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Should the Rich Pay More In Taxes?

Recent polls support the idea that the government should soak the rich for more taxes. More than 70% of the adults in the United States approve of increasing federal taxes on families who earn more than a quarter of a million dollars per year starting in 2013. More than half of the Republicans agree to the tax increase as well as more than three quarters of the Democrats.
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Is Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Dollars A Year The Number that Establishes that Someone Is Rich?

The cost of living in major metropolitan areas of the United States is high. Two hundred fifty thousand dollars a year is a lot of money. But it does not make a family rich!  President Obama is consumed with the idea of raising taxes.  His definition of who is rich is incorrect.  A fairer measure of wealth would be to set the standard for individuals receiving a tax increase at between five hundred thousand and one million dollars per year.

Bush Presidency Tax Cuts

When President Bush was in office, he was able to motivate congress to pass tax cuts for everyone. This included individuals earning millions of dollars per year. These tax cuts stay in effect until the end of 2012.

President Obama believes that the best way to reduce the deficit is to “tax the rich”. This is not the best solution to America’s financial problems. A much more sophisticated detailed plan must be enacted to the deal with America’s huge deficit. A more effective tax cut then those proposed by President Obama would be to raise the tax rate of everyone in the United States making under $500,000.00 a year by one percent and raise the tax rate for individuals who make over $500,000.00 by two percent. This would generate much more income.

New York Elder Law Attorneys

Elliot S. Schlissel is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. He drafts wills. He also deals with guardianship matters and assisted living issues. The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo handles medicaid eligibility, medicaid problems and also drafts living wills. Call for a free consultation.

How Much Money Do You Need to Retire?

If you don’t know the answer to the question how much money you need to retire, you should not retire. Guessing is not a solution to this problem. Recent studies show that more than half of Americans who retire aren’t sure how much money they will need. Those Americans that have retirement strategies often do not take into consideration the rising cost of health care retired Americans face.

A recent study showed that baby boomers felt they needed $60,000.00 a year to retire. However, the same individuals could not calculate how large a financial portfolio was necessary to throw off $60,000.00 a year in income.

Just Keep Working

A large portion of the baby boomers interviewed felt that their retirement solution was to “just keep working.” I personally subscribe to this theory! As long as you just keep working you don’t have to worry about how much money you will need to retire or how much money you don’t have that is necessary to retire.

Do’s and Don’t’s Involving Retirement

Speak to friends, relatives and other individuals who have retired and ask them what it is costing them. Develop a plan and put the plan in writing. Thereafter, carry out the terms of the plan.  Educate yourself as to issues involving investing for retirement. Participate in employer related 401K and pension plans. Last but not least, simply don’t retire!

Wills and Trusts Lawyer

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo has experience in handling all types of wills, trusts and estate law issues. We probate wills and contest wills. We deal with issues concerning administration, estate taxes and estate planning. We represent executors of wills and we probate the wills.  We draft revocable living trusts and irrevocable living trusts for our clients. We also draft special needs trust for special needs children.  We deal with all types of elder care issues, including, but not limited to the nursing home abuse, medicaid planning techniques and medicaid qualification. Feel free to call us for a consultation.

Fewer Family Practice Doctors

doc-150x150Fewer doctors in the United States are going into family practice. Solo medical practitioners involved in family practices are becoming scarcer. The American Academy of Family Physicians, in 1986, represented forty-four percent of the practicing doctors. As of 2008, only eighteen percent of practicing physicians are in family practice and that number continues to grow smaller.

In 2007, twenty-eight percent of the doctors in private practice described themselves as being self-employed. In 1970, almost sixty percent of all doctors were self-employed.

New Doctors Don’t Want Family Practices

Many of the doctors graduating medical school have no interest in small family practices. They seek better life styles, which involve shorter working days and weekends off. They want to avoid patient emergencies.

New Doctors Have to Deal With Debt Obligations

Many doctors going into medical practice today borrowed large sums to help pay for their medical school expenses. These young doctors are looking for steady pay checks that have no risk attached to them.

Will Patients Suffer?

