In this Elder Law Minute, Wes Coulson explains how it’s possible to benefit from owning non-residential real estate when planning with DCEL.
Video Transcript: (Summarized)
I’m Wes Coulson, sending warm holiday greetings to you and your loved ones from all of us here at Dent Coulson Elder Law. Welcome to your Elder Law Minute.
In this installment of our video series on what Illinois Medicaid applicants can retain, we’re delving into a topic that might be unfamiliar unless you’re part of a farming community—Life Estates. Personally, I find Life Estates to be one of my favorite tools when it comes to planning, as they often provide a unique way to safeguard real estate that might otherwise be vulnerable. But what exactly is a Life Estate?
A Life Estate signifies an ownership interest that concludes upon the death of the owner. The value of this interest is contingent on the age of the owner. Interestingly, the older you are, the less this interest is appraised for, but it holds more value when expressed as a percentage of the total ownership stake in the property.
Now, one of the remarkable aspects of Life Estates, especially concerning real estate protection, is that when the owner—particularly the Medicaid Applicant—passes away, there’s no property left for the state to claim. As I often phrase it, “they may be aiming at the departing train, but they’re still at the station, and the train has already departed.”
Our planning strategies sometimes involve restructuring property ownership, such as a shared property where the Medicaid Applicant mainly or solely holds the life estate interest. This approach allows us to safeguard a substantial portion of value. Particularly for individuals with non-residential real estate holdings, we’re capable of performing solutions akin to magic, shielding valuable assets that might otherwise remain exposed.
If this concept intrigues you or applies to your situation, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re here to provide assistance. Thank you.
Also looking for information about Medicaid and Asset Preservation? Visit these articles:
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Dent-Coulson Elder Law is dedicated to providing families in the St. Louis area with their Elder Law needs. Our practice areas include Asset Preservation Planning, Veterans Benefits, Medicaid Eligibility, Alzheimer’s Planning, Special Needs Planning, Estate Planning and more. We understand the financial challenges you may face as you and your loved ones grow older. At Dent-Coulson Elder Law, our clients’ well-being is our number one priority. For immediate help, call (618) 632-7000 (IL) or (314) 567-9292 (MO), or Contact Us and we will get in touch as soon as possible.