Friday, July 31, 2015

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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Power of attorney: It’s easily abused - Elizabeth O'Brien's Retire Well - MarketWatch

Power of attorney: It’s easily abused - Elizabeth O'Brien's Retire Well - MarketWatch: It’s a standard part of estate planning. It’s also, according to experts on elder fraud, a license to steal. It’s the power of attorney, a legal instrument designed to give a trusted individual the authority to handle financial or health matters for the person creating it.

As their own parents grow older—and, in many cases, lose the capacity to make their own financial and medical decisions—growing numbers of baby boomers are beginning to wrestle with the intricacies and pitfalls of the power of attorney. And of course, the day may not be too far off when they themselves may have to trust someone else with those powers. “They have great value and opportunity to misuse,” said Randy Thomas, a former police officer in Columbia, South Carolina who lectures nationally on elder financial abuse.

Estate plans usually involve what’s known as a “durable” power of attorney. These allow the trusted individual—legally, the “agent”—to retain power of attorney even when the person who created the document—the “principal”—has become incapacitated. A general power of attorney expires when the principal has lost capacity; these are usually limited to a certain transaction, such as a real estate closing or the license-plate example above. All powers of attorney expire when the principal dies

Thursday, July 23, 2015

How To Get Up After a Fall – A Short Video from Learn Not to Fall

How To Get Up After a Fall – A Short Video from Learn Not to Fall: LEARN HOW TO GET UP

Review Your Risk Now
How to get up
How to call for help
In this short video, Dr. Dorothy Baker, RN PhD, explains the importance of knowing how to get up if you fall, and shows a senior demonstrating these techniques.A  printable copy (PDF) of illustrated instructions on how to get up is available

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Sunday, July 19, 2015

6 Online Resources to Start Advance Care Planning Conversations | American Society on Aging

6 Online Resources to Start Advance Care Planning Conversations | American Society on Aging
By Judy Thomas, JD {Q}It’s never too soon to start talking about advance care planning. Talking with patients and their loved ones—or even your own family members—and helping them plan for future medical needs is the best way to make sure their wishes will be respected.{EQ}

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Strategies to Protect Your Money from Medicaid - is not simply a website, but a community of caregivers facing the challenge of caring for an elderly loved one.
They provide a comfortable meeting place for the free exchange of ideas with knowledgeable professionals, responsive experts, and people just like you. They provide an excellent knowledge network, use it.

The following is extracted from
Too few older adults know and understand their rights and options regarding health care, particularly long-term care, which, to quote the New York Court of Appeals, is "ruinously expensive."

A Caregiver Agreement is an excellent strategy in many cases where extra services are needed or desired that would not be covered by Medicaid, and are outside the scope of what a nursing facility or home care attendants would provide.

The caregiver can be a son, a daughter or other family member, a friend, a geriatric care manager or a home care agency. The services can be paid for in advance, and the payment will then reduce countable resources, helping the person in need of care gain Medicaid eligibility. A family member can render these services, providing income for that person (who may have given up a job or taken time off from work), and reducing conflict with other family members who are unable or unwilling to help out.

If the caregiver is to be paid in advance, the keys to creating an agreement that will be accepted by Medicaid are:

    The contract must specifically define the services provided and hours to be worked by the caregiver.
    The lump sum payment must be calculated using a reasonable life expectancy and legitimate market rates for the services.
    A daily log of actual services rendered and hours worked must be maintained, along with written invoices.
    Upon the death of the patient, any unearned amounts must be paid to Medicaid, up to the amount that Medicaid paid on behalf of the patient.

Spousal Transfers and Spousal Refusal

An important feature of the Medicaid laws is that transfers between spouses are permitted, are not subject to the "look back," and thus do not result in any penalty. In the case of a married couple, one of the basic strategies is to transfer any assets that are in the name of the spouse who needs care to the name of the well spouse (also called the "community spouse" where the spouse who needs care is in a nursing home).

New York and some other states permit something called "spousal refusal." In these scenarios, the well (or community) spouse will refuse to provide support for the spouse who needs care.As a result, the spouse who needs care will be immediately eligible for Medicaid, and will receive services.

Once Medicaid provides services, it has the right to seek contribution from the well spouse. In some cases, however, Medicaid does not pursue its rights, and in other cases it is willing to settle at a discount. At a minimum, the well spouse will receive a significant benefit because any reimbursement to Medicaid will be at Medicaid's discounted rates, rather than at the private pay rates that the providers would have charged.

Unfortunately, the majority of states are "spousal share" states that do not permit spousal refusal. In these states, the resources of both spouses are counted towards the Medicaid eligibility amount, and the above strategy is therefore ineffective.

Elder Law attorneys are able to work within the Medicaid laws to produce favorable outcomes for their clients. Bear in mind that every case has its unique facts, and these strategies might or might not be the top five for you, given your circumstances. In any case, it's hardly ever too late to develop an effective strategy to obtain benefits, and protect at least some of your assets or income at the same time.

David Cutner is a former family caregiver and co-founder of Lamson & Cutner, a boutique elder law firm in Manhattan, known for its successful strategic planning and insights into the issues of today's elder law maze.

{End of Quoting}

I have no connection with  David Cutner the following contact information is my thanks to him.

Lamson & Cutner, P.C.
9 East 40th Street
New York, New York 10016

Contact Information:
Phone: (888) 618-3701

Fax: (212) 486-1600 Web Site:
BLOG The Best Elder Law Blog

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Impaired Hearing Resouurces

Questions to Ask About Durable Medical Equipment and Medical Supplies -

Questions to Ask About Durable Medical Equipment and Medical Supplies -

An article full of very helpful advice and information. A long article and you need to read from end to end to get full benefit
Questions to Ask About Medical Equipment and Supplies

Sample for discussiondisucssion:
Are the senior's needs and comfort periodically assessed?

Handling a dispute with the insurer or vendor:

Has the caregiver made frequent and careful inquiries?

Has all communication (in person, phone, mail, email) been well documented?

If the insurer disputes the need for particular equipment or

supplies or rejects a claim for a more costly but medically justified

item, will an appeal be necessary?

Does the caregiver know how to file an appeal?

Developed by, and made available with the permission of John J. Connolly, Ed.D., President and CEO of Castle Connolly Medical Ltd.,  America's "trusted" source for information on top doctors and quality healthcare.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Alzheimer's and Dementia Care Must read books

 Kisses for Elizabeth: A Common Sense Approach To Alzheimer's and Dementia Care (Volume 1) by Stephanie -Large Print Paperback
also available as  Kindle Purchase

 Creating Moments of Joy: A Journal for Caregivers, Fourth Edition (NEW COVER) by Jolene Brackey (Sep 1, 2008) Paperback
also available as Kindle Edition

The 36-Hour Day, fourth edition: The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, 4th Edition

Sunday, July 5, 2015

When Medicare Will Pay for Skilled Nursing or Physical Therapy - Howard Gleckman

When Medicare Will Pay for Skilled Nursing or Physical Therapy - Howard Gleckman:

Two weeks ago, the government updated the Medicare manual—the
official guidelines for providers. And it has begun an extensive
educational campaign to help them understand the rules. Yet, it is
important that consumers know about this new interpretation as well.

What does this mean? Imagine you have a severe stroke. Before Jimmo,
most people thought Medicare would pay for physical therapy only as
long as that PT was helping you get better. For instance, Medicare would
pay if therapy helped increase the number of steps you could walk
without assistance. Now, Medicare will pay for PT even if it only helps
you maintain your current ability to walk

other restrictions still apply. For instance, Medicare will only pay for skilled nursing care after a patient has been hospitalized for at least three days. And, at least for now, a patient who is in a hospital for observation but has not been formally admitted does not qualify. Medicare will pay for no more than 100 days of skilled care after a hospitalization. And Medicare will not pay for skilled care if needed services can be provided by the patient herself, her family, or by home health aides.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Legal Issues – Revoking prior Powers of Attorney

From Jim Koewler's The Koewler Law Firm website

The agent named in a now-revoked POA may not be happy about being
replaced.  That deposed agent may use the authority in the old POA to
take actions with the principal’s assets.  The bank or investment office
or real estate agent (or anyone else, for that matter) has no way to
know that the POA has been revoked.  (Not many former agents would act
out in this manner, but those few that would certainly can hurt their

To avoid an old POA being accepted as current, there are practical steps (in addition to the legal steps) to revoke an old POA.

The principal should try to retrieve all of the copies of the prior
POAs.  Retrieving all of them can be a daunting task if there are a
number of copies.  (Most POAs have a statement that a copy is to be
honored just like an original, so retrieval of copies is important.)

For advice, representation and peace of mind through these difficult issues, contact Jim Koewler of The Koewler Law Firm.

Legal Issues when someone has Dementia – Revoke prior Powers of Attorney |

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Options To Pay Off A Reverse Mortgage After Parent Dies |

If the borrower was married, the surviving spouse might be able to remain in the home even if he or she wasn't a co-borrower, according to Sarah Mancini, an attorney at the National Consumer Law Center, a nonprofit advocacy organization in Washington, D.C.
That's important,
Mancini explains, because some borrowers remove a younger spouse from their home's title to secure a larger reverse mortgage, leaving that younger spouse vulnerable to eviction and foreclosure after the older spouse's death.

The rules that affect surviving non-borrower spouses are complicated, and surviving spouses and heirs may need to consult an attorney to interpret their rights and options if the spouse wants to continue occupying the property.

Mancini says,"There are serious legal issues, and possible grounds for a legal challenge if the lender forecloses while there is still a surviving spouse."

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