The Livens Law Firm

December 2015 Archives

Plan now with a will, powers of attorney, trusts and directives

Statistics applicable to Texas and nationwide say that only half of the Baby Boomers generation have made a will. In that respect, many of us have to admit that we are sometimes "penny-wise and pound-poor." Thus, saving the relatively modest expenses of preparing an estate plan and making a will can possibly result in unwanted consequences to our heirs.

70 percent of retirees will need long-term care at some time

There are two dramatic statistics that stand out on the subject of elderly planning. First, according to the Long Term Care Group, the average annual cost of a room in a skilled nursing home was $97, 611 in 2014, and it could have been as much as $147,982. Secondly, about 70 percent of people 65 years old and older will need some kind of long-term care. Whether a person lives in Texas or another state, the only reasonably practical way to protect against losing all of one's assets to long-term care costs is to plan and start an aggressive elder law plan as early as possible.

Planning may stop long-term care costs from erasing life savings

According to the National Health Policy Forum, the annual cost of nursing home care in 2012 was between $81,000 and $90,000. Assisted living facilities cost an average of $42,000. Most retired Americans, including those in Texas, cannot afford to finance such high costs of long-term care. In fact, it is regularly reported that many retired persons have had their relatively modest life savings eaten up by long-term care costs.

With planning, an estate may be exempt from the probate process

Probate takes place after the individual is deceased. It entails a situation where the decedent had sufficient assets in his or her name to qualify for the necessity of court administration of those assets pursuant to law. In Texas and other states, probate involves the appointment of a representative to administer the estate on behalf of the decedent. This can be the person appointed in a will or it may be a person who applies to the court where there is no will.

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