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September 2019

5 Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s

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Most people associated Alzheimer’s or dementia with memory loss that disrupts daily life. This is one of the symptoms of the condition, but it is not the only one. It is also not necessarily the most common symptom. As Alzheimer’s affects more and more people and requires extensive health care services, it is important to complete estate planning early to prepare for unexpected situations later in life. It is also important to watch for early signs of Alzheimer’s. It’s one of the conditions that requires the most extensive long-term care services. Other Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s: Memory (already mentioned): It’s...

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What You Don’t Know About Medicaid

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Are you familiar with Medicaid? What do you actually know about it? And more importantly, what don’t you know about Medicaid? What You Don’t Know About Medicaid: Medicaid was created in 1965 and is now the nation’s largest health insurer. It is an integral part of the American economy and society as a whole. Medicaid covers care at the end of life for millions. In addition to providing elder care to many seniors, approximately half of U.S. births are covered by the program. Medicaid is jointly financed by the federal government and the individual states. The coverage provides access to various health benefits for...

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Will Florida Medicaid Cover Nursing Home Costs?

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The state of Florida provides a number of services through long-term care managed care plans for those who qualify. These services may include assisted living facility and nursing facility care, some in home services, and medical equipment. There are two parts to the qualification process required for Florida Medicaid Long-Term Care Managed Care plans. An individual must first need nursing home level care and second, they must meet financial eligibility requirements. Qualifying for Florida Medicaid: Medically Necessary Nursing Home Level Care To qualify for Florida’s long-term managed care plan, you have to require nursing home level care. You must be able to...

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Are You Struggling to Find the Prices for Nursing Home Care?

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Have you noticed that prices for nursing home care are impossible to find? Individuals and families searching for assisted living and other facilities quickly notice how rare transparency in this area. When you are searching for an independent living facility, assisted living community, nursing home, continuing care retirement community, or other care facility for seniors, it’s likely that you’ll see a lot of pleasant photography and wordy descriptions of the location. What you probably won’t see is the price for care at the facility. The public holds most industries to a transparency standard with great success, but one industry that seems...

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How Much Income Goes Into a Miller Trust?

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To qualify for Medicaid, an applicant must have income that falls below specific limits. Some states allow applicants with income above the threshold set by eligibility requirements to spend down their income, covering the costs of their care. But Florida is an income cap state. As an income-cap state, Florida requires applicants with incomes exceeding the allowable limit to deposit excess income in a Qualified Income Trust or Miller Trust to qualify for Medicaid. A Miller trust can distribute a personal needs allowance to the applicant, funds can be used to pay the applicant’s spouse an allowance, and other funds can...

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Is Your Florida Power of Attorney Valid?

Do you have a Florida durable power of attorney? If so, did you have it created or reviewed by an experienced elder law planning attorney? Too often, Florida durable power of attorneys are no good for long-term care planning purposes. If you are concerned about long-term care planning, please consider having your power of attorney reviewed by an attorney experienced in elder law. Why You May Need to Update Your Durable Power of Attorney: As of October 2011, the Florida Power of Attorney Act made the possibility of a general, all-encompassing durable power of attorney a complete fiction. An all-encompassing power of...

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Do I Need to Sell My Home to Be Medicaid Eligible?

Medicaid eligibility requirements are stringent in regards to assets and income. As an experienced Florida Medicaid planning attorney, one of the most frequent questions I hear is if clients need to sell their home to qualify for Medicaid benefits. Do I Need to Sell My Home To Qualify for Medicaid Benefits? The question is not a difficult one, but it also does not have a straightforward answer. There are multiple answers, depending on your situation. When your home is your primary residence, it is a non-countable asset as long as certain conditions are met. The amount of equity in the home...

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Who Should Consider the Benefits of a Reverse Mortgage?

Many Floridians planning for retirement consider the Reverse Home Mortgage. In the right situation, the reverse home mortgage can increase a retiree’s financial security and improve their quality of life. Alongside numerous benefits, there are also drawbacks or disadvantages. Fees: The reverse mortgage is associated with high, upfront fees (closing and insurance costs and origination fees). For a frame of reference, the fees are marginally higher than the costs associated with refinancing. There are options to finance the fees in the reverse mortgage itself to avoid the out of pocket costs. Interest: The reverse mortgage has no monthly payments. As such, the...

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5 Tips for Seniors Considering Selling Their Home

Many seniors seeking to prepare for their future through elder law planning and Medicaid planning struggle with the idea of selling their home. Selling a home they spent many years living in or raising their family in can become a very emotional experience. And emotions are bound to run even higher if they are moving into an assisted living facility or to live with a family member who will provide care or assistance. If you are a senior considering selling your home or if you have a loved one who is a senior selling their home, consider these tips to...

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What is Medicaid and What Does it Cover?

Medicaid is a significant part of the healthcare system in the United States. The medical care coverage program operates at the state level for low-income individuals and families with limited resources. As of 2018, there were close to 73 million people enrolled in the Medicaid benefits program. Medicaid operates at the state level, so may vary from state to state. Applicants qualify for Medicaid based on income and resources. What Does Medicaid Cover? Medicaid benefits offer medical coverage, including most common forms of health care. Medicaid benefits cover some of the same services covered by Medicare but also includes some services...

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