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Davidow, Davidow, Siegel & Stern, LLP
Long Island's Elder Law, Special Needs & Estate Planning Firm

Monday, July 25, 2005

Time is Running Out! Seminar Invitation

Medicaid has long served as a safety net for middle class seniors faced with the catastrophic cost of a nursing home. This program is currently under attack and likely to change. Learn how to PLAN NOW before the window closes forever. Don't limit your options and jeopardize everything you've worked a lifetime to acquire.

NOW, more than ever, it's important to learn the answers to these crucial and timely questions:

If I put together a plan right now to protect my assets from a nursing home, will I be grandfathered in?

What will Medicare cover?

If I can't rely on Medicaid in the future to pay for long term care costs, what exactly should I be doing now?

I want to learn from the Terri Schiavo case...Do I need a Health Care Proxy or a Living Will or both?

What exactly is a Living Trust?

If I become incapacitated, how will my finances and medical decisions be handled?

Do I really need a will?

I have a disabled child. How can I protect and provide for that child when I can no longer do it myself?

What is the difference between Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts?

Join Long Island's Elder Law, Special Needs and Estate Planning Firm for the one FREE seminar you can't wait to attend! Discover why planning NOW is more important than ever.

Presentation and Luncheon
The Islandia Marriott
3635 Express Drive North

Seminar and Lunch are FREE, but reservations are required. Call today to reserve your place...bring a friend. Call 631-234-3030 or email JGrisolia@Davidowlaw.com.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Things to Think About Before You Relocate Your Elderly Parent

Your home is now miles and hours away from your parent. The best thing would be to move Mom or Dad closer…or would it? There are a lot of reasons why it might make sense to relocate an aging parent closer to the rest of the family.

But, before you suggest a move, give it some serious thought. Be sure that this move would really be the best thing for all of you. Once you have made the commitment to relocate, it will be next to impossible to undo.

Following are some important things to think about before you make the decision to relocate an older person:

1. Can my elder get along without me (at least for a while?)

If my elderly parents don’t depend on me for regular assistance now, can the move wait until I have had a chance to learn about local elder resources here?

If I am working long hours, how much will I be able to assist my parent after the move?

Who will select, pack, or sell possessions? Will a house have to be sold?

2. Social Life

Is my elder confident enough to venture out and to make new friends in a strange place? Will he/she be leaving a good network of supportive friends?

If my aging parent is driving on familiar streets now, will he/she be able and safe to do so on unfamiliar territory, where the traffic may be much heavier? Is transportation available, or will I have to be the chauffeur?

3. Important Medical Questions

Does my elder have a long and close relationship with current physicians? Can we find equivalent physicians who will treat an elderly person? Many specialists, in particular, have reduced or closed their Medicare practices.

Will health insurance transfer to this area? HMOs are geographically limited.

Will the climate be a concern?

4. Financial Issues

Is the new cost of living affordable? Social Security and retirement income will not be adjusted if your parent moves to a place with a higher cost of living.

If he/she is currently receiving state benefits or assistance, what will the requirements be to qualify in the new location? Even within the same state, there is often a wait before services resume at a new address.

If a house must be sold, what are the financial (tax and other) consequences?

And, this is the most important question of all…What does the elder think? If he is competent and able to make his own decisions, does he want to relocate? Will you spend hours of effort and anxiety trying to find the “perfect” answer, only to be told to mind your own business?

Source: by Molly Shomer of The Eldercare Team. Please visit Molly’s website at http://www.eldercareteam.com for more elder care articles and important resources for those who are caring for aging adults.”

Wednesday, July 6, 2005

Facts About Long-Term Care

Each year, consumers spend about $40 billion out-of-pocket for long-term care services.1 This does not include the cost of informally provided care; about two-thirds of persons with long-term care needs receive services from unpaid help only.2 Advance planning can help consumers age in place and make optimal use of available services.

About 13 million Americans report having long-term care needs; in less than 20 years, this number is expected to increase by 70% to 22 million people.3 Five percent of the elderly are in nursing homes - about 1.4 million people.4 Approximately 43% of those turning age 65 can expect to spend some time in a long-term care facility, about half of them will require care for three years or more, and 20% will spend five years or longer in a nursing home.5 One in five people who reach age 65 will spend more than two years in a nursing home.6 Rates of nursing home use are declining, associated with an increase in the use of home health care services and alternative residential care services such as assisted living.7 The fact is, 60% of people who turn age 65 this year will need long-term care as they grow older.8
1 Feder, H.I. Komisar, and M. Niefeld, "Long-Term Care in the United States: An Overview", Health Affairs 19 (2000): 40-56.
2 R. Stone, Long-Term Care for the Elderly with Disabilities. Current Policy Emerging Trends, and Implications for the Twenty-First Century (Washington, D.C.: Millbank Memorial Fund, 2000).
3 Facts on Long-Term Care, 1997 (Washington, D.D.: National Academy on an Aging Society, 1997); available at http://www.agingsociety.org/aging-society/publications/fact/index.html.
4 National Nursing Home Survey 1999 (Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics, 2000).
5 M. Donald Wright, "Looking Toward the Future with Long-Term Care Insurance" (Financial Gerontology), Journal of American Society of CLU & CHFC51 (May 1997).
6 P.Kemper and C.M. Murtagh, "Lifetime Use of Nursing Home Care." New England Journal of Medicine (3424): 595-600.
7 National Nursing Home Survey 1999.
8 K.J. Mahoney, L. Connolly, D. Phillips, and T. Hayaski, "Increasing Awareness of Long-Term Care Costs and Options, the Early Experience of the California Partnership for LTC," prepared for the Gerontological Society of America, Coston, MA, 1996.