Category Archives: Planning

Informational Elder Law Workshops Available Around Ohio

By Lori McBride

In spite of the storms this winter, Attorneys Thom Cooper and Mitch Adel have been on the road, providing free informational workshops to seniors and their families throughout Ohio.

In February, we were in Ahsland, Clintonville, Frankfort, Greenfield, Westerville, Etna, Granville, Mount Gilead, Hilliard, Deleware, Upper Arlington, Urbana , Bellefontaine, Loveland, Milford, Spencerville and Cridersville.

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The topics of discussion included:

  • How to protect your assets from Catastrophic Illness and Nursing Home cost without purchasing Nursing Home Insurance.

  • Expanded Estate Recovery Law- Government liens placed on Seniors' Real Estate.

  • How to lower your income taxes and avoid Capital Gains Tax.

  • How to Avoid Probate.

  • Pros and Cons of the Revocable Living Trust.

  • How to Avoid “Tax Traps” when transferring assets to children.

  • Emerging Trends where children are becoming responsible for their Parent's Healthcare.

If you missed one of our seminars in your areas or would like to make reservations for an upcoming workshop, please call me, Lori McBride, at 1-877-401-2175.

 

Do you need a Plan or Trust Review?

By Bethany Smith

Screen Shot 2014-03-18 at 12.31.33 PMMany people believe that once their trust has been signed, they can place it somewhere for safe keeping and forget about it. That can be a costly misconception. Trusts are fluid documents, meaning they can be changed and should be kept updated. That is why at Cooper, Adel & Associates, our attorneys recommend a review of work done with our firm every three to five years.

There several reasons you might need to have changes made to your trust. First are changes to the law. While we make every effort to keep our clients aware of changes in laws that may affect them, we still need to meet with you to review how the law affects your plan specifically. Your trust may also need to be reviewed and potentially updated any time you have life-changing personal events such as deaths, births, marriages or divorces. These situations may require thoughtful consideration about who is in charge, who your beneficiaries will be and who may have a difficult situation for which you need to plan. Of course, changes in your financial situation such as retirement, inheriting money or land or even winning the lottery are all times that you should think about a Review. Finally, serious changes in your health that may mean you will need extra care should make you consider a Trust Review.

Not every plan includes a trust but that doesn't mean you should not review your plan periodically. Even if you do not have a trust, changes in the law, changes in your money, family or health should motivate you to seek the counsel of an experienced elder law attorney.

Please call our office at 1-800-798-5297 to schedule your review if you feel that you need additional assistance getting your ducks in a row.

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

What Retirees Should Know About Elder Law

By Roy Whited

Screen Shot 2014-03-03 at 11.39.22 AMThis information was taken in part from a newsletter published by the First Knox National Bank and the Farmers Bank, and Farmers & Savings Bank, a division of the Park National Bank.

A new specialty in legal practice, “elder law”, has emerged over the past few decades, in part in response to the needs of older people and their families. Retirees and senior citizens have some special laws and programs that apply only to them, and the laws that apply to us all may take on a new aspect when applied in the unique circumstances that the elderly face. The core areas for which elder law attorneys provide advice include:

  • Health and long-term care planning

  • Access to public benefits, including Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security

  • Surrogate decision-making, including both medical and property management decisions

  • Older persons' legal capacity

  • Wills, trusts, and estates

Although any attorney may include elder law advice in his or her practice, some are now becoming specialists in this field, and national organizations have been created for specialist certification. To achieve a specialist designation, an attorney must be able to help with insurance, housing, long-term care, employment, and retirement issues.

Cooper, Adel & Associates, LPA, a law firm working exclusively in the area of elder law have two such specialists – Thom L. Cooper, Certified Elder Law Attorney, founder of the firm, and Mitch J. Adel, Certified Elder Law Attorney and managing partner. Attorney Cooper was among the first group of attorneys to become certified as an elder law specialist and attorney Adel just recently received his certification.

