Top 20 Most Vital Pieces of Knowledge American Families Must Know for Their Own Financial Well-Being

These facts and insights are meant to educate you on the following family matters:

  • The dire financial risks of failing to plan properly in light of future long-term care expenses;
  • The functions of the most common estate planning documents as well as their shortcomings;
  • An important benefit unclaimed by many veterans that is easy to overlook; and
  • Considerations of estate planning in light of divorce and remarriage.

Planning to Pay for Long-Term Care Expenses

  1. 70% of Americans who live to age 65 will need long-term care at some time in their lives!
  2. In Northern Virginia, it costs over $140,000 a year for a nursing home bed at some facilities!  The rates around the nation are consistently increasing.
  3. 50% of all couples and 70% of single persons become impoverished within one year after entering a nursing home.
  4. Medicare will not pay you or your family a dime for long-term care.
  5. If planned for using proper Medicaid Asset Protection strategies, Medicaid is available to pay the nursing home costs of almost everyone without forced impoverishment.
  6. Medicaid Asset Protection is a service that is provided by only a very small number of very experienced Elder Law Attorneys.
  7. Medicaid is the most complex body of law in existence, which is why there are fewer than 500 Certified Elder Law Attorneys in the entire United States.

    Facts Every Family Must Know

  8. A Revocable Living Trust or a Will does not protect assets, and the former can be “reached into” by your creditors.
  9. Whether someone dies with a Will or without a Will, their family still has to endure an expensive, complex, and time-consuming process called “Probate.”
  10. If someone dies with a Revocable Living Trust funded with assets, those assets do not have to go through the probate process.
  11. The Living Trust Plus™ is a special asset protection trust (that provides both general asset protection and Medicaid Asset Protection) offered by fewer than three dozen attorneys in the U.S.
  12. Without current Powers of Attorney documents, “living probate” is a potentially embarrassing reality – having to go to court to determine who should be one’s legal Guardian and Conservator.
  13. Both “living probate” and “post-mortemprobate” are public proceedings and matters of public record.

    Facts all Veterans and Their Families Must Know

  14. There are over 22 million veterans in the United States. Out of this 22 million, only about 1% currently receive non-service connected pension benefits.
  15. A married veteran can receive up to $24,239 per year from the Aid & Attendance Pension Benefit alone!
  16. To receive the Aid & Attendance Special Pension Benefit, a veteran must have served on active duty at least 90 days, with at least one day during wartime.
  17. Aid & Attendance is not just for low income veterans: “income” for Veterans Administration purposes is household income minus recurring, unreimbursed medical and long-term care expenses.

    Estate Planning for a Second Marriage

  18. Regardless of whether you have previously done estate planning on your own or with a former spouse, a second marriage always calls for a new estate plan, including a premarital contract.
  19. The main reason for a premarital contract in a second marriage is to determine how your estate will be distributed when “death does you part.”
  20. With a second or subsequent marriage, if there are children from prior marriages, their futures could be drastically altered without proper planning, depending on a multitude of factors.
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About Evan H Farr, CELA, CAP

Evan H. Farr is a 4-time Best-Selling author in the field of Elder Law and Estate Planning. In addition to being one of approximately 500 Certified Elder Law Attorneys in the Country, Evan is one of approximately 100 members of the Council of Advanced Practitioners of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and is a Charter Member of the Academy of Special Needs Planners.

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