Elder Law Update – February 2009

What are people calling our office about in order to get solutions and peace of mind?

1. Long Term Care Planning. Long Term Care Planning is the process of solving your problems with strategies for funding of in-home care and long term nursing home care. This is done without losing your home and leaving your family without a dime. Long Term Care Planning is vital for those who cannot qualify for or afford any or enough long term care insurance. The greatest fear of most of our clients is the high cost of long term convalescent care. On average in Illinois: $6000-$8000 per month, per person. Do your Long Term Care Planning. Let’s outline your options.

2. Dying in Pain. Through discussions with health care professionals, it is becoming clear that many people’s Powers of Attorney for Health Care may require change. Specifically, people are authorizing their agents under health care powers of attorney to withdraw nutrition and hydration so that they can pass on peacefully and not prolong life at the end of their days. However, is it wise to remove hydration in all cases? In many cases, painful deaths from cancer can be avoided with morphine drip and other drugs administered through an IV. Thus, do not automatically reject nutrition and hydration in your Long Term Care Planning simply because you “don=t want to suffer hopelessly like Terry Schiavo@. Please consider whether retaining hydration for purposes of pain relief is needed in your Power of Attorney for Health Care. Don=t send mixed signals to health care providers who are authorized by law to provide for comfort care and alleviation of pain. Review your end of life wishes with legal counsel.

3. Asset Protection Planning for Your Children’s Benefit. With the economy in turmoil and stock prices reeling, it is hard to find a silver lining in these events. However, as the Wall Street Journal noted in a recent article, these troubled times offer some of the best opportunities in years to transfer wealth to younger generations. Therefore, instead of leaving assets to children directly, it may be more prudent to leave assets in a spendthrift trust. So while the children do inherit the assets, it is through the vehicle of an Asset Protection Trust. This type of discretionary trust protects the assets, at the time of inheritance, from the children=s divorcing spouses, creditors, predators, lawsuits, and bankruptcies. But you choose who remains in control. Such a trust itself may be the biggest gift you can give to your children.

•4. Estate Tax Planning. President Obama=s proposed estate tax changes are likely to set the federal estate tax exemption at $3.5 million. The proposal would also potentially include changes as to how the estate tax exemption would be treated for married couples. With fiscal pressure ever present, Obama could instead let the Bush 2001 tax cuts lapse thus, allowing the federal estate tax exemption to reduce down to $1,000,000 as in 2001. Enable your estate documents to automatically adjust to changes that are looming.

P.S. Also, don’t miss our workshop: “The Elder Care Journey – How to Get Benefits Coverage for your Nursing Home Care…Without Selling your Home or Leaving your Family Without a Dime” set for the following dates. Please contact our office at (847) 563-4887 to register.

February 18, 2009 at 6:30 pm

March 5, 2009 at 4:00 pm

March 19, 2009 at 6:30pm

Call (847) 292 1220 to make a reservation in our training room.

•- You don’t want to miss this workshop!

Long Term Care Planning Attorneys

The “3 Phase” Lawyers

Legal Counsel Assisting You in the 3 Phases of Your Life:

– Maturing Years – Will, Trust, Taxes, and Asset Protection

– Senior Years – Long Term Care and Nursing Home Protection

– Post Death Years – Estate, Probate, and Trust Administration

“Educate to Motivate”

Anthony B. Ferraro

Attorney-CPA

The Law Offices of Anthony B. Ferraro, LLC

The Estate & Trust, Elder and Asset Protection Law Firm

Columbia Centre I

5600 N. River Road, Suite 764

Rosemont, IL 60018

PH (847) 563-4887

FAX (847) 292-1221

Websitehttp://abferrarolaw.com/

Emailabferrarolaw@abferrarolaw.com

Any tax advice contained in this communication was not intended to be used, and cannot be used, by you (or any other taxpayer) to avoid penalties under the Internal Revenue Code.

The Illinois rules of Professional Conduct require attorneys to identify unsolicited communications to prospective clients as Advertising Material. If the context requires, please consider this letter and the enclosed literature to be Advertising Materials.

This document is for discussion purposes only and is not intended to be, nor should it be, considered as legal advice. You should never attempt Medicaid planning, Estate Planning, Probate or Trust Administration without the advice of competent legal counsel.