More than 68 percent of New Jersey residents know someone who has or had dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, according to a survey conducted by Fairleigh Dickinson’s PublicMind. Dementia is a group of symptoms that can include impairments to one’s ability to think and communicate, as well as memory loss. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia. It is a progressive, degenerative disorder that impairs thinking, behavior and memory. Due to the degenerative nature of the disease, those with Alzheimer’s are encouraged to obtain an advance directive, a legal document that can direct medical and financial wishes, even after the point when individuals lose the ability to do so themselves.
On September 8th and 9th 2016, more than 140 New Jersey law enforcement officers attended a conference held by the Middlesex County Prosecutors office aimed at training the officers in elder abuse prevention. The two-day conference headlined with over twenty guest speakers was held at the Middlesex County Fire Academy in Sayerville. NJToday reported that officers from every one of the 28 police agencies within Middlesex county, along with officers from the Piscataway Police Department attended the conference.
With more senior couples divorcing, those who wish to keep the house may have the answer to their prayers provided it makes its way this side of the Atlantic: the “divorce mortgage.”
The concept is catching on in the U.K., according to an article in the British paper The Telegraph. As in the U.S., many senior couples in the U.K. are untying the knot, with 28% of them selling their home after the split, according to Nationwide. Another 13% have moved into a smaller house and 8% are now renting an apartment.
With what he sees as today’s seniors being “home-rich” but “cash-poor,” G. William Hoagland, senior vice president of the Washington, D.C.-based think tank Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), suggested that seniors look outside traditional forms of retirement planning and start thinking about reverse mortgages, according to an article from Reverse Mortgage Daily.
Speaking before a policy forum hosted by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, Mr. Hoagland said the untapped home equity could provide senior homeowners with the financial resources that they need to set themselves up for retirement. “Home equity, we think, is underutilized in retirement planning,” he said.
Effective December 1, 2014, in order to qualify for Medicaid, the applicant whose income exceeds the monthly income cap under the Medicaid program must create a Miller Trust. The excess monthly income is essentially placed into a self-created Miller Trust and paid directly to the nursing home each month by the designated trustee.
On December 19, 2014, the President signed into law the Achieving a Better Life (ABLE) Act of 2014, which allows for disabled persons to have limited savings accounts, without jeopardizing any governmental benefits received by that disabled person. The Treasury is to create regulations with respect to ABLE act accounts. The ABLE account is intended to be similar to a 529 Plan. There is a limit on what can be contributed to the account, but the disabled person would have the ability to withdraw monies from the account to meet his or her needs on an on-going basis.