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What is probate and should I take steps to avoid it?

Posted on: May 23rd, 2017
There are numerous ways to avoid probate, From Transfer On Death Instruments (TOD's) to lifetime gifting, to living trusts, but they are NOT all created equal....

What Are The 7 Sins Of Elder Abuse? SEAN'S FP!

Posted on: May 11th, 2017
Help our elders live the lives they deserve. Learn the seven types of elder abuse and figure out how to recognize them. Don't underestimate the power you have to change someone's life for the better by simply doing the right thing when you see someone who needs help. ...

What would you do if you lost the ability to speak?

Posted on: May 2nd, 2017
Every day people lose their ability to communicate to others through speech. Imagine how your life would change the instant you lost the capability to make words. How would your loved ones know what you wanted to eat, whether you wanted to go outside, if you wanted visits from family...

Stephen Hawking and ALS, did he beat it?

Posted on: April 11th, 2017
Stephen Hawking suffers from ALS, a devastatingly disease that is usually fatal within 2 to 5 years of diagnosis. So how has Hawking made it over 5 DECADES with the disease? ...

Learn why you CAN be the Trustee of your own irrevocable trust!

Posted on: April 4th, 2017
Many lawyers will tell you that you cannot be the Trustee of your own trust and still qualify for Medicaid. FALSE. Should you hire a lawyer that limits your options as a result of their ignorance of the law? I'll let you be the judge, but consider the following ...

A cure for Sepsis?

Posted on: March 28th, 2017
A Virginia Doctor may have found the answer, and you won't believe how simple it may be...

The 4 W's by Amos Goodall

Posted on: March 28th, 2017
Who, What, When, and Where. Your answers to these elementary question words can have profound effects how your life unfolds, particularly near the end. Click to read more...

A cup a day may keep the doctor away!

Posted on: March 22nd, 2017
A recent study shows that a cup of TEA every day appears to help protect against mental decline...

2017 Alzheimer's Facts and Figures

Posted on: March 14th, 2017
The Alzheimer's Association has released the 2017 facts and figures surrounding the disease. The numbers are staggering!...

Need some tips on adding a wheelchair ramp to your home?

Posted on: March 9th, 2017
Adding a wheel chair ramp to your home can be a daunting task. Here are some tips to help you get it done, so you can experience the freedom, liberation and enjoyment easier movement can provide. ...

Skilled Nursing Medicare on a Slow Decline?

Posted on: March 3rd, 2017
On February 13, 2017 the United States District Court for the District of Vermont approved a stipulated corrective statement disavowing the erroneous, but common, “improvement standard” that Medicare decision makers had been relying upon in denying benefits for patients during their first 100 days of skilled nursing institutionalization....

Do you have the RIGHT Power of Attorney?

Posted on: March 1st, 2017
Pebbles has just learned that due to having an inadequate power of attorney in place essentially all of Wilma’s assets will have to be used to fund her long term care needs. Wilma and her late husband, Fred, thought that the standard power of attorney they got from their family lawyer planned for such a disability. It didn’t....

The Five Components of a Good Estate Plan

Posted on: February 1st, 2017
Many people believe that if they have a will, their estate planning is complete, but there is much more to a solid estate plan. A good plan should be designed to avoid probate, save on estate taxes, protect assets if you need to move into a nursing home, appoint someone to make your health care decisions in the event you are unable to, and appoint someone to act for you if you become disabled....

What's the Difference Between a Will and a Trust?

Posted on: January 25th, 2017
Everyone has heard the terms "will" and "trust," but not everyone knows the differences between the two. Both are useful estate planning devices that serve different purposes, and both can work together to create a complete estate plan....

What is Medicaid and How does it affect the Country and its budget?

Posted on: January 11th, 2017
Here is everything you could ever want to know about how medicaid is built, how it works, and how it effects us as a country. The facts, not the spin:...

Do New York's Courts suddenly disagree about when a Medicaid Qualification Penalty is proper under the law?

Posted on: January 3rd, 2017
Some great cases on when transfers of assets will result in a Medicaid penalty period came down in the final quarter of 2016. Within a month of each other two New York Appellate Court's reached seemingly inconsistent conclusions on when a Medicaid Penalty is appropriately imposed. But are they really inconsistent? ...

The Caregiver Penalty

Posted on: December 29th, 2016
In a crushing blow to family values, the Third Department of the Appellate Division of New York's Supreme Court recently held that the state properly imposed a penalty period on a Medicaid applicant who transferred assets to her caregiver daughter...

The Special Needs Trust Fairness Act

Posted on: September 28th, 2016
The Fairness Act seeks to "right" a decades-old "wrong" in federal law that presumes that all persons with disabilities lack the mental capacity to handle their own affairs. Under current law, if a person with special needs wants to place her own property or money into a special needs trust in order to preserve it and maintain access to government benefits, she must have a parent, grandparent, guardian or court create the trust for her; she can't create the trust on her own. This process makes it unnecessarily difficult for people with few close relatives or limited access to the courts to preserve their assets. ...

