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Guide to Elder Planning, A: Everything You Need to Know to Protect Yourself Legally and Financially

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Guide to Elder Planning, A: Everything You Need to Know to Protect Yourself Legally and Financially

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  • Copyright 2004
  • Edition: 1st
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  • ISBN-10: 0-13-142520-X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-142520-0

Let's face it... in today's world, senior citizens and their families face more complicated financial, legal and personal planning decisions than ever before--and making the wrong decisions can be catastrophic. In this book, Steven J.J. Weisman, renowned estate planning attorney and host of the nationally syndicated radio show "A Touch of Grey," offers you practical, simple guidance on every one of these issues. Written with simplicity and humor, Elder Planning uncovers strategies and loopholes for retirement, health care, long-term care, asset protection, investments, taxes, social security, housing, Medicare/Medicaid, estate planning, substitute decision, and more. This book is easy to read and easy to use, making it the indispensable resource for anyone needing to protect themselves, their parents and their heirs.

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Elder Planning: Substitute Decision Making

Table of Contents


1. Asset Protection.

Insurance. Homeowners Insurance. Credit Reports. Dog Ownership. Valuable Personal Property. Liability Insurance. Prenuptial Agreements. History. Enforcement. Allowable Provisions. Medicaid Implications. Bank Accounts. Trusts. Safeguards for Trusts. Qualified Terminable Interest Trust. Offshore Trusts. Homestead Protection. Fraudulent Conveyances. Assets Protected by Law. Joint Ownership. Tenancy by the Entirety. Family Limited Partnerships. Establishment of the Partnership. Protection of the Partnership's Assets. Endnotes.

2. Senior Citizens and Credit.

Equal Credit Opportunity Act. Credit Reports. Credit Bureaus and Your FICO Score. Credit Report Error Correction. Credit Cards.

3.Substitute Decision Making.

Power of Attorney. Durable Power of Attorney. Terminology. Provisions. Attorney-in-Fact. You and Will Robinson. Danger, Will Robinson! Danger, Will Robinson!Danger! Oh, Will Robinson!Even More Danger! IRS Dangers. Health Care Proxy. The Law. The Trusted Ones. Free Advice (and Worth Every Penny).

4. Estate Planning.

Wills. Choosing an Executor. Erasing Battle Lines. Letting the State Decide. Doing It Yourself. Living Trusts. Deciding on a Living Revocable Trust. Choosing a Trustee. Choosing a Trust Protector. Incentive Trusts. Estate Taxes. The Credit Shelter Trust. Applying an Example. Using a Disclaimer. State Estate Taxes. Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts. Charitable Remainder Trust. Defective Trusts. Section 529 Plans. Planning for Your Pets. POD Accounts. Second Marriages. Estate Planning for Unmarried Couples. Now That You Have a Plan.

5. Investments.

Mutual Funds. Fees and Charges. Types of Mutual Funds. Mutual Funds and Taxes. DRIPs. Certificates of Deposit. Treasuries. Taxes on Treasuries. Purchase of Treasuries. Comparison of Treasury Notes and Bills. Treasury Inflation-Indexed Securities. U.S. Savings Bonds. Annuities. Your Stock Portfolio. Dow Jones Industrial Average. What Should Be in Your Portfolio? Rules of Thumb. The Stocks Portion of Your Portfolio. Some Final Thoughts. Endnotes.

6. Income Taxes.

Marital Status. “Single” Category. “Married, Filing Jointly” Category. “Married, Filing Separately” Category. “Head of Household” Category. Parents and Children. Domestic Partners. The Over-65 Crowd. Untaxed Income. Tax Credits. Social Security Taxes. Tax Deductions. Loan Interest. “Normal” Medical Expenses. Off-Beat Medical Expenses. Home Improvement Medical Expenses. Deduction Documentation. Tax Relief as Big as a House. Reduced Exclusion. Basis for Exclusion. Now That You Have Prepared Your Taxes, What Documents Do You Keep? Some Final Words from Deep in the Heart of Taxes. Endnote.

7. Individual Retirement Accounts.

Traditional IRA. Roth IRA. Decisions, Decisions. The Different Path. Beneficiary Designation. Keeping It Current. Keeping It Handy. Keeping It in the Family. Conversion to a Roth IRA. Distribution. Withdrawal Pains. Early and Late Withdrawals. A Painless Withdrawal. Survivors. Disclaimers. Opportunities.

8. Planning for the Home.

Reverse Mortgages. FHA-Insured Reverse Mortgage. Lender-Insured Reverse Mortgage. Uninsured Reverse Mortgage. Odds and Ends. Mortgage Prepayment. Private Mortgage Insurance. Refinancing. Life Estates. Sell the Home to the Children.

9. Alternative Housing.

Retirement Communities. Continuing Care Retirement Communities. Money Matters. Contracts. Important Considerations in Evaluating a Continuing Care Retirement Community. Assisted Living. Legalities. Important Considerations in Evaluating an Assisted Living Facility. Endnote.

10. Long-Term Care.

History. Cost of Long-Term Care. Future Cost of Long-Term Care. Financing Long-Term Care. Your Home. Life Insurance. Long-Term Care Insurance. Eligibility for Long-Term Care Insurance. Choosing a Company. Agent or Independent Broker. Application Process. Length of Coverage. Waiting Period. Inflation Protection. Waiver of Premium. Home Care. Nonforfeiture. Renewability. Triggers for Benefits. Make the Kids Pay. Endnotes.

11. Social Security.

History. Eligibility and Benefit Calculations. Full Retirement Age. Early or Late Retirement. Early Retirement. Delayed Retirement. COLAs. Social Security Disability Income. Survivor's Benefits. Notch Babies. Getting a Copy of Your Record. Overpayments. Medicare and Your Application for Social Security Benefits. Endnote.

12. Medicare.

The Medicare Alphabet. History. Medicare A. Medicare B. Medicare C. Managed Care. Premiums. Enrollment. Medigap Insurance. Appeals. Endnote.

13. Medicaid.

Overview. Asset Eligibility. Transfer Penalty. Exceptions to Transfer Penalties. Consideration of Income. Protection from Spousal Impoverishment. Medicaid Planning. Just Say No. Estate Planning for the Community Spouse. Estate and Financial Planning for the Spouse in the Nursing Home. Tactics for Reducing Assets without a Medicaid Penalty, or Loopholes 101. Early Planning: Personal Care Contract. Too Late Planning: Divorce. Half-a-Loaf Giving. Trusts. Protecting the Home. Tactics for Increasing Assets to Achieve a Greater Spousal Resource Allowance, or Loopholes 102. Annuities. Estate Recovery. The Latest Information.

14. Being Patient.

Privacy and Medical Records. Access to Medical Records—by You and Others.

15. Scams.

Identity Theft. Sham Tax Forms. Phony Prizes. Slavery Reparations. IRS Impersonators. Credit Card Protection. Chain Letters. Social Security Scam. Pyramid Schemes. Cramming. Credit Repair Services. Travel Fraud. Reloading. A Final Bit of Advice.

16. End-of-Life Issues.

Health Care Proxy. Hospice Care. Organ Donation. Durable Power of Attorney. Beneficiary Designations. Monetary Needs. Wills. Planning Your Funeral. Wills to Live By.

17. Favorite Websites.

State Income Tax Deductibility Of Section 529 Plans.

Forms 241

Glossary 245

Index 255


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