The National Elder Law Foundation is approved by the American Bar Association and the National Elder Law Foundation. It is also approved by The Ohio Commission on Certification of attorneys as specialists.

Both Attorney Cooper and Attorney Adel offer a complementary one-hour consultation to those individuals who have an interest in learning more about elder law and what they can do to protect their families assets. Call 1-800-798-5297 today to schedule a free consultation.

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

I am over the age of 60 and getting remarried. Do I need a prenup?

By Attorney Dan Vu

ohio-elder-law-attorneysIf you are considering remarriage after the age of 60, a prenup might not be the only thing you need to consider. A remarriage at this age has profound estate planning implications, both on your plan and your soon to be spouse's plan. Many people at this age already have an estate plan in play, perhaps it is just a will or a revocable trust. These documents will need to be revisited to match any new prenup.

More importantly are the unforeseen consequences that many attorneys forget to consider. For example, did you know that if you remarry, with or without a prenup, your new spouse must spend YOUR money to pay for health expenses, like a nursing home, before he or she will qualify for benefits? In others words, government benefits like Medicaid ignore prenuptial agreements, wills, and revocable trusts and will count both spouses' assets against the one spouse who is in a nursing home. So a remarriage where one spouse's assets or health is very different from the other spouse can become very complicated. It can cause ill will in the family, especially when catastrophic medical costs are incurred.

Does this mean you should avoid getting remarried? Absolutely not! There are, of course, benefits, namely tax benefits to being married. For some of you, the greatest motivation for remarriage is professing your love to each other and the world.. So get married, but right before, see a good elder law attorney to talk about what you can do to avoid the negative consequences of remarriage.

What Are The First Steps To Take When A Loved One Dies?

By Steve Wright

When a loved one passes away, it is an emotional time that you should spend with family and friends. Unfortunately, here are a few tasks that will require your attention soon after the death if you are the estate representative.

An important first step you must take as the estate representative is to locate any legal estate documents that the deceased may have had created, particularly any trusts and/or wills. These documents will play a fundamental role in disseminating the estate. Also, you will need at least one certified death certificate. It's a good idea to have at least three. Most financial institutions will require documentation that you are the estate representative and a copy of the certified death certificate in order to release information to you.

Next, you will want to begin compiling the assets and liabilities the decedent left behind. A good starting point is to check their mail.

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The mail will usually contain updated bank statements and statements from other financial institutions such as mutual funds, stocks and bonds. These statements will start you on the right path of determining what assets there are and what to you will need to do with them. In addition to gathering financial statements for each account that the decedent had, you will also want to seek information on other assets such as real estate, insurance, and titled vehicles.

Another good step to take is to contact each institution that the decedent received any type of income from, such as Social Security, STRS, or the Department of Veterans Affairs. This is important so that you can avoid future repayment requests and it will also inform you of any funds or other benefits that may be due the estate.

Finally, contact the decedent's estate planning attorney if they had one. Often, the law office who prepared the estate plan can provide you, as the estate representative, with invaluable guidance during this process.  

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

A new understanding

By Jessica LoPiccolo

Screen Shot 2014-02-24 at 10.04.21 AMThe elderly are not the only ones who fall and break their bones. Last April, I fell down stairs and broke my left ankle in three places and severely sprained my right ankle. I was bedridden for what seemed like an eternity. I had to teach myself to walk again at the age of 25. I went from being completely independent to being completely dependent on my family and friends. I had to be waited on hand and foot for everything. It is a terrible feeling to be dependent, to rely on loved ones for even your most basic needs. It is not something that young people think about, but, in a way, it has given me a new understanding and appreciation for the trials and frustrations of our clients.

As you age, you may not be able to do all the things you once did independently. It is a hard thing to accept. Most of our clients do not want to be a burden to their children. I can better relate now because I really did not want to be a burden to my family and friends. I can tell you that I try even harder to make it easier for our clients these days after my experience.

Here at Cooper, Adel & Associates, we specialize in elder law. If you or you know of a loved one who might need guidance with pre planning or nursing home planning, please give us a call for a free consultation.  

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

14 Money Valentines to Gift Your Sweetheart

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 8.01.55 AMby Sheryl Nance-Nash

Your typical Valentine’s Day conjures up images of flowers, candy and a candlelight dinner. Money—other than what you paid for the champagne and oysters—probably doesn’t come to mind.

But if you’re serious about making sure that your love story has a happy ending, you can use the romantic holiday to give each other gifts that say both “I love you” and “I want us to have a secure future together.”

Whether you’re in a serious relationship, engaged or already married, we’ve gathered ideas for 14 financial Valentines that you can gift your sweetie this year.

1. A Couple’s Financial Consultation

Normally, telling your significant other that you both need professional help isn’t a great sign for the longevity of a relationship. But signing up for a couple’s consultation with a financial planner may be a gift that actually increases your relationship’s long-term staying power, says Jennifer S. Faherty, a Certified Financial Planner™ and founder of Redbird Partners.

That’s because fighting about money is why most married couples split up, according to a study by Kansas State University researcher Sonya Britt. She found that couples who argue over money early on in their relationships were at a greater risk of divorce—regardless of their income, debt or net worth levels.

By meeting with an adviser, you’re making sure that both of you are involved in financial decision-making, and that you are on the same page when it comes to your bigger goals and how you’ll reach them.

2. A Life Insurance Policy

Ensuring that your partner is taken care of in the event that something happens to you—and vice versa—offers the gift of peace of mind. “You never know where the road of life will take you, and planning ahead for illness or death as well as having life insurance can help couples be ready,” says Mitchell Adel, a certified elder law attorney and managing partner at Cooper, Adel & Associates, a law firm specializing in estate planning and elder law.

Life insurance is especially important if you think that your loved one might have difficulties meeting monthly living expenses and paying one-time costs in the event of your death, like funeral expenses, as well as such longer-term bills as a mortgage—not to mention just the general cost of raising children.

RELATED: Checklist: I Want to Get Life Insurance

3. A Will

Death isn’t the most romantic dinner date topic, but being proactive about crafting a will can ensure that your money and belongings are distributed to the people you love, rather than leaving it up to the law. If you haven’t put your wishes down on paper yet, you’re not alone: Some 41% of Boomers and 71% of those under 34 polled by AARP said that they didn’t have a will.

Currently, intestacy laws (those related to the succession of your assets if you don’t have a will) don’t take into consideration cohabitation or domestic partners—making wills all the more valuable if you are unmarried. And even if you are married, all assets don’t automatically go to your spouse—much of it depends on state laws, says Josh Fatoullah, founder and C.E.O. of JR Wealth Advisors LLC.

RELATED: Death Dinners: Why Dying Is a Supper Topic Du Jour

4. A “Special Occasion” Fund

One study of more than 1,200 Americans conducted by psychologists Leaf Van Boven and Thomas Gilovich found that people derived greater happiness from investing in life experiences, like travel or a concert, rather than from purchasing material goods. “So creating a special savings fund toward these types of experiences is a good idea,” Faherty says.

What’s more romantic than having an account labeled “Second Honeymoon” or “My Sweetheart’s 40th Birthday Bash”? Once you’ve set up a separate bank account for a short-term goal that you share, create a priority goal folder for it in your LearnVest Money Center, so you and your honey can watch the money grow. After all, those shared experiences could be what gets you through the challenging times.

5. A Beneficiary Designation

Even if you’ve named your sweetie in a will, you’re not off the hook with important paperwork. You still need to name your significant other as a beneficiary to your retirement savings, financial accounts, trusts—anything with a deed or title. That’s because “beneficiaries supersede what’s written in a will, and assets with named beneficiaries avoid probate,” which is the court process that administers a will, Fatoullah points out.

