Posts Tagged ‘baby boomers’

Elder Care Management Services and Assisted Living Placement Services Help Seniors at Different Care Levels

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

As the baby boom generation ages, more and more people are faced with the challenges of finding the proper care for older loved ones.  For seniors who need constant care, this often means looking at options for assisted living facilities.  Even if an older person is able to live at home, when loved ones do not live nearby, help is often needed.  The fields of assisted living placement services and elder care management services have expanded, and various levels of service are available for those who need help.

For aging seniors, the transition from fully independent living to the need for assisted living is sometimes gradual and sometimes sudden.  Loved ones often find themselves needing to choose an assisted living facility without having done the research necessary to find the best fit.  In other cases, loved ones may not live close by, making site visits difficult.  In this type of situation, an assisted living placement service can be very helpful.

Assisted living placement companies usually offer counseling and assessment services to determine the necessary level of care, and arrange for tours of facilities in your area.  Such companies usually collect fees from the facilities themselves, so their services are free to the consumer.

Whether a senior resides in an assisted living facility or at home, it can be difficult for loved ones to deal with medical, financial and insurance concerns, especially if they do not live nearby.  In these cases, elder care management services can provide the help needed.

One such company is Golden Years Living Solutions, based in White Plains, which provides a free service to families who are searching for senior residences (including assisted living, Alzheimer’s/dementia care and independent/55+ retirement communities).  After consulting with the family, an advisor provides information on the various senior living options available (including care level, rates, availability and promotions) based on the families’ needs and desired location and budget.

Caring for an aging loved one can be challenging, and it is important to know that you don’t need to do it alone.

For more information about our elder law services, visit

Elder Law Attorney Bernard A. Krooks to Speak at Heckerling Institute

Monday, January 7th, 2013

White Plains, New York (January 10, 2013) – Bernard A. Krooks, Esq., a founding partner of Littman Krooks LLP, will be a guest speaker at the 47th Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning on January 14, 2013, at the Orlando World Center Marriott Resort and Convention Center, in Orlando, Florida.

Mr. Krooks will be speaking about the “graying” of Baby Boomers and their need for elder law services. Mr. Krooks will also discuss “Later Life Law” and how elder care attorneys can assist their clients with Medicaid options as well as other areas of elder care planning including retirement accounts, long-term care insurance and tax considerations and the use of trusts in elder law and special needs planning.

The Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning is known as the premiere U.S. conference for estate planning professionals, including attorneys, accountants, trust officers, insurance advisors and wealth management professionals. The program offers lectures and special sessions with comprehensive coverage of estate planning techniques and strategies, designed to allow attendees to customize their educational experience.

Mr. Krooks has been included among The Best Lawyers in America® for each of the last six years. He has been selected as a “New York Super Lawyer” since 2006. Krooks has received his AEP accreditation from the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils. He is a member of the Real Property, Probate & Trust Law Section and Tax Section of the American Bar Association. He is a sought-after expert on estate planning and elder law matters and has been quoted in leading publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and Forbes, among others.

About Littman Krooks

Littman Krooks LLP provides sophisticated legal advice and the high level of expertise ordinarily associated with large law firms along with the personal attention and responsiveness of smaller firms. These ingredients, which are the cornerstone of effective representation and are necessary to a successful lawyer/client relationship, have become the foundation of the firm’s success.

Littman Krooks LLP offers legal services in several areas of law, including elder law, estate planning, special needs planning, special education advocacy, and corporate and securities. Their offices are located at 399 Knollwood Road, White Plains, New York; 655 Third Avenue, New York, New York; and 300 Westage Business Center Drive, Fishkill, New York. Visit the firm’s website at

Picking Up the Tab

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

This article was featured in the Westchester County Business Journal (November 27, 2012). For a link back to this article,  click here.

BY Bernard A. Krooks, Esq., Littman Krooks LLP

Baby boomers could soon face their own fiscal cliff, as state governments consider the implications of “filial responsibility” claims making their way through court systems. Although seldom enforced, statutes holding adult children responsible for their parents’ bills are on the books in about 30 states. A Pennsylvania man was recently told to pay $93,000 for his mother’s nursing home care.

Filial responsibility laws have been around since colonial times, but with the advent of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, most states stopped enforcing them. Now that the national dialogue is increasingly focused on the role that entitlements should play in balancing the budget, that could change.

New York has no filial responsibility law at this time, but consider the numbers: According to AARP, nearly three-quarters of the $13.4 billion spent each year in New York for nursing home care is primarily paid by Medicaid, a program that’s jointly funded with federal and state dollars.

With the largest generation in U.S. history approaching retirement, costs stand to balloon. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has already been aggressive in his efforts to rein in Medicaid costs. Shifting responsibility from a controversial, publicly funded benefit to family members could prove attractive.

Filial responsibility laws usually involve situations in which a parent has unpaid medical bills or has relied on government support. States have been known to garnish wages, assign property liens and report unpaid debt to credit agencies. In some places, it’s possible to serve jail time.

Enforcement has typically involved situations in which the adult child was somehow responsible for the parent’s impoverishment, perhaps by defrauding them. Not so in the Pennsylvania case. So adult children who may have had absolutely no control over their parents’ financial decisions could suddenly be faced with whopping bills.

These are particularly stressful economic times for boomers, faced with tuition debt, shrinking retirement investments and recession-hobbled careers. Although courts have typically not forced adult offspring into poverty, the result can still be devastating. The son hit with his mom’s $93,000 bill had an $85,000 yearly income.

Given longer life spans, traditional preparations for retirement may be insufficient. In many cases, the younger generation has assumed that mom or dad could just move in with them, if necessary. At worst, they figured that Medicaid would handle nursing home expenses. But the elder care landscape may be changing in ways that are difficult to predict, and potential liability argues for increased involvement by adult children in their parents’ financial planning.

Because elderly parents can be stubborn about sharing money details, it may be helpful to frame such discussions in terms of the arrangements that middle-aged “kids” are making for their own golden years. And long-term care insurance should certainly play a part in the conversation. If parents don’t already have a policy, run the numbers.

Depending on their age, high premiums may mean that it’s more cost-effective to self-insure. In either case, money should be allocated to cover care that may not be handled by either Medicare or Medicaid. It may be advisable for adult children to help out with premium payments now to avoid more expense later on. If acquiring a long-term care policy is practical, sorting through the options can be confusing. So it’s wise to seek advice from a certified elder law attorney, who can explain the various options and riders available to you in these insurance policies.

It appears that many of the filial responsibility suits underway in Pennsylvania – given current program guidelines – are aimed at prodding offspring to file Medicaid applications on behalf of their parents. So establishing and maintaining eligibility for the government benefits that are currently available are other important considerations. Again, the process can be complex and legal advice can avert costly mistakes.

It’s not easy to watch parents age, and most adult children want to do everything possible to ensure their security. No one can predict what will happen in New York state regarding filial responsibility statutes, but candid family discussions and contingency planning could avoid having to make painful, crisis-driven choices in the future.

Bernard A. Krooks is managing partner of the law firm Littman Krooks L.L.P. (, with offices in White Plains, Manhattan and Fishkill. He is a certified elder law attorney and past president of both the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the Estate Planning Council of Westchester County.