Louisiana Usufruct and Naked Ownership – The Basics

Usufruct and naked ownership are common provisions in estate plans of Louisiana residents. Other states have similar concepts – life estates and remaindermen; however, usufruct and naked ownership are unique civil law concepts. Many estate plans in Louisiana utilize usufruct and naked ownership when distributing property to their spouse and or descendants. Unfortunately, many Louisiana residents often are unfamiliar with usufruct and naked ownership and how these concepts work in the context of an overall estate plan. When a person owns property in full ownership, they have the right of possession; the income derived from it; the right to sell,
Read More

Veterans Disability 2015 Pension Update

The Veterans Administration recently updated its rates for Pension benefits for wartime veterans and surviving spouses of wartime veterans. VA Disability Pension (which includes Aid and Attendance) is a benefit paid to wartime veterans who have limited or no income, and who are age 65 or older, or, if under 65, who are permanently and totally disabled due to non-service-connected conditions. Veterans who are more seriously disablJohn’s websiteed may qualify for increased benefits based on Aid and Attendance or being Housebound. Housebound benefits provide a lower monthly payment than Aid and Attendance benefits. These benefits are also available to a
Read More

Considerations When Selecting a Nursing Home for a Loved One

Selecting a Nursing Home for a Loved One The choice of nursing home that is the best option for a loved one is often a difficult one.  Many factors come into play when considering a nursing home. The choice of nursing home should not be taken lightly as it will impact your loved one’s quality of life, health and safety. The care needs of your loved one is a primary consideration. You should consider the level of care and the medical needs of the person. The nursing home should have properly trained staff and equipment to provide a safe environment
Read More

2015 Louisiana Medicaid Long-Term Care Income and Resource Update

The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals recently updated the maximum Community Spouse Resource Allowance and the Minimum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance for spouses of Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits. To qualify for Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits a single person can have no more than $2,000 of countable resources. Married couples both receiving Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits cannot have combined countable resources in excess of $3,000. These amount have not increased from 2014. The spouse of a Medicaid Long-Term Care recipient who lives at home (known as the community spouse) is allowed to retain additional resources and income. These amounts are
Read More

Level of Care Options For Seniors

One of the greatest concerns for retirees and the elderly we serve is that of long term care.  Approximately, two-thirds of seniors will need long-term care at some point in their life and many have not planned for this likelihood. For many it is an emotional and unpleasant topic to broach, but planning ahead provides choices and helps mitigate the devastating financial effects of long-term care expenses. Planning ahead also helps people avoid making bad decisions during more stressful times when health has already declined to the point of needing assistance. This blog post will focus on long-term care options
Read More

Dealing with the Financial and Emotional Costs of Dementia

Dealing with the Financial and Emotional Costs of Dementia The Alzheimer’s Association defines dementia as, “a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life. Memory loss is an example. Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia.” In fact, Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60 to 80 percent of dementia cases. Dementia is not a specific disease; rather, it describes a general decline in memory or other thinking skills and is identified through a variety of symptoms. Cost to the Individual The cost to the individual diagnosed with dementia is difficult to quantify. Typically,
Read More

Protecting Your Children and Grandchildren with Trusts

Trusts are very important tools available to estate planning attorneys. A standalone trust or a trust incorporated into a will allows you to leave assets with “strings attached” for the benefit of a loved one. For example, you may think it is unwise to allow a child or grandchild unrestricted access to their inheritance at age 18. You may feel that your child or grandchild may not make good choices at a young age. In many situations clients with children or grandchildren in their 30s, 40s or 50s need the protection provided by a trust. They may need protection from
Read More