So it’s important to make the designation official on accounts like your IRA or pension. Your 401(k), by law, goes to your surviving spouse, unless you’ve made arrangements for another beneficiary (you can only do this with your spouse’s consent). Even so, it’s still better to have it on record, especially in the case of a domestic partnership, so you can solidify your relationship even further in the eyes of the law, whether the partnership is officially registered or not. “Show your commitment by making sure your beneficiary understands their next steps and their options when you pass away,” Adel says.

RELATED: 6 Documents Everyone Should Have to Protect Their Finances

6. A “Gift Card” Redeemable for Financial Duties

Often one partner assumes the heavy lifting when it comes to managing household finances. If your significant other is typically the one who makes sure that the bills get paid on time, Faherty suggests offering a Valentine that lets you switch roles for a period, so you can both be involved in money matters.

As an added bonus, you could pair your symbolic gift card with a real one that can be used toward an activity that replaces your partner’s bill-paying time, such as a massage or dinner with friends.

7. A College Fund

Maybe you already have small children … or maybe you just have babies on the brain. In either case, as soon as you both know that kids are part of the picture, it’s smart to start saving for their college education. Although it will be years until they hit campus, planning early will help save you and your sweetheart some financial worry in the future: Inflation in college tuition has historically outpaced regular inflation—sometimes as much as 2 to 1.

So explore the various vehicles together, and be sure to get professional advice before you pick an investment route. “Especially if children are not yet in the picture,” Adel says, “work with financial and legal professionals to ensure you’re setting up an account that takes advantage of tax incentives.”

RELATED: 9 Mistakes Not to Make With 529 Savings Plans

8. A Monthly ‘Money Date’ Night

It’s not pillow talk, but it’s just as necessary. Smart financial planning between couples is all about communication, after all. And Valentine’s Day can serve as the perfect opportunity to launch a monthly financial meeting of the minds, so to speak. It doesn’t have to be formal, either—it can be a once-a-month “date night with purpose”. “To keep the mood light, open a bottle of wine, play music and order takeout,” Faherty says.

What’s important is that you devote the time to discuss whatever financial issues are on your mind. You could plan to tackle one financial to-do each month, such as investigating how to reduce your cable bill, shopping around for cheaper car insurance or even just seeing how well you’re both sticking to your monthly budget.

9. A Joint Charitable Gift

Love begets love, and giving back can be a gift that warms both of your hearts. Have a heart-to-heart about the societal ills that concern you both, and then research charities that are working to address those problems.

To check that a charity is worthy of your money, go to reputable sites like charitynavigator.org and guidestar.org. And remember that the organization must be recognized as a 501(c)(3) by the IRS in order to get a tax credit for your donation.

10. An Investment Account for Your Future

Now, for a Valentine that represents your long-term goals. There’s nothing that says commitment more than saving up for a future home or the globetrotting you’ll do in retirement. Whatever the ultimate objective, starting an extra nest egg outside of your retirement savings helps you to both picture a future together.

As with your special-occasion fund, connect the account to a specific, future goal and determine when you want to accomplish it. This will not only remind you of the goal, says Faherty, but it will also help determine the best investment vehicle and asset allocation to fund it. Use this checklist to learn how to get started.

RELATED: 3 People, 3 Portfolios: What the Ups and Downs of the Stock Market Have Taught Me

11. A Plan to Pay Off Student Loans Together

In 2013, student loan borrowers owed the federal government more than $1 trillion. That’s a hefty debt—and what you owe as a couple could be keeping you both from other financial rites of passage, such as buying a first home.

Although student loans are better debt to carry than, say, credit card debt, it’s still ideal to have a plan to steadily pay them off together, says Faherty. “When my spouse and I got married, we had about $15,000 in combined student loans, and we put the money we received as wedding gifts toward paying them off,” she says. “We wanted to begin our lives together fresh. With this burden off our shoulders as soon as possible, we would be able to focus on and work toward other financial goals.”

RELATED: I Want to Pay Off My Student Loans

12. An Emergency Savings Fund

Every couple gets hit with the unexpected at some point, whether it’s a job loss, illness or even natural-disaster-related repairs. An emergency situation can put even more stress on a relationship if there isn’t a cushion of money to get you through the ordeal.