Spousal Refusal? Only if you're Willing to defend the resulting law suit!

Posted on: September 7th, 2016
Last month, a New York trial court entered judgment against a woman who refused to contribute to her spouse’s nursing home expenses, finding that because she had adequate resources to do so, an implied contract was created between her and the state entitling the state to repayment of Medicaid benefits it paid on the spouse’s behalf...

Are you one of the 70% of Americans who don't have an up to date will?

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016
A recentl survey shows that previous surveys on the number of Americans who had a will under-reported the truth because they didn't incorporate this key distinction...

Arm's Length Sale Trumps Assessed value of Medicaid Applicant's Home

Posted on: July 1st, 2016
When a house is sold in a transaction to an unrelated party, the sale price is a better indicator of the property's fair market value than the property's assessed value. Such is the holding under a recent case out of New York's Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department. ...

How NOT to do your Estate Planning!

Posted on: June 22nd, 2016
A recent Kings County case illustrates how a Will contest can succeed where an attorney falls short in determining capacity and undue influence. ...

Are you practicing law without a license?

Posted on: June 16th, 2016
There is a BIG difference between medicaid application services and Medicaid QUALIFICATION services. New Jersey has become the latest in a growing line of states to find that non-lawyers who apply the law to a Medicaid Applicants fact specific situation are practicing law without a license. ...

Continuing Care Retirement Communities

Posted on: June 3rd, 2016
Continuing Care Retirement Community Residents must use assets disclosed in their admission agreement before applying for Medicaid....

Personal Care Contracts, a blessing or a curse?

Posted on: May 20th, 2016
A New York appeals court recently ruled that a Medicaid applicant who transferred money to his daughter and son-in-law under a personal service agreement made uncompensated transfers because there was no explanation of the services provided or proof regarding their fair market value...

All Trusts Are NOT Created Equal

Posted on: May 16th, 2016
A New York appeals court rules that a Medicaid applicant's trust is an available asset because the trustees have discretion to make distributions to her...

First Liens First!

Posted on: May 6th, 2016
A New York appeals court ruled that a bank's claim against a Medicaid recipient's property has priority over the state's claim for Medicaid recovery because the bank's lien was filed first....

Why risk litigation over asset transfers?

Posted on: May 4th, 2016
Recently, a New York appeals court held that a Medicaid applicant who transferred money when she was in good health and two years before entering a nursing home presented enough evidence to rebut the presumption that she transferred the money in order to qualify for Medicaid....

Getting Your Affairs In Order - What to do in preparation for your Life and Legacy Planning Consultation

Posted on: September 10th, 2014
Before you meet with your attorney, taking some time to sort through your important papers and get your thoughts in order will save you a lot of time, and make your first meeting much more productive and enjoyable. ...

Why Does Probate Take So Long?

Posted on: August 27th, 2014
Many People fail to create an estate plan, or "plan" with just a will. In those cases probate is the necessary outcome, and the fact of the matter is that the process takes months, if not years to complete. Why? Here are some of the reasons: ...

Inherited IRA's - How to stretch and protect the assets.

Posted on: August 15th, 2014
One of the more generous provisions of the tax code is the ability to stretch out the withdrawal of IRA proceeds by an heir. But how can you make sure that your heirs are wise enough to maximize the benefit of the stretch out? ...

Why Newlyweds Need Estate Plans

Posted on: August 11th, 2014
Unfortunately, many couples spend more time planning their honeymoon than they do planning the best way to protect each other. What happens without an Estate Plan? ...

Who Needs an Estate Plan?

Posted on: June 11th, 2014
If you're reading this, you need an estate plan. Why? The short answer is 'Everyone, age 18 and older needs an estate plan. It doesn't matter if you are old or young, if you have built up considerable wealth or if you are just entering adulthood --you need a written plan to keep you in control and to protect yourself and those you love....

Strategies for Those Awkward Financial Discussions

Posted on: May 14th, 2014
There may be people close to you (spouse, parents, children) who are practicing financial behaviors that are unproductive or destructive. You want to help them get back on track, but you don't want to come across as judgmental or condescending, or put them on the defensive....

How to Minimize the (Voluntary) Federal Estate Tax with Portability

Posted on: April 25th, 2014
Surprising to most people, the federal estate tax is a voluntary tax. Estate planning attorneys used to say, 'You only pay if you don't plan.' Now, portability provides both an alternative and a back up plan to lifetime tax planning. This means you might be able to minimize or even eliminate federal estate taxes even if you didn't plan. Here's how....

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Jeffrey P. Reisner, Esq.
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