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Short-Term Care Insurance: An Alternative to the Long-Term Care Variety

Short-Term Care Insurance: Elder Law Attorney

A little-known insurance option can be an answer for some people who might need care but are unable to buy long-term care insurance. Short-term care insurance provides coverage for nursing home or home care for one year or less.

As long-term care premiums rise, short-term care insurance is gaining in popularity. This type of insurance is generally cheaper than its long-term care counterpart because it covers less time. Purchasers can choose the length of coverage they want, up to one year. According to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, a typical premium for a 65-year-old is $105 a month.

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Costly Mistakes to Avoid When a Spouse Enters a Nursing Home

Help with walking

Moving your spouse into a nursing home can be a weighty decision, emotionally and financially.

If you don’t take the right steps, there is a chance that transitioning to a nursing home will drain your spouse’s finances, and possibly even your own.

In this blog post, we’ll look at some common mistakes to avoid before your spouse transitions to a nursing home.

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Is It Better to Remarry or Just Live Together?

Older Couple: Estate Planning & CareFinding love later in life may be unexpected and exciting, but should it lead to marriage? The considerations are much different for an older couple  than for a young couple just starting out. Before making this decision, you should consider consulting your elder law attorney to review your situation, including the following:

Estate Planning

Getting married can have a big effect  on your estate plan. Even if you exclude your new spouse in your will, he or she is permitted to take an elective share against your estate (usually one-third). One way to prevent this from happening is to enter into a pre-nuptial agreement before your marriage.

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How Medicaid’s Look-Back Period Works

elderly transfer of assetsMedicaid’s look-back period can be confusing, but it’s important because it can have a very significant effect on your ability to pay for long-term care.

Unlike Medicare, Medicaid is a system that’s available only to people who have very few assets. As a result, the government is concerned that people will “game the system” by giving away all their assets to family members and then applying for Medicaid shortly afterward. That’s obviously not fair to the taxpayers who support the system.

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Has Medicare Dropped Coverage of Your Drugs?

medicare transition prescription drug coverageMedicare prescription drug plans can change which drugs they cover, possibly leaving you without coverage for a drug you need. Or you might switch plans, and find that your new plan doesn’t cover your medication at all. In these circumstances, it’s good to know that Medicare drug plans are required to offer you a 30-day transition supply of the drug you’re taking.

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Veterans Face New Limits On Long-Term Care Help

Senior Veterans BenefitsThe U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offers a pension benefit to low-income veterans (and their spouses) who are in an assisted living facility or who need help at home with everyday tasks such as dressing or bathing. The program is called “Aid and Attendance.”

Unfortunately for many veterans, the government recently proposed new regulations that will tighten the qualification rules and impose a look-back period and transfer penalties similar to those under Medicaid. As a result of these changes, anyone who may be eligible for Aid and Attendance should probably talk to an attorney about how to proceed.

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How to talk to people with Alzheimer’s

Reprinted with permission of Philadelphia Inquirer, Sunday, January 31, 2016

Expect to say “I’m sorry” a lot if you decide to try one of the trendier ways to communicate with people who have Alzheimer’s.

There was a time when caregivers tried orienting people with dementia to reality. That often feels like the natural thing to do. “No, Mom, I actually did tell you that. Like, five times.”

But at Daylesford Crossing, an assisted-living facility in Paoli, workers are more likely to just go with it if a resident has some strange ideas.

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A Quick Look at Medicare, Medicaid, and Nursing Homes

Nursing Home CareMany people are surprised to discover that Medicare actually provides very limited coverage for nursing homes.

In theory, Medicare Part A covers up to 100 days of care in a skilled nursing facility for each spell of illness. However, this is true only if the nursing-home care follows at least a three-day admission to a hospital. Further, after 20 days, you must pay a copayment of $157 a day (although this may be covered by Medigap insurance).

In addition, the definition of “skilled nursing” and the other conditions for obtaining this coverage are quite stringent. As a result, very few nursing home residents actually receive the full 100 days of coverage. In fact, Medicare pays for less than a quarter of long-term care costs in the U.S.

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