While nobody wants to think about death or disability, planning ahead is one of the most important steps you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones. Anyone dealing with a spouse or aging parent with long-term medical needs knows how difficult it can be to obtain quality health care for that person while watching one’s life savings become depleted. It is heartbreaking and stress-inducing at a time when the focus should be on providing comfort and care for the elderly individual.
A Medicaid and Long Term Care Planning Attorney can help individuals and couples qualify for Medicaid or the VA Aid and Attendance Pension Benefit often with the goal of preserving assets. Nearly half of all women and a quarter of all men find themselves in a long-term care facility in their lifetime. Not only does this often mean a great loss of personal autonomy, but also a large financial burden. According to Genworth’s 2020 Cost of Care Survey, long term care in Tri Cities, Eastern Washington often exceeds $100,000 per year. Don’t delay, speak with a Tri Cities Medicaid Lawyer today.
Keep Your Long Term Care Options Open Through Preserving Your Estate
Long-term care is In-Home Care, Adult Family Home Assisted Living, or Skilled Nursing (the highest level of care). If you pre-plan you can be sure to keep all of your options open but if you spend down your entire estate you will be pigeon-holed into one or two facilities. Preserving some of your estate will provide you with the choice of where you reside, whether that is in your own home with in home care, or a residence facility of your choice. Preserving part of your estate will improve the quality of your life as you grow older. Remember, Medicaid does not pay for everything; you will need your own finances if you want things like a second pair of glasses or a private room.
While many law firms practice in estate planning. Long-term care planning is an entirely different way to preserve the estate for the person needing long term care. Often this type of planning benefits the well spouse so that he/she does not go broke in the process of caring for their loved one.
Long Term Care can be paid for in several ways:
- Privately: With costs ranging from $4,000 to $10,000 per month, per person, depending on the level of care.
- VA Aid and Attendance Benefit: This benefit ranges from $1,176 to $2,903 per month available when the recipient fits the criteria and guidelines and is set forth by the VA.
- Medicaid: Pays for long-term care but only after the recipient has met the guidelines for the benefit. This can leave the recipient or estate broke and with car less choices.
- Families often go broke in less than a few years when faced with paying for long-term care. Medicaid may pay for costs of the long-term care. However, there are strict income and asset guidelines that must be met.
- By hiring an elder law attorney, there are certain strategies your attorney may employ in order to preserve as must of the estate as possible.
Before you spend your assets that you spent a lifetime acquiring to pay for the long-term care, make an appointment to speak with an accredited elder law attorney to weigh all of your options. There are strategies that can be implemented so that you do not go broke.
What is Medicaid and Medicaid Planning in Tri Cities?
The cost of long-term care has risen significantly in the past decade and will continue to rise. The average cost of an assisted living facility in Washington State is $5,000.00/month, and a nursing home runs about $10,000.00/month.
One way to pay for this cost is Medicaid. Medicaid is a social health program for low-income individuals. Since the cost of care continues to rise, many people find themselves depleting resources to pay for care. The problem is they will soon become impoverished With the right planning (including estate planning, wills and trusts, and special needs planning, etc.), our office can assist seniors in obtaining this benefit while preserving their assets.
There are two types of planning opportunities when qualifying for Medicaid: Pre-Planning and Crisis Planning.
Medicaid has a five year look back period, so it is important that you take the steps necessary to preserve your assets, even if you are perfectly healthy, as soon as possible. If you are thinking about preparing for the possibility of needing long-term care in the future, you should contact an attorney to advise you and guide you through the process. Not consulting an attorney exposes you to misinformation that could lead you to do something that could disqualify you from Medicaid altogether.
Our office can assist you in reviewing your assets and income and creating a long-term care plan that utilizes legal and ethical strategies to preserve your assets and get you qualified for Medicaid.
If you find yourself or your aging parent in need of long-term care immediately, than your case would be considered a ‘crisis case’. This means there are certain strategies that cannot be used because the benefit will be needed sooner than the five-year lookback period. It is important to consult an attorney immediately because there are still many strategies that can be implemented to qualify you for Medicaid without going broke. Even if you don’t have the five years to pre-plan, we can still help preserve some of your assets and qualify you for Medicaid.
Our office can evaluate your situation and make the correct recommendations to get you qualified sooner rather than later and guide you step by step through the whole process.
Do I Really Need an Attorney For Long-Term Planning in Washington State?
