Connecticut Trusts Attorney
Planning for the future can take a great load off your mind. For many Connecticut families, it is important to protect the family home. That way you and your spouse may continue to enjoy many good years there, and when the time comes, you can securely pass that asset on to loved ones.
Preserving assets is just one aspect of estate planning. Many Bristol, Connecticut, families are worried about the high costs of nursing home care, which may or may not be needed in the future. Medicare does not pay for it, and you would need to drastically spend down assets in order to qualify for Medicaid. Few American families wish to face their golden years in poverty.
What Can a Middle-Class Family Do?
The law office of Ruggiero Ziogas & Allaire in Bristol, Connecticut, is dedicated to providing skilled counsel on elder law and estate planning issues. We understand the concerns about long-term nursing home and home health care, and are skilled in creating trusts to help you qualify for Medicaid while maintaining your present standard of living:
- Living trusts: In a living trust, property is transferred during the grantor's lifetime to a trustee. Upon the grantor's death, the property can be transferred without the expense and hassle of going through probate court.
- Irrevocable trusts: Irrevocable trusts are permanent and designed to protect assets and to avoid probate. It allows the grantor to transfer assets to a trustee, thus protecting assets from counting towards Medicaid ineligibility, if sufficient time has passed.Pooled asset trusts: Often used by the disabled or elderly to qualify for public benefits
- Revocable trusts: Another financial and estate planning tool used by attorney Stephen O. Allaire
Starting the Clock on the Five-Year Look Back Period
In February 2006, Congress created the Deficit Reduction Act, which greatly changed how people qualify for Medicaid. The act created the five-year look-back period - a waiting period where you apply for Medicaid and Medicaid examines your finances going back five years. Now people who wish to qualify for Medicaid, such as the elderly or people suffering from M.S. must transfer assets at least five years before anticipated health status changes make Medicaid medically necessary.
Do I Really Need an Elder Law Lawyer?
Clients come to our Bristol offices with many questions. One of the most commonly asked question is why shouldn't I just transfer the title of my home to my son or daughter? By transferring the title without establishing a trust, your assets are completely out of your control. Your adult child could get divorced, become seriously ill or go through bankruptcy, putting ownership of the asset at risk. In addition, your family might end up owing capital gains taxes if they were to sell the property during your lifetime.
Elder law is very complex, and constantly changing. With planning and the counsel of an experienced elder law attorney, you can create irrevocable trusts or other planning tools to help you manage assets and still qualify for Medicaid.
To learn more about special needs trusts, wills and other estate planning tools, contact an elder law attorney at Ruggiero Ziogas & Allaire in Bristol, Connecticut today. We are happy to arrange consultations with clients throughout Connecticut.