Call Today For Your FREE Initial Conference!

DRASTIC CHANGES TO VETERANS PENSION BENEFITS COMING OCTOBER 18, 2018

Veterans BenefitsOn, September 18th, 2018, the Veterans Administration (VA) released the long anticipated updated VA regulations regarding Veterans Pension Benefits.

On October 18, 2018, new rules will go into effect that will make qualifying for the Pension Benefit (also known as “Aid and Attendance”) very challenging. The Pension Benefit helps pay for un-reimbursed medical expenses (not covered by Medicare or a Medicare Supplement) for Veterans and their surviving spouse.  The new regulations will make this benefit available to fewer Veterans and/or their spouses.

If you are a Veteran or the surviving spouse of a Veteran:

    • Who served in ACTIVE (not reserve) duty during any of these periods of war:
      • World War II – December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946
      • Korean War – June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955
      • Vietnam War – February 28, 1961 if Served in Vietnam or August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975
      • Persian Gulf War – August 2, 1990 continues through today
    • And you feel you may need assistance with dressing, bathing, getting in and out of a bed or chair, feeding or toileting within the next 3 years…

It is in your best interest to call us IMMEDIATELY!

We are alerting you to these changes so that you may have an opportunity to create a trust and transfer assets into the trust BEFORE the new regulations are put into place, thereby, avoiding the new restrictions.

A VERY LIMITED NUMBER OF TRUSTS CAN BE COMPLETED BEFORE THE CHANGES TAKE EFFECT!

A VERY LIMITED NUMBER of Veteran Trusts can realistically be completed due to the need for an initial conference, designing the trust, signing the trust, and for you to have time to transfer your assets into the name of the trust before the rules change and these horrible new regulations go into place.

THE NEW REGULATIONS ARE LIFE CHANGING!

Please understand we are not trying to “drum up business.”  What we are trying to do is WARN people we have previously talked to that did not want to set up a Veteran Trust in the past because they felt they had time.  We want you to know and understand TIME is RUNNING OUT!   There is no longer the possibility of waiting to set up a trust until you or your loved ones needs care!  We have special relationships with our Veteran clients and we have always been advocates for Veterans to get the benefits they deserve.

The same thing happened in 2008 when Medicaid regulations became more restrictive.  Those who acted QUICKLY were able to save tens of thousands, sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Setting up a Veteran Trust NOW could mean the difference between having enough money to afford assisted living instead of moving to a nursing home.

DON’T DELAY!

Call Vouga Elder Law & Estate Planning TODAY at 636-394-0009 to schedule

 

 

VA News – NEW Presumptive Conditions for Camp Lejeune

Washington- The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has published regulations to establish presumptions for the service connection of eight diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

The presumption of service connection applies to active duty, reserve and National Guard members who served at Camp Lejeune for a minimum of 30 days (cumulative) between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987, and are diagnosed with any of the following conditions:

  • Adult leukemia
  • Aplastic anemia/other myelodysplastic syndromes
  • Bladder, kidney or liver cancer
  • Multipole myeloma
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Parkinson’s disease

“We have a responsibility to take care of those who have served our Nation and have been exposed to harm as a result of that service,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald.  “Establishing a presumption for service at Camp Lejeune will make it easier on those Veterans to receive the care and benefits they earned.”

Environmental health experts in VA’s Technical Workgroup conducted comprehensive reviews of scientific evidence, which included analysis and research done by the Department of Health and Human Service’s Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), the Environmental Protection Agency, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the National Toxicology Program, and the National Academies of Science.

Veterans with 30 or more cumulative days of active duty service, at Camp Lejeune during the contamination period are already eligible for certain medical benefits, following passage of the Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012.

In the early 1980’s volatile organic compounds, trichloroethylene (TCE), a metal degreaser, and perchloroethylene (PCE), a dry cleaning agent, as well as benzene and vinyl chloride, were discovered in two on-base water supply systems at Camp Lejeune.  The contaminated wells supplying the water systems were shut down in February 1985.

This area included in this presumption is all of Camp Lejeune and MCAS New River, including satellite camps and housing areas.

The rule will be effective either 60 days after publication in the Federal Register, or following conclusion of the 60-day Congressional Review, whichever is later.

If you or a loved one was at Camp Lejeune during those dates or have more questions, please call us to set up an appointment at 636-394-0009

 

Save

May is National Elder Law Month!

Many people prepare for death by having a Will or Trust drawn up.  But the real question is,

“What if I don’t die, but get sick and need care?”

Are you, your family and your assets  protected? Come to one of our free workshops and learn what can  happen to you or your clients if you aren’t prepared.

We always encourage people to “get there ducks in a row” and make sure all of their legal documents are up to date and work for each individual’s Elder Care Journey.  We believe above all other legal documents you need to make sure you have The 3 Most Important Documents. That includes a Durable Power of Attorney, a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care and HIPAA documents.

Call us today at 636-394-0009 to register for a workshop or to learn more, or if you would like to learn more about the Elder Care Journey or The 3 Most Important Documents.

 

January Resolutions

January is a great time to set resolutions for weight loss, exercising and eating better, and spending more time with your loved ones.  It is also a great time to think about those things which we tend to “put off” like estate planning.

