cover nursing home care and assisted living costs. Your elder lawyer can include policy terms in your living will along with give you advice on how to select the best policy. Since you may not need long-term insurance for years, choose an established insurance provider with a long track record of honoring claims. A Massachusetts elder attorney is likely to point out the importance of an inflation rider that allows the benefit amount to increase each year. If you need long-term care in 10 or 20 years, you want to make sure the coverage you have is sufficient.

Getting Your Wishes Granted

An elder attorney ensures that you or your loved one gets the care you want and deserve. In your living will, you could instruct your loved ones on the type of facility you want to be placed. A list of facilities and nursing care providers can also be listed in a long-term care plan. Your attorney also helps you find the funds from your estate to pay for long-term care if required. All monies are reviewed during your consultation to make the smartest financial decisions. Monies used for long-term care can come from medical insurance, reverse mortgages, long-term care insurance, veteran’s benefits, income and savings.

Documents You Need

Telling your children or grandchildren your wishes for long-term care is not enough. A MA elder care lawyer assures all documentation is filed and legally-binding. Your attorney can draw up your last will and testament, living will and power of attorney documents. In your documents, you could also designate a personal care coordinator. This person is in charge of making the decisions when you are medically incapacitated due to old age or disease.

Speak to a MA elder lawyer early on to avoid financial disaster. Nursing homes and assisted living facilities cost hundreds of thousands of dollars if used for long-term care. Avoid losing your entire estate by planning for this possibility with an elder law attorney.