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Ombudsmen: Front-Line Advocates for Nursing Home Residents

Posted by Nina Whitehurst | Jan 05, 2022 | 0 Comments

Disagreements with a nursing home can arise regarding any number of topics, including the quality of food, troublesome roommates, lack of privacy, or services not meeting what was promised. Many disputes can be resolved by speaking with a nursing home staff member, supervisor, or moving up the chain of command. But if you can't resolve things within the nursing home, your next step should be to contact the local ombudsman assigned to the nursing home.

How Do I File for a Guardianship?

Posted by Nina Whitehurst | Dec 29, 2021 | 0 Comments

No one wants to see a loved one become unable to make decisions for him or herself. If this happens, however, the court may appoint a substitute decision maker, often called a "guardian," but in some states called a "conservator" or other term. A guardian is only appointed as a last resort if other, less restrictive, alternatives, such as a power of attorney, are not in place or are not working.

Closing of Social Security Field Offices Disrupted SSI Benefits for Thousands, Lawsuit Charges

Posted by Nina Whitehurst | Dec 24, 2021 | 0 Comments

When the SSA closed its field offices at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, it remained open for the purposes of denying benefits. But, plaintiffs say, the agency was effectively shut for low-income elderly adults and people with disabilities who needed to validate claims, or who sought to challenge the agency’s denial of their claims. The result: thousands of beneficiaries whose benefits were wrongfully reduced or discontinued, according to the suit.

What Is a Fiduciary and What Are Its Obligations?

Posted by Nina Whitehurst | Dec 08, 2021 | 0 Comments

When you need someone else to care for money or property on your behalf, that person (or organization) is called a fiduciary.  A fiduciary is a person or entity entrusted with the power to act for someone else, and this power comes with the legal obligation to act for the benefit of that other person.

6 Things to Ask Before Agreeing to Be a Trustee

Posted by Nina Whitehurst | Nov 24, 2021 | 0 Comments

Being asked to serve as the trustee of the trust of a family member is a great honor. It means that the family member trusts your judgment and is willing to put the welfare of the beneficiary or beneficiaries in your hands.  But being a trustee is also a great responsibility. You need to go into it with your eyes wide open. Here are six questions to ask before saying "yes":

How Much Money Can You Have and Still Qualify for Medicaid?

Posted by Nina Whitehurst | Nov 10, 2021 | 0 Comments

In order to be eligible for Medicaid benefits a nursing home resident may have no more than $2,000 in "countable" assets (the figure may be somewhat higher in some states). Note that Medicaid is a state-run program, so the rules are somewhat different in each state (especially California), although there are federal guidelines.

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