Elder Law Attorneys in Gardner Ensure Families of Resources for Long-Term Health Care Needs

There are very few overnight successes, and planning for Medicaid is not one of them

You make plans for weddings, businesses, vacations, retirement, and more. However, healthcare costs can affect every project you have in the works. Even if you're not planning to apply for Medicaid, don't ignore the option. Your family may need it when an unexpected illness or a catastrophic accident results in enormous healthcare costs. The Kansas elder law attorneys at Stockton and Stern LLC have the knowledge and experience in Medicaid planning you need to navigate the complex Medicaid system. We skillfully prepare documents and structure assets to help you qualify for the program. The best time to consider long-term healthcare assistance is before you need it.

Don't count on Medicare until 65. And then don't count on Medicare

At 65, most adults are covered by Medicare, the federal health insurance program that helps pay medical expenses for older adults and younger people with disabilities. However, if you're not disabled, you may need financial assistance for healthcare costs long before you're 65. Even when you attain 65, Medicare may not meet all your needs, e.g., long-term healthcare and nursing homes. Medicaid, on the other hand, is a federal and state assistance program that helps pay the healthcare costs of parents and caretakers in Kansas regardless of their age.

What is Medicaid planning?

Medicaid planning comprises a wide variety of services provided by many professionals from attorneys to healthcare professionals to social welfare workers. In a nutshell, Medicaid planning is any assistance provided to a potential Medicaid applicant in preparation for their Medicaid application. Medicaid planning can be as simple as collecting and preparing documents or as complex as a complete restructuring of your financial assets. It all depends on how close your income and resources are to exceeding the program's requirements.

Applying for Medicaid is a complex affair requiring the help of an experienced Medicaid planning lawyer

The complexity of Medicaid planning happens when an applicant's monthly income and assets verge on the program's financial limits. A knowledgeable Medicaid planning attorney can protect surplus income in pooled, or Miller's trusts, and convert excess resources into assets the Medicaid program won't count towards meeting eligibility requirements, called non-countable assets. But these strategies should not be taken lightly.

Pooled, or Miller's trusts, are irrevocable trusts that lock up income for the stated purpose of a trust. Once created and funded, an irrevocable trust is just that. It can't be undone except in extraordinary conditions. Converting assets into non-countable assets is changing an asset that can potentially pay for healthcare into an asset that can't. For example, taking cash from a savings account, a countable asset, and fixing up the home, a non-countable asset. Like irrevocable trusts, asset conversions are one-way transactions.

Protecting income and converting assets in Kansas requires estate planning lawyers

Creating trusts and converting assets are complex transactions requiring in-depth knowledge of Kansas rules on income, capital gains, personal and real property, and more. At Stockton & Stern LLC, our Kansas estate planning attorneys are well versed in Medicaid and estate planning to protect income and assets and help you qualify for Medicaid and ensure your family's financial future. Call us at(913) 856-2828 or contact us online.