Elder Law Estate Planning
Too many people think that a will is all the "estate planning" they need. Yet wills often fail to take into account the majority of a client's assets. Wills do not govern assets passing by beneficiary designations, such as IRA's, life insurance and annuities. Furthermore, clients are increasingly using POD (pay on death), TOD (transfer on death) and ITF (in trust for) designations to entirely bypass the will and the antiquated probate system. As a result, in many cases the bulk of a client's estate is actually "unplanned", except to avoid probate. By this we mean that the assets may still be unprotected from a Medicaid "spend down" if the client one day needs nursing home care; the assets are not protected from the heirs' divorces, lawsuits and creditors; the assets are not structured to stay in the bloodline to the client's grandchildren and the assets are not protected from a spouse's later remarriage.Perhaps the biggest drawback to relying on a will as an "estate plan" is that it utterly fails to address the senior client's most important issue - planning for disability. Absent a plan for disability, the state has written a plan called "guardianship". In guardianship proceedings a judge chooses who will handle your legal, financial and sometimes even medical affairs if you become disabled.Elder Law Estate Planning avoids guardianship proceedings - virtually guaranteeing you will get the person or persons you choose to handle your affairs if you become disabled - usually one or more of your adult children, instead of a state appointed guardian.With the high costs of nursing homes today, clients who don't plan for disability to protect their assets risk losing everything they've worked for."Elder Law Estate Planning" emphasizes the use of trusts rather than wills to solve the myriad legal problems arising from disability and death. "Elder law" is disability planning to put the people you choose in charge and to protect some or all of your assets from long-term care costs. "Estate planning" is death planning to make sure your assets go to whom you want, when you want and the way you want. Estate Planning includes protecting assets from children's divorces, lawsuits and creditors, and from a spouse's possible remarriage while keeping those assets "in the blood" for generations to come.
- Paperback | 176 pages
- 152.4 x 228.6 x 11.18mm | 349.26g
- 02 Feb 2015
- Createspace Independent Pub