Frequently asked questions for elder law attorneys in Pennsylvania

Why do I need an elder law attorney?

Elder law attorneys help clients navigate a myriad of complex issues as they age. They possess the nuanced understanding necessary to safeguard their clients’ interests in these matters. With expertise in Medicaid planning, estate planning, guardianship and long-term care planning, they provide invaluable guidance to families facing these challenges. At Scott Bloom Law, we ensure comprehensive protection and peace of mind for you and your loved ones. Investing in the expertise of an elder law attorney to navigate the complexities of elder care law will provide you with confidence and security.

What is a will?

A will is a legal document outlining how you would like your assets, property and belongings distributed after your death. Wills are administered through probate court to ensure your debts – including taxes – are paid, and your assets are distributed to your beneficiaries according to your wishes. It is possible to make a DIY will, but it is recommended you work with an attorney to write one.

What is a living trust?

A living trust is a legal arrangement where a person (the grantor) transfers ownership of their assets into a trust during their lifetime. This trust essentially holds your (the grantor’s) belongings, such as money, property or investments. While you’re alive, you have the ability to take assets out of the trust and also put them in. The grantor also has the ability to decide who will take ownership of the trust and distribute its contents after they pass away.

What is a power of attorney?

Simply put, a power of attorney, or POA, is a legal document that grants someone else the authority to act on your behalf in various legal, financial or medical matters. The person granting the authority is known as the “principal,” while the individual receiving the authority is referred to as the “agent” or “attorney-in-fact.” There are several different powers of attorney:

  • General Power of Attorney
  • Limited or Special Power of Attorney
  • Durable Power of Attorney
  • Medical Power of Attorney

Every situation is different, so it is important to speak with an attorney to decide what is best for you.

What is asset preservation?

Asset preservation is a way to protect your assets from creditors. It is a proactive legal action that protects your assets from future claims, lawsuits, divorces, creditors and judgments. Asset preservation planning involves putting into place a series of legal techniques that can prevent a lawsuit from occurring.  It can help prevent or stop the seizure of your assets in the event of a judgment.

How can I qualify for Medicaid benefits?

Qualifying for Medicaid benefits can be a complex process, but an elder law attorney can assist you in many ways to qualify:

  • Restructuring your assets in a way that complies with the strict Medicaid regulations.
  • Assist with the extensive paperwork and documentation needed to apply for Medicaid.
  • Navigate complex rules, which vary from state to state.
  • Advocate on your behalf in appeals if your application is denied or if you encounter any other issues, ensuring you receive the benefits you are entitled to.

How do I plan for my retirement?

  • Retirement benefit advice: Understanding the intricacies of 401(k) plans, pensions and social security benefits, and creating plans to maximize them.
  • Estate planning: Ensure your assets are distributed to the necessary people after you pass away based on your wishes, minimizing potential family conflicts and other complications.
  • Tax planning: Developing tax-efficient strategies that will help preserve your retirement income and wealth preservation goals.

An elder law and estate planning attorney can provide comprehensive guidance and peace of mind when planning for retirement.

What is the cost of long-term care?

According to a 2023 Genworth survey, the average monthly cost for a private nursing home room in Pennsylvania was $11,558, or $138,696 annually. In New Jersey, the average monthly cost for a private room was $12,699, or $152,388 annually. Additionally, for the average American 62-year-old, the annual premium for long-term care insurance is about $3,600, according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance.

Do you need help with wills, trusts, Medicaid planning, retirement planning and more? Contact us now at Scott Bloom Law and schedule your FREE consultation. We want to give you the help you deserve.

CLIENT Testimonial

Scott Bloom Law Estate Planning Diagram

Sometimes after a loved one passes away, the family learns of things they were unaware of while the loved one was living. This was the case for one of our clients, Sam, after his father Tom Jr. passed away. Sam was always under the impression that the home he had grown up in, and that his father had lived in until his death, was owned by Tom Jr. To say it came as a surprise that it was indeed Sam’s grandfather, Tom Sr., who was the actual owner of the home, is an understatement. 

Apparently, when Tom Sr. had passed away nearly 40 years ago, there was no proper estate plan established. Now, Sam would need to open his grandfather’s estate, resolve tax issues that were never addressed, and then go through the legal process to make the home a part of his father’s estate. At first, Sam believed that the entire process would be easy enough for him to handle on his own. However, after digging a little deeper, he quickly realized he would need the help of a knowledgeable and experienced attorney.

Sam reached out to Scott Bloom Law and we developed a game plan for moving forward. We began by probating Tom Jr.’s will and, after some time, we were able to settle the estates of both Tom Sr. and Tom Jr. While it was no fault of Sam, this is a great example of the importance of having an Estate Plan in place. No one wants to leave their families in precarious situations after they pass. The long-term purpose of setting up an Estate Plan today is to preserve as much of your wealth as possible for the intended beneficiaries and retaining a capable attorney can help ensure all of your wishes are met.

At Scott Bloom Law, we are a team of advocates who care, always fighting for what’s best for our clients and their families. With knowledge, experience, and compassion, we strive to find solutions that make the aging process as emotionally and financially easy as possible. Visit us at scottbloomlaw.com or call 215-364-1111, to talk to find out more.

- Case Study: Estate Administration

Schedule Your Free Consultation

At Scott Bloom Law, we strive to provide excellent client service and will contact you as soon as possible. Send us an email, or call us to speak to someone directly.

CLIENT Testimonial

Scott Bloom is one of the most caring, responsive, elder law attorney you can find in central New Jersey. He has been a great support not only for my parents but also for me and my siblings. We are deeply grateful for everything he has done over the past 3 years. I am thankful ever day that he came into our lives. In the past year, we lost our father to the terrible disease of dementia, but we are relieved to know that our mother is still in good hands with Scott by her side. Our entire family highly recommends Scott Bloom and his team!
- Annette B., Allentown, New Jersey
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