Our Brentwood, Tennessee Practice Areas
Our legal practice in Brentwood focuses in estate planning, elder law, estate administration, business and corporate law, real estate, and litigation. Explore our practice areas below to learn more about the legal services that we offer our clients.
You may have been putting off making an estate plan because it’s just too hard to think about your own incapacitation or death. This is not uncommon among our clients. We understand how difficult it is to think about those who will be left behind, but we also know how much harder it will be for your loved ones if you do not have an estate plan in place. Without establishing a trust that specifies your wishes, your property, savings accounts, and investments could be tied up in court and subject to tax penalties that could be easily avoided.
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Medicaid can be very helpful to pay for your loved one’s long-term care in Tennessee. It is no secret that long-term care is expensive, and often exceeds $6,000 per month for nursing home care. That is at least $72,000 per year! It is very difficult for families to pay these costs for any length of time.
Medicaid can help pay for these long-term care costs through the TennCare Choices program for our elderly and disabled population. In fact, 65% of nursing home residents in the United States are having all or a portion of their nursing home stay paid for by Medicaid.
It Is Never Too Late to Plan
Many Tennessee families know about the “five-year rule”, and that to engage in Medicaid planning and protect your assets, you must plan at least five-years in advance. Ideally, this is true. However, it is also never too late to plan. There are several other legal planning strategies that we engage for clients of ours that can be of assistance to families. In fact, many of our clients do not have five years to plan, and many are already in a nursing home facility.
Irrevocable Medicaid Asset Protection Trusts
This is often the most popular tool used by elder law attorneys to protect an individual’s assets. The most common misconception about Medicaid is that it is free. It is not! Even if you qualify for Medicaid during your lifetime, after your death, Medicaid will exercise a lien over your property to pay themselves back out of your estate for every penny that was paid out on your behalf during your lifetime in the form of Medicaid benefits. The Irrevocable Medicaid Asset Protection Trust is a popular tool used by elder law attorneys to protect assets from nursing home costs, as well as to protect the estate from estate recovery actions after death.
Qualified Income Trusts
When a person engages in Medicaid planning they almost always forget about the family’s income sources. Also, it can become even more difficult when one spouse is at home and the other spouse is in the nursing home … and even more confusing when it comes to the rules. However, in basic terms, if a Medicaid applicant’s gross income exceeds the limits set by Medicaid, the applicant will not qualify for Medicaid from an income perspective. In these scenarios, a Qualified Income Trust may be necessary to protect the source of income, especially when one spouse is still living at home.
What About When One Spouse is at Home?
When one spouse is at home and one spouse is in the nursing home, the Medicaid rules can be very confusing. In addition, specific planning needs to be addressed to ensure that the spouse staying at home retains enough income in order to live comfortably.
What About In Home Care and Assisted Living Care?
Many people believe that only long-term nursing home care can be covered by Medicaid. That is not correct. Medicaid, specifically TennCare’s Choices program can cover both in home care and assisted living care. Contact our office to learn more about these options and how Medicaid planning can benefit you in these situations.
The Five Year Look Back
Medicaid has look back provisions and transfer penalties for asset gifting. If you do not follow the rules when engaging in Medicaid planning, you may find yourself ineligible for Medicaid for a period of time due to breaking the rules. If you have questions regarding Medicaid Planning and the transfer rules, please contact our office.
Schedule a Medicaid Planning Strategy Session, Attend a Free Workshop on Medicaid Planning, or Register for a Free Webinar on Medicaid Planning!
Whether you are looking for information to protect a loved one, or you have questions about how to protect your own assets and income from the high costs of nursing home care, there are a number of ways to get the information you are looking for. The easiest way, and the way most of our client first learn about Medicaid planning and their options, is to attend one of our Free Workshops held monthly! During this Free Workshop you will discover:
- The Costs of Long-Term Care
- What Facilities Are Covered By Medicaid and the TennCare Choices Program
- What is Medicare
- What is Medicaid
- Irrevocable Medicaid Asset Protection Trusts
- Qualified Income Trusts
- Why Putting Assets in Your Kids Names is a Terrible Idea
- How to Ensure that the Attorney You Select Will Be an Advocate When The Time Comes to Enter a Long-Term Care Facility
- Plus Much More!
CLICK HERE to Register for One of Our Upcoming Monthly Workshops or Webinars!
Being a parent comes with its challenges. I know first-hand. I have two small children (ages 1 and 3). However, being a parent of a special needs child or a child with a disability comes with even more challenges. There are both time constraints, career constraints, and even financial constraints. This includes issues with schooling, medical care needs, and even in-home medical care needs.
However, when you are the parent of a child with disabilities, there are a number of legal responsibilities as well. In many circumstances, families do not call our office until it is too late.
There are a number of planning needs that we help parents with in our law practice Including:
- If You and Your Spouse Should Pass Away While Your Child is Still a Minor, Who Will Raise That Child?
- What To Do Should You and Your Spouse Pass Away When It Comes to Providing For Your Child Who Will Need Specialized Care in Adulthood?
- Ensure That Your Child Will Never Be Disqualified For Certain Federal and State Government Benefit Programs Now or in the Future?
