Children came to the office because their father was in rehab with an upcoming discharge to the nursing home, and their mom was in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease. The children were concerned about getting their father the appropriate long term care, while also trying to protect mom so she could remain in the community until she would have to go to long term care. Our office began preparing a MassHealth application and structuring their assets to protect them for the community spouse. While in rehab, our client began failing and had to be rushed to the hospital. When it became apparent that the client was likely to pass away in the very near future, we moved quickly to restructure the plan to create a discretionary testamentary trust in the Last Will and Testament, utilizing a provision in the federal and state regulations that provides that assets in held by the estate in a testamentary trust are deemed unavailable. We transferred the real estate to the client’s name alone so that upon his death, the testamentary trust would be funded. We put the remaining available assets in the mom’s name for her to reside in the community. When mom needs to enter a long term care facility in the near future, the home will be protected for the family and mom will be eligible for MassHealth.
Creating a living will ensures your future health care decisions and plans are respected. A living will, or advance directive, is a legal document outlining medical treatment preferences and end-of-life care if you can’t communicate or make decisions for yourself.