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Caring for Aging Parents During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Caring for Aging Parents During the Coronavirus Pandemic

At Nadler Biernath, many of our clients are in the “sandwich generation.” Folks are caring for aging parents and young children. As we all work to process the ever-changing news and deluge of information about COVID-19, one thing is clear: Older adults are at higher risk for severe illness. For those with aging parents, this can be unsettling. Below, you’ll find some information we’ve compiled to help keep you and your loved ones healthy and connected during this time of uncertainty.

Keep Yourself Healthy
If you’ll be providing care for a high-risk parent, it’s important to keep yourself healthy. The World Health Organization recommends you:

  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Maintain social distancing
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Follow respiratory hygiene by covering your cough or sneeze with a bent elbow or tissue you then dispose of
  • Call a medical provider if you have a fever, cough or difficulty breathing

Pay attention to your mental health, too! Connect with friends virtually and enjoy time with your family, while finding space for yourself as well.

Caring for Your Parents
Your COVID-19 plan for your parents will likely have much to do with their living situation and required level of care.

If your parent lives independently, offer to handle the grocery shopping. Time created an expert-driven roundup on how to safely shop for and handle your food. Encourage your parent to practice social distancing. Routine can be difficult to break, so parents may need regular reminders not to go to a grocery store, drug store or keep social engagements. And, as hard as it is for everyone, if you have young kids, it’s safest to avoid in-person interactions for now. While we should all socially distance ourselves, we don’t have to be isolated, thanks to our age of technology. Encourage your parent to use the phone or computer and reach out to friends and family.

If your parent lives in an assisted living facility or nursing home, follow the facility’s guidelines regarding visitors. For the safety of all residents, many facilities are not allowing visitors. If visitors are not allowed, make sure you understand the facility’s emergency plan and how you’ll stay updated on your parent’s health. Find out if regular doctor visits can be performed via telemedicine. Some facilities will also allow a “window visit,” if your parent’s room is on the ground floor.

If your parent lives with you, set up a household self-quarantine. Regularly disinfect high-touch surfaces in the home, like doorknobs, sinks and light switches.

If your parent has dementia, know the likely signs of illness—often increased confusion. Support personal hygiene, and consider making written reminders to wash hands. If your parent has an in-home caregiver, have a plan for backup care. Remind the caregiver to wash hands upon entering your home.

Using Technology to Stay Connected
With limited visits or even self-isolation, you’ll want to make sure that your older loved ones are also staying mentally healthy. The CDC recommends taking breaks from the news, moving your body and staying connected. Organize a video call for your family. Have your parents and kids read books together over the phone. Set a time to watch a favorite show together, then talk it over the next day. While it’s not the same as being together, you may find new ways to connect.

Speak With an Atlanta Elder Law Lawyer
Planning is more important than ever right now. At Nadler Biernath, we’re happy to be able to support families as they navigate this ongoing crisis. We have experience handling all aspects of estate planning and elder law. Call us today at 770-999-9799 to schedule your initial consultation (conducted virtually) to discuss how we can help your loved ones. Stay safe and healthy!

By | 2020-03-31T11:41:37+00:00 March 31st, 2020|Uncategorized|0 Comments

A Message from Nadler Biernath on the Coronavirus/COVID-19 

A Message from Nadler Biernath
on the Coronavirus/COVID-19

Dear clients and friends,

During this challenging time, we’d like to take a moment to update you all on our office and the work we’re continuing to do. We have closed down our office to keep you and our staff safe. Moving forward, all March and April meetings will be virtual. Also, we are delaying signings—which are required to take place in person.

We also believe that planning is more important than ever right now. While we can’t control many of the outside circumstances we’re all facing, Nadler Biernath can help give you peace of mind. Now is a good time to get your estate planning started and be sure that your older or special needs loved ones are cared for.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be taking a closer look at some topics we hope will support our clients during this time:

  • Caring for aging parents during the coronavirus pandemic
  • Dealing with not being able to visit elderly family members
  • Helping special needs kids deal with schedule and routine changes
  • Supporting special needs parents

We’re working hard to support the elder and special needs communities at this time. We’ll continue to communicate information, share resources and keep clients up-to-date — stay tuned.

