Updated Guidebook Contains Latest Figures from Medicaid, Looks at Life Care Planning and Traditional Elder Law Plans
The Elder Law Office of Tully & Winkelman, P.C. has announced the release of “How to Plan for Aging Parents 2012.” The guidebook contains the latest figures from Medicaid and explains what adult children of elderly parents need to do to make sure their loved ones are taken care of, while ensuring their financial health at the same time. As a community service, Tully & Winkelman, P.C. is offering the guidebook free of charge and it can be downloaded from its website.
As parents age, their children will have to deal with their parents’ health issues, and financial concerns will likely become an issue they will have to face. When the children can no longer provide the care and assistance that their parents need, they may want to place their loved ones in a nursing facility, which may be very expensive and may not be the most ideal environment for their parents. In addition, Medicare does not cover the cost of long-term care in a nursing facility.
“If provisions have not been made ahead of time, families can become overwhelmed with the high price and complexity of providing for an elderly parent when they can no longer care for themselves,” said Brian Andrew Tully, Founder, Tully & Winkelman, P.C. “This downloadable guidebook will help prevent those feelings of fear, helplessness and concern by educating you about what options are available to seniors and their caregivers through Life Care Planning.”
The cost of long-term care in a nursing home on Long Island ranges from approximately $115,600 to more than $152,300 a year, according to the guidebook. Home health care costs between $18 and $30 an hour. In response to the increase in chronic care illnesses, many law firms are offering Life Care Planning as a more viable alternative to traditional elder law plans.
Life Care Planning is a new specialty of elder law emerging around the country. While traditional elder law or Medicaid planning law firms focus on saving the elder’s money for the next generation, Life Care Planning law firms use the elder’s money to maximize his or her quality of life and independence. Life Care Planning helps people find and pay for good care by bundling asset protection, public benefits qualification, care coordination, nursing home advocacy and crisis intervention.
The guidebook also covers other topics such as alternative care plans such as Medicare, “self-insuring” (or paying your own way), private long-term care insurance; Medicaid and The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005; potential Medicaid recovery issues; and how the crisis in health care and long-term care will shape public policy in the coming years.
“Contrary to what many seniors believe, Medicare does not cover everything,” Mr. Tully said. “It is imperative that seniors, those approaching retirement age and the families of those needing long-term care take advantage of the planning opportunities that exist today and implement a Life Care Plan. As with any planning, a good way to begin is to seek competent advice from a qualified professional.”
A member of the Suffolk County and New York State Bar Associations, Mr. Tully is certified as an elder law attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation and focuses his law practice on life care planning, elder law, estate planning, Medicaid benefits and asset protection. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Life Care Planning Law Firms Association and has accreditation from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to represent and assist veterans and their spouses in the preparation, presentation and prosecution of claims for benefits, including the Aide and Attendance Pension.
In 2004, he founded the ElderCare Resource Center, Inc. (www.eldercareresourcecenter.info), whose mission is to be the community resource for support, answers and expertise in regard to advance planning and informed decision making about present and future long-term healthcare. The Suffolk Nassau Regional Business Partnership voted the ElderCare Resource Center as Educational Business of the Year in 2005. He is also the author of the 2009 updated edition of “Health Care Decision Making in the Elder Law Practice,” which is a resource for other attorneys and is a part of the Elder Law Portfolio Series, released nationwide by Aspen Publishers.