Our Services: Probate

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Elder Law ... Or Estate Planning? (What's the Difference?)

When people like you come to our law firm, the first focus is usually on wills and trusts. I will usually hear something like, “I want to make sure my money, home, and other things pass to my heirs with as little as possible in taxes and other expenses when I die.”

Estate planning attorneys help people worried about “what happens when I die.” It covers distributing your assets, how they are distributed, who gets them, and the estate administration process.

Learn more about Estate Planning & Elder Law

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Death Planning Isn't The Whole Story

Of course, all of those things are very important. But for seniors and leading-edge Baby Boomers (retired or nearing retirement), you have (or should have) additional concerns.

What happens if you live and need care? What if you need care that Medicare and your private insurance will not cover? Can you get long-term care insurance (even if you can, is it the best way to spend your money)? Can you afford the high costs of long-term care?

Read more about Long Term Care Here!

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Asset Protection And Access To Important Benefits To Pay For Care

That's why we specialize in Michigan elder law, because we ALL may need to face the reality of care as we age.

Additionally, what makes sense in a traditional planning situation may prove financially catastrophic from an elder law standpoint.

Why? So that you can protect a lifetime of savings that YOU obtained through hard work.

Americans are living longer due to advances in modern medicine and healthier lifestyles. With Americans living longer comes an increase in the likelihood that they will outlive their ability to care for themselves and end up in a nursing home or needing some other form of long-term care.

Without proper planning, the lack of available services, and the staggering price of long-term health care, financial ruin for many families is the reality as they face the prospect of outliving their money and assets.

A recent study revealed that 2 out of every five individuals reaching age 65 need long-term care. In Michigan, the average cost of skilled care is approximately $87,600.00 per year (and in Southeast Michigan, where our main office is located, the cost is closer to over $100,000 per year)!

For those wishing to remain living in the comforts of their own home, the cost is almost $200,000 for 24/7 at-home care.

While many believe that health insurance and Medicare will cover the cost of long-term care (whether at home, in an assisted living facility, or in a skilled care facility), you need to be clear that Medicare does NOT cover the cost of long-term care ... it is a personal responsibility. 

Only two government programs may provide benefits for those seeking long-term care -  Medicaid and Veterans Benefits.  

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Good Elder Law Attorneys:


• Can help you/your family save hundreds of thousands of dollars of assets, even if a loved one is already in a nursing home;

• Can help your other family members navigate the minefield of crisis healthcare;

• Understands how to obtain valuable governmental benefits for long term care costs;

• Specializes in protecting your assets during your life;

• Uses a “life care” approach, not just a “death planning” approach;

• Is always looking for ways to keep your loved ones out of court, in the event of a long term care crisis or even your death;

• Cultivates relationships with nursing homes, health care providers, respite care providers, and other businesses necessary to the comfort, independence and care of your loved ones, so you have the right resources;

• Also does “regular” estate planning, such as wills and revocable living trusts;

• Keeps private family matters private, which does not happen if the court needs to get involved in disputes in any way;

• Isn’t just for “rich people;”

• Saves money in the long run!

Need help? Our office serves clients with elder law needs all over Michigan: from Traverse City to Farmington Hills, Drummond Island to Grand Rapids. Contact Us today!

Unfortunately, most people these days don't die peacefully in their own beds after a long and healthy life.

The reality is that over 70% of Americans will have some sort of illness or disability that will require care. 

The biggest avoidable mistake? Not preparing for this reality.

The good news is that we can help.  Like you, we hope for the best... but more importantly, we help you plan for the worst.

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Learn More about Probate

Three Surprising Things I’ve Learned Working for an Elder Law Attorney (You Might Be Surprised Too)

Read Blog Post

Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE)

Read Blog Post