No one wakes up and says, “I think I will have a heart attack and die today.”  Or “I think I will have a stroke today and need care for the rest of my life.”

Being prepared gives you and your family the most options to protect yourself, your family and your assets.  Make January or February your time to take control of YOUR estate plan. Make you sure you are PREPARED.

Call today 636-394-0009 to attend on of our FREE Workshops on February 18th at 10:00 a.m. or February 23rd at 6:30 p.m. or you can view all of our upcoming workshops and sign up through our Events page.

Drastic and Harsh Regulations coming to Veterans Benefits

VA BENEFIT NOTICE!

NEW VA REGULATIONS WILL SOON BE IMPLEMENTED THAT WILL MAKE QUALIFYING FOR VA BENEFITS VERY CHALLENGING!

In the next couple of months, new rules are going to be implemented by the Veterans Administration that will make qualifying for the Non-Service Connected benefit (also known as “Aid and Attendance”) very challenging.                      

The Pension Benefit helps pay for unreimbursed medical expenses (not covered by Medicare or a Medicare Supplement) for Veterans and their surviving spouse.  The new regulations will make this benefit available to fewer Veterans and/or their spouses.

ANY VETERAN OR SURVIVING SPOUSE WHO BELIEVES
THEY WILL BE IN NEED OF CARE WITHIN THE NEXT THREE YEARS
MUST ACT QUICKLY.

For the first time, specific asset limitations for qualifying will be put in place. Under the new proposed regulations, a limit of $119,220 of ASSETS AND INCOME for either a married couple or single individual will be allowed.  While your house will continue to not be a countable asset, there will now be a TWO ACRES LIMIT on the acreage your home.  If you live on a farm or a large tract of land, this will be a huge challenge for you to receive the Pension Benefit!

The regulations will also establish a three-year look-back provision and “transfer penalty” similar to Medicaid.  Currently, if the Veteran Administration says you have to many assets to qualify for the Pension Benefit, it is an easy fix to set up a “Veterans Trust”, transfer the assets into the trust, and you will immediately qualify for the Pension Benefit.  Under the new regulations, Veterans or their surviving spouse who transfer assets within three years of applying for benefits will be subject to a “penalty period” that can last as long as TEN YEARS.

There is a complex calculation to determine the penalty period.  However, the penalty period for a surviving spouse would be almost TWICE as long as the penalty period for a Veteran who transfers the same amount of assets into a trust.

THE  REGULATIONS COULD TAKE AFFECT ANYTIME!

We BELIEVE, but CANNOT promise, that any “Veterans Trust” established BEFORE the effective date of the new regulations will not be subject to the new rules.

WE CANNOT GUARANTEE THIS because the regulations and the effective date have NOT been finalized! We are alerting you to these changes so that you MAY have an opportunity to create a trust BEFORE the new regulations are put into place, thereby, hopefully avoiding the new restrictions.

A VERY LIMITED NUMBER OF TRUSTS CAN BE COMPLETED

BEFORE THE CHANGES HAPPEN! 

A VERY LIMITED NUMBER of Veteran Trusts can realistically be completed due to a time line of having the initial conferences, designing the trust, signing the trust, and for you to have time to transfer your assets into the name of the trust before the rules change and these horrible new regulations go into place.

THE NEW REGULATIONS ARE LIFE CHANGING!

PLEASE understand we are not trying to “drum up business.”  What we are trying to do is WARN people we have previously talked to that did not want to undertake setting up a Vet Trust in the past because they felt they had time.  We want you to know and understand TIME IS RUNNING OUT!  There is no longer the possibility of waiting to set up a trust until you or your loved one needs care!  We have special relationships with our Veteran clients and we have always been advocates for Veterans to get the benefits they deserve.

Setting up a Vet Trust NOW could mean the difference between having enough money to afford assisted living instead of moving to a nursing home!

DON’T DELAY!  
CALL VOUGA ELDER LAW TODAY
at 636-394-0009 TODAY to schedule a FREE, no-obligation, initial conference. 

Vouga Elder Law’s Resource Center

Our Resource Center has informBookcase November 2013ation on all aspects of elder care, Veterans Benefits, special needs planning, and estate planning.  In addition, there is information on Alzheimer’s Disease,  Parkinson’s Disease, and Multiple Sclerosis, as well as general information for seniors, adult children and their loved ones.  Our Resource Center is available during business hours from 8:30 a.m.—5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

We will be conducting monthly workshops on legal issues on the above topics.  As well as, hosting and co-hosting events with our friends in the elder care community.

Some of our publications include:

  • Caregiver information for a spouse, adult children and family members
  • Dementia
  • Elder LawHanging Wall November 2013
  • End of Life/Death
  • Estate Recovery
  • Heart Attack, Cardiac Arrest and Stroke
  • Hospice
  • Long Term Care
  • Medicaid and Medicare
  • Safety at Home
  • Senior Driving
  • Senior Exercise and Staying Active
  • Senior Health
  • Senior Housing
  • Staying at Home

    Read more

The Benefits of Working with an Expert in Veterans Benefits

There are many estate planning attorneys, CPAs, and even elder care attorneys who can advise you on a lot of issues related to financial and estate planning. But not many attorneys are accredited with the Veterans Administration, and without that accreditation, they cannot legally provide you with any assistance to obtain Veterans Benefits.

Read more