While our focus at the Oakley Law Group is on estate planning and closely related practice areas, we are frequently asked about issues involving elder law. As an additional resource for our clients, we maintain a list of practitioners who we feel confident will provide sound counsel and legal representation in this area. Should you need a referral, please feel free to call our office and we will be happy to provide a few recommendations.
While elder law is a rapidly growing practice area, many people are not sure what the term actually means. In essence, it involves preparing seniors, together with the people who love them, for the financial, physical and emotional changes that come with growing older. This can involve helping you retire comfortably; making sure you receive adequate care should you become incapacitated; protecting your hard-earned assets for your enjoyment today and that of loved ones in the future; guiding you through the confusing Medi-Cal system in a crisis situation; coping with family disharmony or bankruptcy; and many other issues as well.
Ultimately, our goal at the Oakley Law Group is to provide you with the peace of mind that comes from having a plan in place for the future, as well as a trusted advisor in times of crisis.
Nearly one in two women and one in four men find themselves in nursing homes at some point in their lives. Nursing home care is very expensive, averaging anywhere between $5,000 and $9,000 per month depending on what part of California you reside in. And contrary to what many families believe, Medicare will not pay for it. No wonder two out of three families run out of money within the first year of a prolonged nursing home stay.
Are you ready for some good news? We thought so. An experienced Elder Law attorney can help you qualify for assistance from Medi-Cal, without spending down all your income or giving up most if not all of your assets. They can also put a number of powerful legal tools to work on your behalf to prepare financially for a nursing home stay, including promissory notes, life estates, annuities and trusts, to name a few.
A Medi-Cal Crisis
A Medi-Cal crisis is generally defined as a situation where a person has already been admitted to a nursing home—or will be placed in one in the near future—and has been informed that they have too many assets to qualify for assistance from Medi-Cal. It is important for you to know that while nursing home intake staff, social workers, Medi-Cal workers and other well-meaning professionals have your best interests at heart, the information they provide you is often not entirely accurate. They simply don’t know the subtle nuances and ever-changing laws surrounding Medi-Cal eligibility. If you or someone you love is currently facing a Medi-Cal crisis situation, please contact us for a referral to experienced counsel that may be able to help. An experienced Elder Law attorney can show you a number of ways to get assistance from Medi-Cal and protect your life savings.
Applying For Medi-Cal Assistance
The best advice we can give you with regard to applying for Medi-Cal is to avoid filing on your own unless you are absolutely certain you qualify. This is because once you have applied, the number of options available to best protect your assets may be gone. If your level of wealth shows that you have more than the allowable amount, you may be required to spend-down your assets.
Applying for assistance from Medi-Cal successfully involves accurately filling out piles of paperwork and answering many confusing questions. Please call us at the Oakley Law Group before you file a Medi-Cal application and we will give you a referral to counsel who can quickly determine if it is possible to save you money. And if you have already filed and were denied benefits, don’t despair, an experienced attorney may be able to help you win an appeal.