The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A
The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A

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Medicaid Planning Law Services In Florida

Medicaid Planning Law Services In FloridaIf you or a loved one is in need of long-term care, the high cost associated with it may lead you to think it is not something you can afford. After all, the average cost of nursing home care is over $8,000 per month. However, leveraging Medicaid can make planning for these costs easier while also enabling you to better protect your assets.

As you may know, Medicaid provides healthcare coverage to low-income individuals and can include long-term care in a nursing home. Eligibility is considerably rigid, and the application process confusing, however. Partnering with a Medicaid planning law firm may be the best way to determine if this is a strategy you can adopt.

The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A. has offices in Tampa, Florida, and Wesley Chapel, Florida. From them, we exercise our specialty in Medicaid planning for seniors and their families, using our deep understanding of the difficulties and intricacies of the program. We aim to deliver the highest probability of success for all our clients.

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Medicaid Planning

Medicaid planning involves structuring income and assets to meet the program’s rigid eligibility criteria. Good Medicaid planning does this through setting up trusts, transferring assets, and converting assets into exemptions to maximize your assets’ protection. Our Medicaid planning lawyers will assess your specific situation and create a plan tailored exactly to your needs. This is crucial because you may be disqualified even with only moderate wealth.

Filing Applications

Florida Medicaid law requires you to submit a large amount of documentation when applying for long-term care coverage via Medicaid.

Federal and Florida law requires you to disclose all bank accounts and other investment vehicles. This includes any stock or bond holdings you may have, as well as other accounts such as IRAs. Be prepared to submit statements from as far back as five years, as well as any accounts that have been opened or closed within this period. Also, if you have sold or transferred any real estate, you must provide copies of documentation associated with all transactions, verification of fair market value, and property tax bills at the time of sale.

On top of this, you will need to submit the following:

  • Verification of date of birth
  • Income Verification Letter from Social Security
  • Social Security card
  • Medicare card
  • Photo ID
  • Proof of citizenship, if born outside of the United States
  • Verification of pension income
  • Verification of gross monthly income from other sources
  • Income tax returns (including 1099’s) for the previous five (5) years

In addition to this list, you will very likely need to submit several more items.

As you are likely thinking, this is a rather complicated and involved process. However, one of our Medicaid eligibility attorneys can be invaluable in ensuring you correctly submit everything necessary.

If you are a veteran, there will likely be additional items you will need to reap the most from the program. Our Medicaid planning attorneys can tackle these and other special needs Medicaid planning situations for you.

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Long-Term Care Planning

Long-term care planning involves preparing for the chance that you will need someone else to provide you with care at some point in the future. This can involve setting up trusts, purchasing long-term care insurance, and other methods to achieve the result you desire.

Medicaid planning helps you protect your assets while qualifying for Medicaid benefits that can help you pay for long-term care services, such as home health care, assisted living facilities and skilled nursing facilities. Through Medicaid planning, families can protect their savings and assets, while still accessing important long-term care services to enhance their loved one’s quality of life.

Nursing Home Planning In Tampa

Is A Nursing Home Right For Me Or My Loved One In Tampa, FL?

Nursing homes are one of several options, including home care and assisted living facilities, that provide care for elderly or disabled individuals. Nursing home care may be needed for those with significant medical conditions or those who require assistance with daily activities, such as eating, bathing, or dressing.

When deciding if a nursing home is right for you or your loved one, you will want to consider many factors, including that person’s independence, medical conditions, desired living situation, and the cost of care. In the Tampa area, it can easily cost over $100,000 annually for nursing home care.

To help you determine whether a nursing home is the right choice for your situation, it is best to speak with professionals, including your medical care team, as well as a lawyer. A nursing home attorney can help you understand the costs, as well as what options may be available to help you with these expenses.

Do Medicaid Or Medicare Programs Cover The Cost Of Nursing Home Stays In Florida?

With such a high price tag, it is expected that many individuals and families will have concerns about paying for nursing home expenses. While Medicaid and Medicare can both be useful tools for helping with nursing home costs, these programs have certain limitations, like eligibility requirements and coverage conditions.

For instance, Medicare will only cover the initial 100 days of your nursing home stay, and only provides full coverage for the first 20 days. The next 80 days are partially covered, but after 100 days, the patient must pay out of pocket for their care.

