Categories



Reports Find Hospice Deficiencies Go Unaddressed

Lavelle & Finn


Hospice care is supposed to help terminally ill patients maintain their quality of life at the end of their life, but two new government reports find that serious problems in some hospices may be actually causing harm to patients. The reports go on to say that additional safeguards are needed. Medicare provides a comprehensive hospice benefit that […]

Should You Sell Your Life Insurance Policy?

Lavelle & Finn


Older Americans with a life insurance policy that they no longer need have the option to sell the policy to investors. These transactions, called “life settlements,” can bring in needed cash, but are they a good idea? If your children are grown and your mortgage paid off, you may decide that there is no longer […]

How Gifts Can Affect Medicaid Eligibility

Lavelle & Finn


We’ve all heard that it’s better to give than to receive, but if you think you might someday apply for Medicaid long-term care benefits, you need to be careful; giving away money or property can interfere with your eligibility. Under federal Medicaid law, if you transfer certain assets within five years before applying for Medicaid, […]

Medicare Launches App to Help Beneficiaries Find Out What’s Covered

Lavelle & Finn


At the doctor’s office and want to know if a procedure is covered by Medicare? There’s an app for that. Medicare has launched a free app that gives beneficiaries a quick way to see whether the program covers a specific medical item or service. The “What’s Covered” app allows you to search or browse to […]

How to Plan Your Funeral

Lavelle & Finn


Thinking about your funeral may not be fun, but planning ahead lets your family know your wishes and provides guidance during a stressful time. Here are some steps you can take to help formulate your plan. Name who is in charge. The first step is to designate someone to make funeral arrangements for you. State law dictates […]

A Final Retirement Account Distribution Must Still Be Made After Death

Lavelle & Finn


Federal law requires that beginning on April 1 of the year after you reach age 70 1/2, you must begin withdrawing a minimum amount from your non-Roth individual retirement account (IRA) or 401(k) accounts. These withdrawals are called required minimum distributions (RMDs). But what if you die after age 70 1/2 and before all the account […]

Protecting Your House from Medicaid Estate Recovery

Lavelle & Finn


After a Medicaid recipient dies, the state must attempt to recoup from his or her estate whatever benefits it paid for the recipient’s care. This is called “estate recovery.” For most Medicaid recipients, their house is the only asset available, but there are steps you can take to protect your home.   Life estates For […]

Tips on Creating an Estate Plan that Benefits a Child with Special Needs

Lavelle & Finn


Parents want their children to be taken care of after they die. Children with disabilities, however, have increased financial and care needs that can make planning for their long-term welfare tricky. Proper planning by parents is necessary to benefit the child with a disability, including an adult child, as well as assist any siblings who […]

Maximizing Social Security Survivor’s Benefits

Lavelle & Finn


Social Security survivor’s benefits provide a safety net to widows and widowers. But to get the most out of the benefit, you need to know the right time to claim. While you can claim survivor’s benefits as early as age 60, if you claim benefits before your full retirement age, your benefits will be permanently […]

Medicare’s Different Treatment of the Two Main Post-Hospital Care Options

Lavelle & Finn


Hospital patients who need additional care after being discharged from the hospital are usually sent to either an inpatient rehabilitation facility (IRF) or a skilled nursing facility (SNF). Although these facilities may look similar from the outside, Medicare offers very different coverage for each. While you may not have complete say in where you go […]