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G Brent Powers Law Office
3715 Beck Rd D-401, St Joseph, MO 64506
Q5QW+6R St Joseph, Missouri
We are here to help you, your family, make informed decisions and plan on Elder Law topics such as Medicaid planning, estate and asset protection. Everybody has their own path to “golden years”. Unfortunately, this path has become more complex over the years. Our firm prides itself on offering unique planning and solutions tailored to our clients’ needs. Please contact us today to discuss your questions regarding your home and farm, real property deeds, power-of- attorney, trusts/vs. wills probate vs. not-probate transfers, or long-term issues. Click here for News
Elder Law is a specialist practice that offers senior citizens guidance and help with their legal needs. As we get older, we have to deal with many different issues. Elder Law covers these and many other concerns that elderly people face.
Many elderly people fear losing their savings and home if they require long-term or nursing home care. They don’t wish to become a burden for their family or society.
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Brent has helped thousands of families in Saint Joseph and Northwest Missouri feel at ease with his expert and thoughtful advice. He has more than 30 years’ experience working with clients to design estate plans and real estate transfers.
Brent can help you create a plan that suits your needs and learn more about Elder Law.
Nursing Home Medicaid Planning. It is never too early to plan for Medicaid or long term care. Many people are not planning for long-term health care and are frequently misinformed on how Medicaid works. Many families do not know who is eligible and how planning for nursing home Medicaid can help their spouse or loved ones. It is crucial to hire a nursing home attorney who has experience and is committed to helping families.
Through effective nursing home Medicaid planning Brent has helped many families in our community save hundreds of thousands of dollars. As a Nursing Home Lawyer, Brent would advise a few key things to remember when it comes to Medicaid – Brent, a nursing home lawyer, would recommend a few key points to remember about Medicaid. Most of what you hear from others about nursing home Medicaid are well-meaning, but they are almost always wrong.
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It is almost never too soon or too late for planning.
Your loved ones can still receive Medicaid benefits even after they move into a nursing home.
It is crucial to be aware of legal protections and strategies that are available for the spouse or family member of a resident at a nursing facility. People are often afraid that they might lose their home or their life savings if their spouse or a loved one must move into a nursing care facility. We are able to insure that you will be safe in almost all instances.
Numerous financial safeguards can be provided for seniors and couples, without jeopardizing Nursing Home Medicaid eligibility.
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Division of Assets
A 1988 law, commonly known as the “Spousal Impoverishment Law”, was passed by Congress. This law, which is often referred to as the “Spousal Impoverishment Bill”, was meant to prevent married couples having to lose all of their assets before one of them could qualify for nursing home Medicaid. The “Community Spouse” can retain a portion of the couple’s resources while the “Institutionalized Spouse”, who is eligible for Medicaid, can receive benefits.
The law also established limits on the assets the Community Spouse can retain, if the Institutionalized Spouse will be eligible for benefits. These limits are known as the Community Spouse Resource Allowance, (CSRA). Missouri’s 2020 Community Spouse Resource Allowance (CSRA) allows for a minimum of $25,728 and a maximum amount of $128.640.00. This amount is adjusted each year for inflation and the cost of living. Missouri Medicaid allows for a Division of Assets to be used to determine how much the Community Spouse is allowed to keep.
The Division of Assets takes effect on the first day of the Medicaid applicant’s admission to a hospital/nursing house for at minimum 30 consecutive days. The marital couple’s countable assets, which excludes very few assets that are exempt, are divided into two and each spouse is given their half. It doesn’t matter who owns the asset; the entire couple’s assets are considered when determining the Division Of Assets. This means that a spouse with significant assets will have their assets reduced. Working with an Elder Law lawyer in this process is crucial in order to protect everyone’s interests. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that 86% widows don’t have enough income to cover the costs of caring for their spouses.
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Consider John and Mary, a married couple, with $300,000 of financial assets. John suffers from dementia and requires nursing home services. The Medicaid caseworker is going to allocate $300,000 in financial assets, and attribute $128.640 to Mary (as her CSRA) and $171.360 to John. John must have less $5,000 to qualify for Medicaid. The family will be asked to spend $166,360 on assets that John has been attributed. John and Mary will be told that John must spend 55% their lives’ savings before John can apply for Medicaid. A reduction of the assets of the Community Spouse of this magnitude will mean that 86% of the surviving spouses will live below the poverty line because of the spouse’s medical expenses.
John and Mary don’t have any need to spend their entire life savings if they are able to plan well and get the advice of an experienced Medicaid Asset Protection attorney, such as G. Brent Powers. You can avoid an unpleasant and costly situation by making sure you have the right legal strategies in place.
What if there was no planning? All hope is lost Is it all over? Mary would be able to keep almost all of her financial assets even if John is now in a nursing care facility by using what is called a “Marital Medicaid Compatible Annuity”. G Brent Powers has both the expertise and experience to ensure Mary’s safety and prevent her from becoming homeless.
Brent always makes time to meet in person with clients before presenting or applying for a court appearance.
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Real Estate / Deeds
As they get older, many people start to think about how to transfer their home, farmland and other properties to their loved one or others. Others may require help selling real estate, even without the assistance of an agent or broker.
Each family’s situation should be evaluated in order to determine the best course. Do you think there are benefits to gifting your property to your kids now? What happens if your spouse requires long-term or nursing home care? Is a living estate the best option? What are the tax implications of transferring property? Can the property owner finance its sale?
Brent has assisted hundreds of families over the years to make the right decision when they are transferring a house, farm, or other property.
Proper estate planning involves maintaining control of your assets and continuing to care for your loved ones. It also means that you can distribute your property after your death to the people you choose, whenever you wish, and at the lowest cost.
Planning must take into account your unique needs, wishes and assets. Only then can we decide what documents and strategies to use to ensure your planning works as you expect.
Brent can also help you to create a proper estate plan.
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Administration of trusts
Brent will help you to determine the best method to manage your affairs.
Brent Powers has been a practicing lawyer in Saint Joseph, Missouri and Northwest Missouri since 1980.
Although he began his career in the courtroom as a trial advocate, he changed to Elder Law due to the need of his parents, his older clients, and numerous referrals.
He has been president of Saint Joseph Bar Association.
Brent is a native Missourian, having grew to be a Saint Josephian.
He graduated from Central High School and received his undergraduate degree at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He then earned his law degree in Missouri – Kansas City.
He is an active member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
These national organizations offer education, training, as well as a national network for expertise to assist senior citizens and those with special needs.