Seniors today are living longer and are remaining active into their later years. This presents a new and unique set of legal concerns facing today’s seniors. In the past, seniors prepared for their advanced age by ensuring that an Estate Plan was in place. While still an important piece of the puzzle, this is simply no longer enough to prepare for the future long-term care needs seniors may face. Family relationships have become more complex with increases in blended and nontraditional families. The need for a clearly defined surrogate decision-maker is imperative. Additionally, decisions regarding housing and long-term medical care require preparation; the possibility of incapacity must be addressed. As the cost of these services continues to rise, planning for our later years is increasingly necessary.
"Elder Law" is defined by the clients we serve, rather than having a strictly technical definition. Elder Law is a diverse field of law that touches several other traditional areas of law. It has developed to help seniors and their family members handle the complex issues associated with aging. At Huck & Brisske, LLC in Wheaton, you will work with an Elder Law attorney who takes a holistic approach to handling the spectrum of issues facing you. By using a variety of strategies and techniques, we will assist you to achieve your goals and objectives through compassionate legal counseling.
As with all types of planning, timing is critical. Many of our elderly clients are afraid that their life savings will disappear as they require increasing levels of care or when it becomes necessary for them to enter a nursing home. They fear that they will have to sell everything that they have worked their entire lives for, just to pay for their long-term health care. However, with proper advance planning and awareness of Elder Law in Illinois, families can care for their loved ones while preserving assets for their continued use, for their spouses, and for their children and heirs.
The development of a well thought-out strategy, implemented in advance of when it is actually needed, is crucial to successfully preserving assets in the face of long-term care needs. We can help you and your family develop and implement such a strategy. We will take into consideration the various federal and state laws and the various department practices and policies, and navigate the very complicated process of qualifying for available state and federal benefits. If you plan ahead, you will often still be able to preserve assets and life savings for you and your family.
We can help you achieve a stable and comfortable living environment, financial well-being and long-term health care, all of which we believe are essential considerations as we age.
Financial Well-Being: You worked hard for your money! Long-term health and housing needs are becoming more and more expensive. At Huck & Brisske, LLC, we can help you protect the assets you have accumulated during your life and assist you in qualifying for available government benefits. Without careful planning, benefits may be denied, depleting precious and hard-earned assets that might otherwise have been used for your care. You need a long-term care attorney to help with:
- Retirement Planning - pensions and other private benefits as well as social security entitlement;
- Special Needs Planning - often the preservation of private funds to supplement public benefits substantially improves the lifestyle of a disabled child or adult;
- Estate Planning - executing wills and trusts as well as property transfers can help achieve your goals; having appropriate Powers of Attorney to enable your designated agent to make decisions in the event you are no longer able gives you peace of mind knowing that your specific wishes are being honored and carried out; a HIPAA Authorization guarantees that your loved ones will have appropriate access to your health care information;
- Medicaid Planning - detailed rules and regulations provide for and restrict planning options, therefore, special care must be given to qualifying for this government benefit; and
- Veterans Pension Benefits - eligibility and benefit levels are complex but offer additional support to military veterans and their spouses.
Housing: For many seniors and their families, the question of how to provide safe, affordable residential options has become increasingly difficult. The loss of independence and having to move from the family home can be devastating. There are many long-term care options available:
- Home Care - hiring a private duty caregiver or receiving home health care benefits;
- Continuing Care Facilities - living in independent housing with the guarantee that you will remain on campus as your needs increase;
- Assisted Living Facilities - maintaining some independence while being provided some assistance with daily needs; and
- Nursing Home Care - anything from a short stay during a period of rehabilitation to a long-term stay ensuring that all your care needs are met by qualified staff
Each of these long-term care options requires careful planning and legal consideration to ensure the best possible outcome for you and your family.
Long Term Care: As we live longer, we are facing a multitude of complex health issues, which can affect not only our physical well-being, but also our financial and emotional well-being. By preparing for the possibility of increasing care needs, you and your family will benefit from the peace of mind of knowing you will be cared for and your needs met:
- Private Benefits - receiving employer-based or long-term care insurance benefits;
- Public Benefits - you may be benefit from Medicare, Medicaid, Medigap policies or Veterans Benefits; and
- Health Care Decision-making - executing Health Care Powers of Attorney, Living Wills and HIPPA Authorizations can assist in avoiding the need for a Guardianship.