Elder Law & Options for Long-Term Care
When it’s Time to Start Looking After Your Parents
Most people have had loving parents and grandparents who provided for their daily needs while they were growing up, but when the tables have turned it’s time to ensure that your loved ones can age gracefully with the dignity and independence they deserve.
Challenges that older Americans face include housing, healthcare, understanding Medicare and Medicaid requirements, estate planning considerations, and more. At Special Needs Law Group of Massachusetts, we serve as legal counsellors and advocates for elders and their families throughout Massachusetts.
Our Elder Law Services
Elder Law is an aspect of estate planning that focuses primarily on the ever-changing needs of individuals and families as the aging process plays out. Several aspects of the aging process fall under the Elder Law umbrella, including housing, residents’ rights, long-term care, Medicare and Medicaid, as well as some estate planning tools particularly focused on the elderly.
- Housing. The death of a spouse, declining health or safety concerns can all trigger the need for an elder to move. Breaking old emotional ties is hard, which makes finding a new home that feels appealing and accommodating no easy task.
- Resident’s Rights. Residents of rest homes, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes often don’t know when they can say “No” or insist on certain treatment or accommodations. Knowing your legal rights can go a long way toward a good quality of life.
- Medicaid (MassHealth). MassHealth is a program jointly financed by the state and federal governments but administered by the state. If a senior is eligible for Medicaid, many insurance programs are available in Massachusetts with coverage for everything from basic medical care to nursing homestays. Most forms of MassHealth for Seniors have income and asset tests to qualify.
- Medicare. This entitlement health insurance program is managed by the federal government and there are no financial enrollment requirements. A person is eligible for Medicare at age 65, and there are three primary parts: Part A (hospitalization), Part B (doctor’s visits and limited nursing home/long-term care) and Part D (medications).
- Long-Term Care (LTC). LTC bills are typically not covered by Medicare or a Medicare supplement. Statistically, over half of all elders will spend at least some time in a nursing home facility before passing away, with the average cost of most LTC facilities in Massachusetts running $12,000 and more per month. Other LTC options include paying out-of-pocket for in-home nursing care or special LTC insurance policies that offer coverage for LTC facility stays, in-home care, or both.
- Estate Planning. Additional estate planning tools that may in some instances help the elderly achieve their goals are testamentary trusts for a surviving spouse combined with appropriate asset allocation recommendations, irrevocable gifting trusts, and transfers to d4A Trusts for a disabled person.
Our Elder Law Team
With our vastly experienced, expert attorneys, in-house Care Managers, and our network of geriatric care managers, Special Needs Law Group of Massachusetts can provide your family with the counsel and planning to help your elderly loved one enjoy a better quality-of-life as the aging process moves forward.
Plan for now & the future