There are benefits for patients who use larger medical practices. These larger practices can provide more preventive medical services. They have the financial ability to use technology to enhance their practice, which gives them greater capabilities.

Loss of the Personal Touch

Generations of Americans have had personal, confidential relationships with their physicians. Physicians were trusted individuals. Patients felt they had a personal relationship with them. Newer, larger medical groups may lack this personal touch. Doctors who are part of larger medical groups have the ability to pool their resources to provide more sophisticated, higher levels of medical care.

There are pluses and minuses involved in a demise of the local family sole practitioner. Although there is a loss of the personal relationship, the patient may end up with more sophisticated medical care!

New York Lawyers

The attorneys at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have more than 70 years of combined legal experience. We draft wills and trusts. We probate wills. We litigate will contests. We draft revocable living trusts and irrevocable trusts for our clients. Elliot S. Schlissel is a member of The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys.

We represent individuals with regard to issues concerning medicaidmedicaid planning techniques and developing special needs trusts for special needs children. We also deal with issues involving nursing home abuse. Feel free to call for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

Why Have an Irrevocable Trust?

living-trusts-typesWills, revocable trusts, and irrevocable trusts are all estate planning devices. Revocable trusts are a type of trust that can be changed, modified, or revoked at anytime. This type of trust allows you to change your mind with regard to all aspects of the terms of the trust. These trusts are very flexible.

Uses of a revocable trust:

1. Revocable living trusts avoid probate. The assets in the trust at the time of the death of the individual who made the trust pass directly to the beneficiary. The trust does not have to be probated.

2. It is private document. Wills need to be probated. This opens up the terms of the will to review by a court. Once the will is filed with the courts it becomes a public document and other individuals can obtain copies of the will. An example is Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis’s will in Manhattan. So many people wanted to see it that it was displayed to the public mounted it under plexiglass. The details of your assets and the individuals who receive your assets remain a private matter.

3. It establishes a plan that deals with mental disabilities such as Alzheimer’s disease and other mental illnesses that effect seniors. When you place assets in a revocable trust and the person who created the trust becomes disabled, the trustee or alternate trustee supervises the trust and distribution of the assets therein. If you do not have this type of trust or a power of attorney, it becomes necessary for your loved ones or next of kin to bring a guardianship proceeding under article 81 of the New York Mental Hygiene Law to appoint a guardian for you.

Should you have questions regarding revocable trusts contact the trust attorneys at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo at 1-800-344-6431 or by email.

When You (Or a Loved One) May be Entering a Nursing Home…

nursing-home-elder-lawIf you, a spouse, or parent think that you may need the services of a nursing home in the near future, you should know that there are some things you can do to plan for this possibility and help maintain some of the person’s assets.

Nursing homes can be very expensive. Residing on one can deplete $9,000 to $12,000 per month from one’s assets on a monthly basis. You can apply for Medicaid to assist with these bills, but they will only begin paying once the person has completely “spent down” their assets to$13,800 (in 2009) altogether.

There are steps that you can take which would allow you to preserve much of your assets for the next generation while still qualifying for Medicaid if and when nursing home services are needed.

When an individual applies for Medicaid, and the Department of Social Services is looking into whether the application has indeed depleted his or her assets down to almost nothing, they actually look up to five years prior to the application date to see if the person made any transfers to children or others in order to preserve their assets from Medicaid’s required “spend down” to poverty.

Elder law attorneys, such as the experienced lawyers at The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo, can assist individuals in applying for Medicaid or, for instance, setting up an Irrevocable Trust that may allow a senior to preserve his or her assets from Medicaid’s “spend down” requirement throughout their lives.

We can personalize these trusts depending on each individuals circumstances.

For instance, if someone has owned their home for a long time, such that the house has increased in value by $250,000 for individuals or $500,000 for married couples, and if the Irrevocable Trust does not appropriately deal with this increased equity in the residence, there can be significant tax liability when the house is sold.

Regardless of whether you need an Elder Law attorney to prepare a Medicaid application or create any other kind of Medicaid plan, you can contact our offices at 800-344-6431 or e-mail us with any questions or to set up a free consultation.

Picture courtesy of injuryboard.com.

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