- Who Will Make Your Child’s Financial and Medical Decisions Should You Not Be Around, and When your Child Reaches Adulthood?
- How to Plan your Estate to Leave Instructions, Directions, Memories, and Assets to Your Child?
We answer these questions and solve these problems for our clients everyday and assist them in taking the worrying and legal items off their plate, so they can focus on being great parents and providing a lifestyle for their child now and in the future. If you have these questions, please fill out the contact form at the bottom and left of your screen or call our Client Service Director at (615) 472-2482 to schedule an initial legal strategy session.
Special Needs Trusts or Supplemental Needs Trusts
This is a strategy that would allow your special needs adult child to receive government assistance benefits in the future. This is a legal document that allows the assets that you leave behind to pass to your special needs adult child in trust to supplement any government benefits that they are currently receiving. This allows your special needs adult child to receive the benefit of what you leave behind for him or her, without affecting their lifestyle and benefits.
As with many different types of trusts, a special needs trust is highly specialized. Working closely with an attorney who understands special needs trusts and will guide you through the process of administering the trust and when and how to apply for government benefits is extremely important.
If you are the parent to a special needs child or to a child with a disability, your ability to make decisions for your child when it comes to medical decisions and financial decisions (such as speaking with doctors, accessing bank accounts, accepting their social security benefits, speaking with schools and enrolling your child in other programs) ends when your child turns 18 years of age. In the eyes of the law, your child is an adult. When this time comes, you need to petition the court in what is called a conservatorship proceeding so that you may continue to make the necessary and important decisions on behalf of your child.
You may be reading this and realize you didn’t do that and your child is over the age of 18. Don’t worry, it is not too late. You can still pursue a conservatorship proceeding. However, you should do so soon because you will need the required court documents to be able to act on your child’s behalf including speaking with doctors, accessing medical records, accepting their mandated social security benefits, accessing any bank accounts, or enrolling your child in school or other programs.
Schedule a Special Needs Planning Strategy Session, Attend a Free Workshop on Special Needs Planning, or Register for a Free Webinar on Special Needs Planning!
Whether you are looking for information on when to pursue a conservatorship proceeding, you need to establish a special needs trust, or you just need more information, you will discover everything you need to know including:
- The Importance of Naming a Guardian For Your Child
- What Happens When your Child Turns 18
- How to Avoid the Long and Expensive Court Process Called Probate
- How to Preserve Any Government Benefits Your Child May Be Entitled to Now or In The Future (Hint: Your Children Receiving Their Inheritance Could Disqualify Them!)
- What Is a Special Needs Trust and Is It Necessary?
- What Is a Conservatorship and What is a Guardianship?
- Learn About What You Can Do To Ensure Your Child Continues to Live Their Life With the Lifestyle You Would Want After You’re Gone
- What It’s Important to Leave Behind Detailed Directions and Instruction, And Not Just Money
- Plus Much More!
CLICK HERE to Register for One of Our Upcoming Monthly Workshops or Webinars!
When a loved one dies with or without a will, his or her assets will have to go through probate before passing to surviving family members. The deceased’s final affairs—such as paying bills and settling taxes—will also be taken care of during the probate process. While it may sound simple enough,
While there may be an executor appointed by the loved one’s will, you should consider hiring an experienced probate attorney to help with the complicated process. An attorney can help you ensure that the deceased’s wishes are honored and that the assets are protected as much as possible. An estate planning attorney can also help you make a plan to avoid the probate process when you die.
Our Brentwood, Tennessee Trust and Estate Administration Attorneys Are Here to Help!
Settling a trust and estate can be a difficult process. You are already grieving from the loss of a loved one. Now, you have to go through the process of paying the final bills, cleaning out the home of all your loved one's belongings, distributing the property in accordance with your loved one's wishes, and maybe even selling the real estate. Also, one false move can subject you to personal liability to the estate!
You shouldn't go through this process alone! Our Tennessee Trust and Estate Administration Attorneys are Here to Assist You!
Call Our Office Today at (615) 472-2482 to Discuss Your Trust and Estate Administration Needs. We Are Here to Help!
Protecting What You Have Spent a Lifetime Building Is Extremely Important! Do Not Lose It To a Lawsuit, Divorce Claims, Creditors, or Other Predators. Contact the Asset Protection Attorneys at Fidelis Law, PLLC Today!
Unfortunately, disputes occur in our world every single day. Tragically, disputes even occur after death when it comes to estate settlement. This can include the proper interpretation of a Last Will and Testament, improper action by a Trustee or Beneficiary, or perhaps the changing of a Will or Trust in the days or weeks prior to death.
When disputes involve wills, trusts, and estates, it is important to have a experienced and knowledgable attorney to protect your legal and financial interests.
Explore more about our Trust and Estates Litigation Practice Group!
We represent small to large businesses, including closely held and publicly held companies and corporations regarding a variety of their tax law needs. Explore the variety of our tax law representation as these issues impact our clients.
Our Business and Corporate Law Practice Group is Here to Meet Your Needs. Explore our Website and the Variety of Ways That Our Law Practice Can Assist You From Start-Up to Succession Planning to Raising Capital to Handling RIA Registration and Compliance!