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New Rules Will Make It Harder to Qualify for Long-Term Care Help From the VA

The Veteran’s Administration (VA) offers a pension benefit to low-income veterans (or their spouses) who are in nursing homes or who need help at home with everyday tasks like dressing or bathing.  The pension, called Aid and Attendance, is currently underused, but impending regulations will soon make it available to even fewer veterans. The new … Read moreNew Rules Will Make It Harder to Qualify for Long-Term Care Help From the VA

Do You Pay Capital Gains Taxes on Property You Inherit?

Knowing the “cost basis” of your property is important for tax purposes, but proving cost basis can be difficult. Cost basis adjusts at death, so it is a good idea to appraise property when a joint owner dies. Cost basis is the monetary value of an item for tax purposes. When determining whether a capital gains … Read moreDo You Pay Capital Gains Taxes on Property You Inherit?

Court Approves Use of Short-Term Annuities for Medicaid Planning

Immediate annuities are among the tools elder law attorneys use to help married nursing home residents qualify for Medicaid coverage while protecting the standard of living of the healthy spouse and to help preserve assets for the families of unmarried or widowed nursing home residents. Immediate annuities can help Medicaid applicants in two basic ways: First, many spouses … Read moreCourt Approves Use of Short-Term Annuities for Medicaid Planning

Social Security Benefits to Remain Flat in 2016, While Millions Could Get Stuck With Huge Medicare Increases

For only the third time in 40 years, the nation’s elderly and disabled Social Security recipients will not receive an increase in benefit payments next year.  However, as a direct result of this about 30 percent of Medicare are facing a staggering 52 percent increase in their Part B premiums and all beneficiaries will see … Read moreSocial Security Benefits to Remain Flat in 2016, While Millions Could Get Stuck With Huge Medicare Increases

Will Medicare or the VA Pay for My Mother-in-Law’s Home Health Care?

Q: My mother-in-law is 85 and suffered a stroke for which she now receives medication. The stroke left her occasionally incontinent, with some confusion and weakness. We are looking for an in-home care person and wondered whether Medicare would compensate some or all of the cost. Also, her husband was a veteran who served at … Read moreWill Medicare or the VA Pay for My Mother-in-Law’s Home Health Care?

Can the Nursing Home Stop Billing Medicare for My Mother’s Treatment?

Q: My mother spent four days in the hospital and Medicare approved 100 days of skilled nursing facility care after her stay. After 48 days, the nursing home cut off her therapy and ended her Medicare benefits, without notifying us either in writing or by phone. She was not discharged from the nursing home, however, … Read moreCan the Nursing Home Stop Billing Medicare for My Mother’s Treatment?

Is an Agent Under a Power of Attorney Entitled to Compensation?

Q: My wife and I have are agents under my 86-year-old mother’s durable power of attorney. We are her primary caregivers because she is not able to cook her own meals, clean her own home, do her own laundry, do grocery shopping, drive herself to doctor’s appointments, allocate her own medications, or pay her own … Read moreIs an Agent Under a Power of Attorney Entitled to Compensation?