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Gainesville Florida Estate Planning & Elder Law Blog

Monday, July 18, 2016

Documents Necessary for College Kids


Many parents are under the assumption that they can receive all of their children’s information since they still are supporting them, but that is not the case. Once a child reaches the age of 18, privacy laws are applied to them in the same way they are applied to adults. People think that the following three documents are only needed when you are older, when in reality they are needed once you turn 18 and are ready to go away for college.

 1. HIPAA Release.
Read more . . .


Monday, July 11, 2016

VA System Needs Fixing


 

Whether it is waiting three hours on the phone to speak to a doctor or not being able to make a doctor’s appointment for eight months, veterans are having a difficult time trying to see doctors. The lack of doctors and their minimal time to see the veteran patients are causing the veteran to wait an excessive amount of time.  

Congress thought they resolved this issue by creating the Veterans Choice program in 2014. This law expanded the number of options that veterans had for receiving health care. The goal of this act was to provide veterans with visits to the physician’s offices in a timely manner.
Read more . . .


Monday, July 4, 2016

Medicare Celebrates 50 Years


We hit a Medicare milestone last Friday, July 1, as the program hit 50. Medicare first started covering Americans who were 65 or over on July 1, 1966.

Just getting everyone enrolled in 1966 was a monumental task since half the people in that age group had no insurance at all. But since that time the program has been providing outstanding service for older Americans.

The Center for Medicare Advocacy recognized Medicare’s 50 years with a list of 10 great accomplishments – some well-known and others more obscure.
Read more . . .


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Grandparents Investments in 529s


With college costs and the associated debt graduates find themselves in after finishing school increasing at an alarming rate, students are more and more trying to connect with a new alternative source for funding – their grandparents.

And grandparents – feeling that familial obligation – are coming through when they can.

An average year’s college tuition ranges from $17,000 to $60,000 a year, and that’s without any of the extra associated costs. As a result, a recent survey by Fidelity Investments indicates more than 50% of grandparents are saving or plan to save their money to help pay for college for their grandchildren.

If you are in that group, one of the best ways to accomplish this is through a 529 plan – a tax-advantaged savings plan designed to encourage saving for future college costs.
Read more . . .


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Working Past Retirement Improves Health


People often dream about the day they hit retirement, officially marking the end of their workdays. It’s then they can relax, enjoy life and get to that bucket list.

But more and more people are starting to put off the R word – and with good reason. Recent studies are showing that working beyond 65 can bring a person social, economic and health benefits. Evidence shows that there’s a strong correlation between health and working longer.
Read more . . .


Monday, June 20, 2016

Dying Without a Will


While the recent deaths of several celebrities – most notably Prince – have brought much media attention to the problems that occur when someone passes away without a will, the issue is not limited to people of great wealth.

Commonly known as dying intestate, when someone passes away without a will, it becomes the responsibility of the court to determine what to do with that person’s estate.

In Florida that usually means your assets go to your closest relatives. There are very specific guidelines. For example, if there are children but no spouse, the children get everything.
Read more . . .


Monday, June 13, 2016

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day


It is certainly unfortunate that we have to stop and put a date on a calendar to remind us about the misfortunes of elder abuse. But we do, and this year it is this Wednesday, June 15.

         World Elder Abuse Awareness Day was started by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization (WHO) of the United Nations.

Elder abuse is considered a violation of human rights and a major cause of illness, injury, loss of productivity, isolation and despair, according to the WHO. In the United States alone, as many as 5 million people annually are victims of elder abuse.
Read more . . .


Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Being a Caregiver Includes Financial Responsibilities


We have all heard and understand that it is often the case that as our parents age, we become the parents. We are often tasked with making medical decisions and other life-related decisions. Even something as simple as when mom or dad stops driving often becomes a decision for us to make.

All of it takes an emotional toll both on us as caregivers and on our older loved ones who often fight against giving up that control.

One of those areas in which we may have to step in is financial.
Read more . . .


Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Retirement Sabotage


There’s a huge difference between wanting a successful retirement plan and obtaining a successful retirement plan. We tend to blame external factors as the reason we don’t plan successfully, when in reality, it is all on our plate. An individual’s future financial plan is crucial and without extensive preparation, it will be difficult to achieve. If you find yourself falling into any of the situations below, you can be harming your retirement.

 1.
Read more . . .


Monday, May 23, 2016

The Elder Financial Abuse Epidemic


Elder financial abuse has been prevalent for a many years and it unfortunately continues to grow as time passes. Seniors have been experiencing more fraud due to their increased use of the Internet and technology. Individuals target older people because elders tend to have money sitting in the bank, they tend to be more gullible and they tend to be more kind and friendly individuals. Recent research reports that seniors lost around $36 billion dollars each year due to financial abuse and up to 44 million Americans were victims of these scams. Common fraud types include telemarketing fraud, identity theft, health care/health insurance fraud, and Internet scams.
Read more . . .


Monday, May 16, 2016

Who Should You Select as Your Executor?


When you consider your executor, or as is commonly known in Florida your personal representative, it is likely the last person you will ever ask to do something for you. Studies show that most people name a family member or friend as the executor of their will. But is that the right choice?

 Florida has very specific rules about who can serve in this role as an estate goes through probate, debts and taxes are paid and the balance gets transferred to the people entitled to it under your will.

 Florida statutes say your personal representative must be at least 18 years old and mentally and physically capable of serving – that is, not judged incapacitated by a court. Like many other states, Florida prohibits people who have felony convictions from serving as an executor.
Read more . . .


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