Our office is focused on Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning that protects you and your family and your assets. Every family is different and so we utilize a four step process that allows us to educate you on the basics of estate planning at our workshops, and then we meet with you to go over your vision for your personalized plan. Then, we meet to design your plan with you and your family utilizing specific design consideration questions that we will give you at the vision meeting. Once you have designed your plan then you will come back for your signing meeting. At the signing meeting we will ensure that you understand the plan you have selected and the benefits of your plan for you and your family. We then follow-up with you and your family for enhanced plans to go over the rules of the road as you move forward.
We also offer an annual maintenance program for all of our clients. For a small one-time fee we agree to keep you informed of the changes in the law that materially impact your plan and also provide you educational workshops to keep you up to date on those changes, and by being a member of our maintenance program you also receive modifications or changes to your plan during that year.
Our office is also ready and able to help you for Medicaid applications if you or your loved-one is in a nursing home or getting ready to be in a nursing home and needs assistance with applying for Medicaid benefits.
Plan while you are healthy not when in crisis. The best time to do your estate planning is when you are alive and well. You simply never know when an accident or illness might occur and therefore it is important to get this done while you are able bodied and in good health. If you fail to plan then unfortunately the state’s rules will control you and your assets and who benefits from your assets. By having your own plan you ensure that your rules control you and your medical decisions and who benefits from your assets.
Do you need a trust? In general, trusts can be very useful but not everybody needs a trust. The greatest benefit of a revocable living trust is that it will help you avoid probate court, which is very costly process and takes at least 7-9 months. By having a revocable living trust, and properly funding it, then you can avoid the court costs, and the attorney fees that are incurred in going to court and filing court pleadings. We also offer asset protection irrevocable trusts, which have the benefit of helping you avoid probate court but also can provide asset protection from your creditors. There are restrictions on what can be done with assets in an irrevocable trust and so it is important that you work with a qualified professional when considering this type of trust.Contact me to schedule an appointment to see how the laws have changed in this area and let me advise you on the estate planning documents that are best for your particular situation.
Are you in a nursing home, or are you likely to go into one in the near future? ? If you or a family member are considering going into a nursing home then you will be facing some very difficult issues and decisions. The most important thing to do is to make sure that you have all of the necessary estate planning documents, such as a power of attorney, living will or Last Will and Testament or trust. The laws have changed regarding business powers of attorney and the Kentucky Courts have recently held that your power of attorney, if it separately lists the power or authority of your power of attorney, must include all the specific powers that power of attorney might need. This means that if you don’t have a power of attorney that is comprehensive and lists all of the potential powers that your agent might need, then your power of attorney might not be effective to assist you in this time of need. Also you need to know what assets are subject to estate recovery, and what assets are exempt assets that you can keep and still apply for long term government benefits known as Medicaid. These are all issues that I can assist you with at a consultation here at my office or at your home, whichever is more convenient to you.
Has your power of attorney been reviewed by an attorney within the last 3 years? The law continues to change and it is now more important than ever that you have an updated business and health care power of attorney that includes the specific language that allows your agent to set up trusts and to apply for government benefits. Let me review your power of attorney to see if it has the necessary language.