A Long-Term Estate Planning Guide in Columbus is more than just passing on your money after you die. It involves creating a plan. It involves creating a plan for managing your assets while you’re alive, distributing them when you die, and protecting your family even after you’re gone. If you live in Ohio, it’s essential to understand the state’s Medicaid program. Many people don’t realize that health insurance and Medicare don’t cover long-term care costs. This means middle-class seniors often have to use their life savings to pay for such care. The rules surrounding Medicaid in Ohio are complex and have recently changed.
Long-Term Estate Planning in Ohio Care Planning Guide 2023
Long-term care planning is an essential part of estate planning, especially in Ohio, where the Medicaid asset limits are relatively low. Medicaid is a government health insurance program that can help pay for long-term care costs, such as nursing home care or assisted living. However, to qualify for Medicaid, you must have limited assets.
In Ohio, a single person may have no more than $2,000 of total assets to qualify for Medicaid. If married, your spouse may have up to $148,620 of assets. Any holdings over these limits will make you ineligible for Medicaid.
If you are concerned about having to pay for long-term care costs, there are a few things you can do to protect your assets. Another option is to engage in Medicaid planning. Medicaid planning involves using legal strategies to reduce your assets to below the Medicaid asset limits. This can be a complex process, so it is essential to consult with an experienced elder law attorney.
Here are some of the most common Medicaid planning strategies:
1) Gift assets to family members or friends. You can gift assets to family members or friends, but there is a five-year look-back period. This means that Medicaid will look back at all gifts you made in the five years before you applied for Medicaid. If you gave away any assets during this period, Medicaid may delay your eligibility for Medicaid.
2) Establish an irrevocable trust. An irrevocable trust is a type of trust that cannot be changed or revoked once it is established. You can transfer assets to an irrevocable trust, and Medicaid will not be able to count them toward your asset limits.
3) Purchase a qualified annuity. A qualified annuity is a type of annuity that can be used to protect assets from Medicaid. When you purchase a qualified annuity, you transfer assets to the insurance company for a guaranteed income stream. The income stream is exempt from the Medicaid asset limits.
Don’t let the costs of long-term care force you to give up your home and hard-earned savings.
A special needs trust is designed to enhance the quality of life for disabled individuals while also preserving any government benefits, they may be receiving. This four-page guide will give you a general understanding of the various types of special needs trusts, disbursements, rules, types of income, and more. At Rathburn & Associates in Columbus, we pride ourselves on using our knowledge and expertise to offer the best advice on protecting your loved ones. Contact us today to schedule a free personal consultation and explore the special needs planning options available.
Special Needs Trust Guide Ohio
A special needs trust (SNT) is a legal document that allows a person with disabilities to receive supplemental funds without losing their eligibility for government benefits. SNTs can be used to pay for various expenses, such as medical care, education, and housing. In Ohio, there are two types of SNTs: first party SNTs and third-party SNTs.
First-party SNTs are created and funded by the person with disabilities themselves. The assets in a first party SNT are considered countable resources for Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) purposes. This means that the person with disabilities may lose their eligibility for these benefits if the assets in the trust exceed the Medicaid and SSI asset limits.
Third-party SNTs are created and funded by someone other than a person with disabilities, such as a parent, grandparent, or friend. The assets in a third-party SNT are not considered countable resources for Medicaid and SSI purposes. This means that the person with disabilities can receive funds from the trust without losing their eligibility for these benefits. To establish an SNT in Ohio, you will need to work with an attorney in Columbus near you who specializes in estate planning and elder law. The attorney will help you create a trust document that meets your needs and ensures that the trust complies with all applicable laws.
Here are some of the benefits of establishing an SNT in Ohio:
- SNTs can help people with disabilities maintain their eligibility for government benefits.
- SNTs can be used to provide supplemental funds for various expenses, such as medical care, education, and housing.
- SNTs can help to ensure that people with disabilities have access to the care and support they need.
If you are considering establishing an SNT in Ohio, it is essential to consult with an experienced attorney to discuss your specific needs and options.
Here are some additional resources for information about SNTs in Ohio:
- Ohio Bar Association: Special Needs Trusts
- Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities: Special Needs Trusts
- National Disability Institute: Special Needs Trusts
Top Reasons for Estate Planning
Here are some of the top reasons for estate planning:
1) To ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes. Without a will or other estate planning documents, your assets will be distributed according to state law, which may not be what you want.
2) To protect your minor children. If you have little children, you need to appoint a guardian who will care for them if you die or become incapacitated. You can also use estate planning tools to provide financial support for your children until they reach adulthood.
3) To reduce the tax burden on your heirs. Estate planning can reduce the amount of estate taxes that your heirs will owe.
4) To plan for long-term care costs. Long-term care can be costly, and Medicare does not cover it. Estate planning can protect your assets so that you can afford long-term care if you need it.
5) To avoid family disputes. Estate planning can help to prevent disputes among your loved ones after you die. By clearly stating your wishes in your estate planning documents, you can ensure that your assets are distributed smoothly and fairly.
6) Estate planning is essential for everyone, regardless of age or wealth. If you still need to create an estate plan, it is essential to do so as soon as possible. You can consult with an estate planning attorney to help you create a plan that meets your specific needs.