Categories



Medicaid’s Power to Recoup Benefits Paid: Estate Recovery and Liens

Lavelle & Finn


Federal law requires the state to attempt to recover the long-term care benefits from a Medicaid recipient’s estate after the recipient’s death. If steps aren’t taken to protect the Medicaid recipient’s house, it may need to be sold to settle the claim.  For Medicaid recipients age 55 or older, states must seek recovery of payments from the […]

What to Do If You Are Appointed Guardian of an Older Adult

Lavelle & Finn


Being appointed guardian of a loved one is a serious responsibility. As guardian, you are in charge of your loved one’s well-being and you have a duty to act in his or her best interest.   If an adult becomes mentally incapacitated and is incapable of making responsible decisions, the court will appoint a substitute […]

Don’t Let Medicare Open Enrollment Go By Without Reassessing Your Options

Lavelle & Finn


Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, during which you can freely enroll in or switch plans, runs from October 15 to December 7. Don’t let this period slip by without shopping around to see whether your current choices are the best ones for you.   During this period you may enroll in a Medicare Part D (prescription […]

The 2020 Social Security Increase Will Be Smaller than 2019’s

Lavelle & Finn


The Social Security Administration has announced a 1.6 percent increase in benefits in 2020, nearly half of last year’s change. The small rise has advocates questioning whether the government is using the proper method to calculate the cost of living for older Americans and those with disabilities. Cost-of-living increases are tied to the consumer price […]

Year-End Tax Planning

Lavelle & Finn


As the end of the year approaches, it’s time to consider strategies that could help you reduce your tax bill. But most tax tips, suggestions, and strategies are of little practical help without a good understanding of your current tax situation. This is particularly true for year-end planning. You can’t know where to go next […]

Appropriate Checklists for Year-End Tax Planning

Lavelle & Finn


What are appropriate checklists for year-end tax planning? Tax planners often develop checklists to guide taxpayers toward year-end strategies that might help reduce taxes. Typically, suggestions are grouped into several different categories, such as “Filing Status” or “Employee Matters,” for ease of reading. When year-end approaches, it might be wise to review each suggestion under […]

Accelerate Income/Postpone Deductions

Lavelle & Finn


What is accelerating income/postponing deductions? One goal of year-end tax planning is to use IRS allowances, such as deductions and exemptions, to minimize your overall tax liability. Another is to recognize income when it hurts you least. Generally, this means that you should postpone your income and accelerate your deductions. However, there are occasions when […]

Postpone Income/Accelerate Deductions

Lavelle & Finn


What is postponing income/accelerating deductions? Postponing income and accelerating deductions are two techniques commonly employed by taxpayers to minimize tax liability during the current year. These techniques are part of year-end tax planning. Your ability to utilize a deduction depends largely on when you incur the deductible expense. In many cases, you can control whether […]

How to Use a Trust in Medicaid Planning

Lavelle & Finn


With careful Medicaid planning, you may be able to preserve some of your estate for your children or other heirs while meeting Medicaid’s low asset limit. The problem with transferring assets is that you have given them away. You no longer control them, and even a trusted child or other relative may lose them. A safer […]

Most Are Taking Social Security at the Wrong Time

Lavelle & Finn


A new report finds that almost no retirees are making financially optimal decisions about when to take Social Security and are losing out on more than $100,000 per household in the process. The average Social Security recipient would receive 9 percent more income in retirement if they made the financially optimal decision. When claiming Social […]