Long term care planning is an extremely complex process that can be overwhelming. You want a team backing you up and helping with all of the strategies and planning. Our long-term care planning attorneys will ensure that the correct planning is put in place so that you are qualified as soon as possible for the benefit programs. Typically time is of the essence and if you have an attorney you can expedite the process. Every month that there is a delay in qualifying for Medicaid or Aid and Attendance is potentially a lot of money out of your pocket. Medicaid rules can change every three months and the VA has made the Aid and Attendance process so complex that many applications are denied, and often denied without cause.
- Plan for your parent’s future.
- Get qualified for Medicaid.
- Learn how to pay for long term care without going broke.
- Find a facility that is safe and comfortable.
- Find a facility that you want to be in, not one that you are forced into because of lack of choice.
- Your loved one needs to be moved into a facility and you are afraid they are going to lose everything.
If you have an attorney who is familiar and skilled in Medicaid and VA Benefits you can avoid unnecessary delays and potentially save many thousands of dollars. Working with a Tri Cities Medicaid lawyer is the best way to ensure the correct planning is put in place to qualify you as soon as possible.
Why Should You Hire a Tri Cities Medicaid Lawyer at Evergreen Elder Law?
In a culture that often brushes seniors aside, we have a team of attorneys, paralegals, and administrative assistants to help. Our team is devoted entirely to the complexities of long-term care planning and keeping up with the frequent changes in rules.
Our office takes a holistic and hands-on approach to planning. We help seniors and their families with all of their needs. We are not just doing a will or an estate plan, we are looking at all of the issues seniors face. What sets us apart is that we take a team approach. Everyone in our office is passionate about helping seniors and we have a unique perspective and appreciation for the difficulties of the process of getting old and dying.
Frequently Asked Questions Medicaid and Long Term Planning in Kennewick, Pasco & Richland
How Much is Long-Term Care in Tri Cities, WA?
Some facilities charge upwards of $15,000 a month for care. Long-term care costs can deplete your entire estate. Evergreen Elder Law can help you obtain the assistance needed to pay for these expenses.
What Are Some Ways I Can Get Help Paying for Long-term Care?
Preparing as early as possible is the best option when trying to protect assets. Evergreen Elder Law can help by offering pre-planning services to prepare you for the long-term care you may need. You want the best care and shouldn’t settle for less because of the cost. We have experience helping seniors qualified for Medicaid and VA benefits while preserving your assets.
How Do We Qualify for Medicaid to Help Pay for Long-Term Care?
The healthcare program known as Medicaid was put in place to help low-income families and individuals obtain the medical help they need to pay for long term care. You shouldn’t have to deplete your resources to obtain help. Evergreen Elder Law can help you access care without losing all your assets. We utilize strategies to protect your estate while getting you or a loved one qualified for Medicaid.
Why Do I Need an Attorney for Long-Term Care Planning?
Planning for long-term care can be tremendously complicated. Having Evergreen Elder Law in your corner will help you understand the process and ensure you and your assets are protected. We can help you qualify for Medicaid without going broke.
What Makes Evergreen Elder Law Different Than Other Attorneys?
Long-term care planning is complex, and the laws are often changing. The attorneys, paralegals, and administrative assistants at Evergreen Elder Law dedicate themselves to staying up-to-date on the changes.
Get the Medicaid Benefits You Deserve Today
There are four ways to pay for long-term care:
We specialize in the two government programs that are available to help pay for long term care, Medicaid and the Aid and Attendance Pension Benefit. For both, there is an asset or resource requirement, an income requirement, and a medical need requirement. You have to meet all three, and that is where we come in.
For someone that is over resourced or over income, know what your options are before you start to liquidate assets. Know that you have choices, you can strategize, but the planning is very complex. There are complex rules even with gifting that you need to know about. The laws are changing all the time, in fact the laws can change every quarter.
Contact a Medicaid & Long Term Planning Attorney in Tri Cities Today
At Evergreen Elder Law, we provide a holistic and team-centered approach to estate planning and asset protection to help Tri Cities seniors secure their financial future. Our goal is to help your put a flexible, thoughtful plan in place that protects as much of your estate as possible.
We specialize in the two government programs that are available to help pay for long term care, Medicaid and the Aid and Attendance Pension Benefit. For both, there is an asset resource requirement, an income requirement, and a medical need requirement. You have to meet all three, and that is where we come in. By creating a personalized, holistic strategy, we can help ensure you not only create a long-term care plan that works for you but also secures your financial future.
Because one of the hardest parts of long-term care planning is just getting started, we would encourage you to schedule a free consultation to learn all of your options. Contact us today to get started.