Under Medicaid, your cost of care may be completely covered. However, there are stringent eligibility requirements to show that you qualify, including income limits and doctor’s assessments.

While both programs pay for the necessities, like room and board and medical treatment, other elements may cost extra. For example, only shared rooms are covered, so you may have to pay out of pocket to have a private room. To find out more about what Medicaid and Medicare will cover for your nursing home care, consult with a qualified nursing home attorney from The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A.

Long-Term Care Planning In Florida

What Resources Are Available To Manage The Cost Of Long-Term Care In Florida?

There are many types of private, state, and federal resources that can help you with long-term care expenses. However, whether you are eligible to use a specific resource depends on your individual situation. Some of these resources include:

  • Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits
  • Medicaid and Medicare
  • Health Insurance
  • Long-Term Care Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • And more…

Several of these programs have qualification requirements you must meet to access care benefits. Others require that you have purchased insurance and that certain benefits are included in your policy. A long-term care planning attorney can assist you in understanding which of these resources is available to you.

It’s also important to note that many of these resources only cover a small portion of your care costs. For example, insurance policies may cover specific care expenses for only a short period of time. However, when it comes to paying for the care of a loved one or yourself, any amount of financial assistance can be useful.

How Can I Best Plan For Long-Term Care For Myself Or A Loved One?

Long-term care planning in Florida encompasses a host of financial, health, and other life considerations. One aspect of a long-term care plan may include typical estate planning measures, such as drafting a will, advance directive, and power of attorney documents.

When creating a long-term care plan, you should think about the known or expected factors. For instance, what is your or your loved one’s age, general health, and living situation? Do they have any pre-existing health conditions that could affect care? What type of care do you anticipate that this person will need?

It is also essential to consider what unexpected situations could arise. For example, what if the person needs a different level of care than what was anticipated? What if you don’t qualify for Medicaid, or your insurance policy covers less of the cost than expected?

Ideally, you should plan ahead for long-term care whenever possible. However, if immediate care is needed for your loved one or for yourself, it is never too late. You should contact a long-term care lawyer right away to go over your options. Reach out to The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A. to find out more about creating a long-term care plan best suited for your needs.

Special Needs Planning & Special Needs Trusts

What Is The Purpose Of A Special Needs Trust?

A special needs trust enables you to set aside funds designated for the care of a loved one with a disability. If you or a family member has a disability, you should speak with a special needs planning attorney and consider setting up a special needs trust during your estate planning.

Special needs trusts allow you to provide financially for your loved one without putting their other financial support at risk. If you were to give your loved one money directly, it could disqualify them from being able to receive Medicaid or Social Security benefits.

The money in a special needs trust can be used for many different things to improve the life of your loved one. It can, of course, be used to pay for any medical expenses or care costs that are not already covered by public assistance benefits. However, it can also be spent on non-care-related costs, such as travel, appliances, electronics, entertainment, and more.

What Are Some Of The Types Of Special Needs Trusts?

There are many different kinds of special needs trusts, which are based on who funds the trust and who manages the trust. These include:

  • First-Person Trusts, which are funded with the beneficiary’s assets. Creating this type of special needs trust can help the person with eligibility for financial assistance programs, such as Medicaid.
  • Third-Person Trusts, which are funded by another person’s assets for the beneficiary to use. Funds may be accessed during the trust creator’s lifetime or after their passing, depending on the specific type of trust.
  • Pooled Trusts, which are established by non-profit organizations and can be funded by the beneficiary or a third party. They can offer more financial stability since they are usually managed by professionals.

The trust must be overseen by a trustee, who is responsible for properly distributing the funds to the beneficiary. The trustee could be an individual designated by the person who created the trust, or a professional manager, in the case of a pooled trust.

Each kind of special needs trust comes with its own benefits, drawbacks, and rules. A special needs planning attorney can assist you in deciding which type of trust is best for your specific situation. Contact The Law Firm Of Myrna Serrano Setty, P.A. today to find out more information about special needs trusts.

Get Started Today

Medicaid planning may work for you, but it is essential to consult with a lawyer to see if this is so. Our lawyers use their extensive experience in Medicaid planning to protect your assets and position you for a debt-free future. Contact us today so we can show you how.

Myrna Serrano Setty, Esq.

Call Now to Schedule Your
Free 15 Minute Discovery Call
(813) 686-7175

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