And don’t think it can’t happen to you: In a poll conducted by Bankrate.com, only 24% of those surveyed said they had enough to cover six months of expenses. Spare yourselves the future drama, and commit to building at least six months’ worth of expenses for those “just in case” moments. Figure out how much you can sock away each month, and then contribute together.

13. A Long-Term-Care Insurance Policy

Picture yourself growing old together. Now picture yourself growing old together without stressing over home- or health-related costs. Sounds better, right? Long-term-care insurance can help cover costs associated with assisted living or nursing homes, as well as expenses tied to receiving care at home, so the grayer versions of you and your sweetie can have peace of mind.

That time of life may seem far off, so why look into a policy now? Because the earlier you sign up for it, the better value you can expect for your premium dollar. And often, when you sign up together, says Fatoullah, you get a discount.

So be sure to start looking into long-term care insurance for you and your partner once you hit 50, and if you’re under 40, you may want to consider coverage for your parents. Almost nothing is less romantic than having your mother-in-law move in with you because she didn’t have a proper plan in place for her own long-term care!

RELATED: Long-Term Care Insurance 101

14. A Financial Filing System

According to Faherty, much of your personal financial success depends on one major factor: organization. Paying bills, rebalancing accounts, updating beneficiaries and locating documents for filing taxes are all less likely to fall through the cracks if you’ve nailed down a system for keeping them in one place.

A user-friendly, soup-to-nuts system, such as File Solutions’ Home Filing System, can give you the boost you need to start early on a couple’s spring-cleaning project. There are also digital options, like these apps, which can help you get virtually organized. Or you can use something as low-key as color-coordinated binders and folders to organize paperwork, adds Faherty.

Organization lessens stress. And the less stress you have, the more you’ll be in the mood for romance.

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

Does my spouse automatically inherit my car when I die?

By: Jon Stevenson

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 9.23.38 AMThe short answer in Ohio is yes. According to Ohio's BMV website, bmv.ohio.gov, your spouse will be entitled to up to two vehicles in your name under the surviving spouse law. To transfer the vehicles, your spouse will have to make a trip to the Title Office and apply for a surviving spouse certificate of title. The BMV warns that some Title Offices will require a certified copy of the death certificate so it's a good idea to call ahead for requirements.

While the above will apply to most Ohioans vehicles, there are some vehicles to which this law does not apply. The following is a list of qualification for a vehicle covered under the surviving spouse law:

  • The vehicle/vehicles cannot exceed $40,000 in value.
  • The vehicle/vehicles must be passenger vehicle, ¾ ton truck or smaller, or a motorcycle.
  • Commercial vehicles do not qualify
  • Motor Homes do not qualify
  • Recreational vehicles do not qualify

So whether you finally got that “arrest-me-red” sports car after the last kid left the nest, a pick up truck capable of towing Mt. Everest or the latest and greatest in RV technology (complete with home theater and 5 lane bowling alley) you're going to want to do some planning to insure your spouse won't be lost in the limbo of probate.

The question we have not answered here is what happens to the vehicles when your spouse dies? That can take more planning, particularly if you have a classic car you wish to keep within your family. Call us to discuss a strategy.

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

Who will take care of my funeral?

By Managing Attorney Mitch Adel

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 8.57.16 AMSince starting my career in Elder Law and Estate Planning almost a decade ago, I have heard a ton of stories about the disagreements about what happens when someone passes away, from the families that argue about what music mom wants played at her funeral to the families that squabble over what photographs should be presented at the calling hours. These stories result in the second biggest fear we have for our clients, (after losing everything they worked a lifetime to earn), that families leave a hassle for those they leave behind.

As I tell all my clients, “Everyone in your family and their spouses or significant others have heard one way or another about how you want to be treated at death, make sure you put your wishes in writing.” By creating a Designation of Funeral Trustee your family can resolve and hopefully avoid the arguments over petty things when you pass away.