By | 2020-03-27T14:37:20+00:00 March 24th, 2020|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Estate Planning For Families With A Special Needs Child Business Radio X

Estate Planning For Families With A Special Needs Child Business Radio X

Nadler Biernath attorney Kim Martin had the privilege of appearing on Gaslowitz Frankel’s Wealth Matters radio show, discussing how to estate plan when you have a special needs child. It was a great conversation, and if you weren’t able to listen live, you can watch the show on YouTube, or listen through Business Radio X’s website. Click to view the video on YouTube below, and be sure to read more on our FAQ’s page and within the Special Needs Planning Section of our website.

 

Veteran’s Benefits Qualifiers

Veteran’s Benefits Qualifiers

How do we know if we qualify? The veteran has to be enlisted for at least 90 days of active duty, that is important to realize, this is not the reserves this is active duty. You have to have 90 days of active enlistment; one of those has to have been during a war time period. In Herschel’s case, he was in Korea. So let’s say, for instance, you’ve got 90 days of enlistment and the va sets their war time dates, and these dates might be a little surprising, they are a little broader than what you might think. So don’t just automatically discount and say, “Oh, well it was around Korea but it right as it was ending.” or “right after World War II”, especially the World War II, the end date on that is what a lot us would not think what that is. So definitely take a look and see, well you can just google, “va Aid and Attendance war time dates” and find out what those are, so don’t discount that. Only one day, so 90 days is your total enlistment, only one of those days has to have fallen during a war time period. So, you can get in there by the skin of your teeth by one day, potentially, of war time service. Other important thing to realize is it doesn’t mean that the person was on the beaches of Normandy, they could have been sitting behind a desk at Devens. If they were enlisted on active duty during a war time period, that counts, you didn’t have to be holding guns and shooting people. You have to have other then dishonorable discharge. Before I started doing this work I didn’t realize there was anything that was, it was honorable or dishonorable, but there’s some grey area, as long as it’s not dishonorable you’re ok. There must be limited income and assets and it’s kind of a moving target of $80,000 in resources, I’m going to come back to that in just a second. There must be a permanent and total disability of the veteran at the time of the application. Over 65, you are presumed disabled. So, if you’re client, we’re not going to for any of us, but if the client is over 65 years of age, you’re presumed permanently disability, same for Medicaid, all you’ve got to do is prove your age and you’re good to go. And the disability has to be caused without the willful misconduct of the claimant, so if someone is drunk and falls and gets a concussion, now needs Aid and Attendance, “Sorry, that was your own willful misconduct”, so there’s the example on that. Income limits, the allowable income limit will vary by benefit program, it varies whether you’re going for that Low Income Pension, the Homebound, or the Aid and Attendance; but we’re looking just here on the Aid and Attendance. The important thing to realize on va benefits, is they consider your income to be the amount of your gross income after subtracting all your medical expenses, so that’s why this quote unquote works. So when we’re looking at income for purposes of va, let’s say I have $2,000 a month in income but I am paying the average $4,000 a month to the assisted living. So, the va then says that I have negative $2,000 a month in income. That’s their baseline determination in looking at income, they don’t say, “Heather has $2,000 a month in income”, they say, “Heather’s income is defined as her income after all medical expenses are backed out”, so I have negative income. As long as I fall in to that negative income category, I can get va Aid and Attendance benefits. Depending on how negative that number ends up being, it determines the amount that I can get. Those other figures that we had, so say for the couple that was $2,054 a month, if we take their income and subtract out their medical expenses and then it turns out that their negative is only $1,000 a month, they’re only going to get $1,000 a month benefit. So, va says, “You pay what you can pay and then we will help you make up the difference but only to a certain amount”. Put all that back together again, let’s say I’m a widow and I have $2,000 a month in income and I am paying $4,000 a month for assisted living, my income is negative $2,000 but the only va benefit available to me, the maximum benefit is $1,113, so that’s all I’m going to get. I’m still going to have some sort of short fall there, va doesn’t just step in and say, ”You pay what you can pay and we will make up the difference no matter how much it is”, they say, “You pay what you can pay and then we will make up the difference up to this figure”, so that’s how it works. As you can see, the kind of things that count for medical expenses, it’s not just the assisted living because we might have somebody who has $3,000 a month in income and the assisted living is $4,000 a month, so we’ve only got a $1,000 shortfall. But by time you deduct not just the assisted living, you can deduct all of these other things too. They have to be recurring medical expenses; so the big ones are prescriptions, incontinence fees, the medical premiums, that Medicare premium that gets withheld from Social Security as well as the Medicare supplement, both of those will count. So if you got someone who’s close, don’t forget to add in these other things too.

By | 2018-11-02T13:59:15+00:00 November 2nd, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments