Estate Planning Needs of the Elderly

We so often hear that hard work is the path to achieving the American dream. But retaining as much of our earnings and assets as legally allowable shortens that path. An experienced estate planning attorney can work with you to assure that your hard work results in the accumulation of assets that are protected from potential liabilities. In addition, asset protection planning can insure that tax liabilities are minimized for you and for your family after you have gone. Contact an estate planning attorney today to get started.

Wayne County Estate Planning Attorneys - Michigan Will and Trust Lawyers

Mall Malisow & Cooney, P.C.

At Mall Malisow & Cooney, P.C., our attorneys are committed to providing peace of mind for clients and families through holistic ElderCare and Estate Planning services. Only by getting to know you and your family well can we provide you with a carefully tailored estate plan, plan for ElderCare, care advocacy, or special needs planning that will provide the best possible quality of life for you and your family.

During the initial consultation you will be able to ask questions and learn about your planning options. In our experience, before you hire a lawyer it is critical for you to feel comfortable with the lawyer's expertise, office environment, and added support you will receive from the law firm's professional staff. Our commitment during your initial consultation is to provide you value and help you make informed decisions about having us become part of your team as well as to help you identify your needs and planning alternatives.

The following is intended to provide you with a general overview of estate planning issues. Contact our office to discuss your unique needs.

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Estate Planning Needs of the Elderly

Elder law deals with the legal, financial and medical needs of senior citizens. The country's average age is increasing all the time, and now even baby-boomers are dealing with health issues and legal concerns they had not anticipated. In addition to estate planning, elder law attorneys also help with preparing for long-term healthcare needs, applying for government programs, addressing financial fraud, combating physical abuse, and establishing guardianships and conservatorships. If you have elder law or estate planning-related legal questions, call Mall Malisow & Cooney, P.C. in Farmington Hills, MI, today to schedule a consultation with an estate planning lawyer.

Health Concerns, Medicare, Medicaid and Nursing Homes

When nursing home care is needed, Medicare is of only marginal assistance. Medicare helps cover inpatient care in hospitals and skilled nursing facilities, but long-term healthcare and extended time in a home is generally not covered by Medicare. The only government program that will pay for long-term care is Medicaid. Medicaid is designed to help low income people with medical bills. Medicaid will cover long-term care costs and other costs not covered by Medicare.

Unless an individual is impoverished or has adequately planned for his or her future healthcare needs, a nursing home stay or extended medical treatment can cause assets accumulated over a lifetime to be wiped out, and this could happen in a relatively short period of time. To avoid this, an estate plan can redistribute an elderly person's assets over time to reduce the assets below the amount required to qualify for Medicaid. This strategy allows an elderly person to distribute his or her assets to children or other family members so that they will not be used up to pay for healthcare expenses or nursing home costs.

Medicaid rules prevent a person from receiving benefits by transferring assets immediately before going into a nursing home. An estate planning attorney can work with you to plan ahead for residential care needs while minimizing the financial impact on your estate.


When a person's health deteriorates to the point that he or she is unable to manage his or her own affairs, state law requires the appointment of a conservator. A conservator is given the authority to make financial decisions under court supervision for a person who lacks the capacity to make those decisions for himself or herself. The costs and expenses of a conservatorship, as well as any attorneys fees, are paid by the incapacitated person's estate.

When a conservator is appointed by the court, there is no guarantee that the incapacitated person's goals and desires will be known to the conservator. A good estate plan can usually prevent a court from imposing a conservatorship. A durable power of attorney allows an individual — rather than the court — to choose a person who he or she trusts to manage financial affairs during a period of incapacity. A living will or healthcare directive can direct a healthcare professional whether to use artificial life support, and a durable healthcare power of attorney allows people to name someone they trust to make healthcare decisions in the event they are unable to make those decisions for themselves.

Contact an Estate Planning Lawyer

There are many special concerns that must be addressed when drafting an estate plan. By planning early, you often have greater flexibility to draft a plan that allows you to maintain control of your estate and your destiny when you are older. If you have questions about estate planning or need to have estate planning documents drafted, contact an estate planning attorney at Mall Malisow & Cooney, P.C. in Farmington Hills, MI, to schedule a consultation.

DISCLAIMER: This site and any information contained herein are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.

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