Why bother putting it in writing? The worry we have is that these arguments and ill feelings resonate for years after the parents are deceased and regrettably the family who was close for years, never talks again for the rest of their lives. Planning your funeral can be an uneasy process, but using a Designation of Funeral Trustee, you can list all your specific wishes regarding your funeral, hopefully clear up the uncertainties and provide guidance to those left behind. Those specific wishes can be as small as what dress mom wants, what church or synagogue dad wants to the remarkable complexities that might accompany a funeral like the one in Mechanicsburg, Ohio this past week.

http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2014/01/31/buried-on-motorcycle.html

From the article you can see that Mr. Standley had been planning his funeral for over 18 years. At one point, he was even required to go before the Champaign County Board of Health to obtain permission for the unique burial he wanted, posed on his Harley!

If you have specific wishes regarding your funeral, you would like to discuss options for payment of your funeral or you would simply like put down in writing some basic notes and avoid future conflict, please contact us and allow us to create a Designation of Funeral Trustee on your behalf.

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.

When Should I Apply for Medicare?

By Chris Meyer

Screen Shot 2014-01-28 at 11.45.26 AMMany of our clients are unsure about when they should apply for Medicare. With the ever-changing rules and regulations of the healthcare world, it is difficult to keep up to date on the suggested age of applying for Medicare as well as the standard procedure as how to apply. It is important to know, assuming that you are not covered by an employer-sponsored program that you can and should apply three months before you turn age 65, including the month you turn 65. You can also apply three months after you turn age 65. If you do not sign up during this time period, you may have to pay a higher premium for late enrollment in Part B!

According to ssa.gov, “most people age 65 or older who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States are eligible for free Medicare hospital insurance.” You are eligible at the age of 65 if one you meet one of the following requirements:

  1. You receive or are eligible to receive Social Security benefits

  2. You receive or are eligible to receive railroad retirement benefits

  3. Your spouse receives or is eligible to receive Social Security or railroad retirement benefits

  4. You or your spouse (living or deceased, including divorced spouses) worked long enough in a government job where Medicare taxes were paid

  5. You are the dependent parent of a fully insured deceased child.
     

However, you are also eligible for Medicare before the age of 65 if one of the following requirements are met:

  1. You have been entitled to Social Security disability benefits for 24 months

  2. You receive a disability pension from the railroad retirement board and meet certain conditions

  3. You receive Social Security disability benefits because you have Lou Gehrig's disease (amyorophic lateral sclerosis)

  4. You worked long enough in a government job where Medicare taxes were paid and you have been entitled to Social Security disability benefits for 24 months

  5. You are the child or widow(er) age 50 or older, including a divorced widow(er), of someone who has worked long enough in a government job where Medicare taxes were paid and you meet the requirements of the Social Security disability program

  6. You have permanent kidney failure and you receive maintenance dialysis or a kidney transplant and:

    - You are eligible for or receive monthly benefits under Social Security or the railroad retirement system; or

    - You have worked long enough in a Medicare-covered government job; or

    -You are the child of spouse (including a divorced spouse) of a worker (living or deceased who has worked long enough under Social Security or in a Medicare-covered government job.

All of this information and more can be found on the website ssa.gov. You or a loved one may also apply for Medicare through this website as well.

Please feel free to contact us at 1-800-798-5297 with any questions you may have regarding Medicare. Also, be sure to Like us on Facebook for up-to-date topics in regards to Medicare and a wide variety of other Elder Law related topics.

(pic via Flickr)

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DISCLAIMER – Every case is different because every case is different. This blog does not give legal advice. This blog does not create an attorney client relationship. You are not permitted to rely on anything in this blog for any reason. This blog is an entirely personal endeavor. Every person's situation is different and requires an attorney to review the situation personally with you.
No attorney-client relationship is created by this site.
The use of the Internet, this blog or email for communication with this firm or any individual member of this firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Before we represent any client, the client and the attorney will sign a written retainer agreement. If you do not have a written, signed retainer agreement with us, we are not representing you and will not be taking any action on your behalf.



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