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Barrington IL Elder Law Attorneys

barrington elder law attorney

Lawyer Experienced in Elder Law Matters for Clients in Inverness, Palatine, Cary, and Throughout the Area

The U.S Census Bureau estimates the Illinois population as roughly 12.8 million. Approximately 4 million of the population is over 60 years old. We are experiencing a surge from the "baby boomers" entering retirement, coupled with people living longer. In 1990, the average life expectancy was about 75 years and has since risen to approximately 79 years. Therefore, the need for legal representation among the elderly will be in demand. For three decades, the attorneys at Joseph M. Lucas & Associates, LLC have been practicing law involved in long-term care planning, wills, trusts, special needs trusts, guardianship, probate, and others.

Long-Term Care

The long-term care market, which includes facilities such as nursing homes, are subject to a set of standards from both the federal and state governments. The federal code establishes the laws for compliance according to Medicare and Medicaid. Further, the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act is in place which outlines a wide range of rights for those in long-term care facilities. An elder law attorney can address potential concerns such as abuse or neglect and also review contracts with nursing homes and for long-term care insurance.

Medicaid

Medicaid is a national program with bureaucratic complexity that may require careful planning. It is best to begin reviewing the current requirements several years prior to when you will actually be in need of Medicaid benefits. An attorney who is knowledgeable about the program can evaluate a plan to protect your home and assets from Medicaid liens. Often a "spenddown" is determined to be a necessary financial strategy. This is based on a fixed amount designated each month for medical or nursing home costs that are reflective of your assets and income. The Illinois Healthcare and Family Services Spenddown Program may be a consideration for acceleration of the transfer of assets.

Estate Planning

  • Wills: It is important to draft and maintain a document indicating your intentions for passing along you assets and property. In the absence of a will, the distribution of your assets could be left for probate to decide.
  • Trusts: One advantage with establishing a trust is that it allows your family to bypass the need for probate. This is when a grantor assigns a trustee to oversee the management of the trust for the ultimate benefit of the beneficiaries. Trusts may be revocable, meaning able to be modified and changed, or irrevocable.
  • Power of Attorney: In the event that you are incapacitated, such as from an accident or illness, this allows for an agent to act on your behalf for critical financial matters and healthcare decisions.

Probate and Estate Administration

Probate confirms the validity of a will for a deceased individual and facilitates the process of your executor or administrator's distribution of assets to beneficiaries. The probate process begins after the death of the individual and involves sending out legal notices, gathering an estate inventory, selling and transferring assets and more. Your estate should be administered by an experienced attorney who is familiar with issues such as estate tax law and asset preservation.

Are you in the DuPage County area and wish to develop an effective plan for issues such as protecting the assets of an estate, managing long-term care costs, trusts, and wills? Contact the law firm of Joseph M. Lucas & Associates, LLC today at 847-381-8700 to speak with one of our attorneys who can assist you with customized solutions for the many aspects of elder law. We serve clients in Barrington, Inverness, Algonquin, Palatine, Cary, Fox River Grove, Kildeer, Wauconda, Island Lake, Lake Zurich, Tower Lakes, Hawthorn Woods, and throughout the area.

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