Lethal Plans: When Seniors Turn To Suicide In Long-Term Care

Suicide rates in the United States are climbing but an often overlooked segment of suicides are those committed by older adults in long-term care settings. A six-month long investigation by Kaiser Health News and PBS Newshour found that older Americans are quietly killing themselves in nursing homes, assisted living centers and adult care homes. Prevention, through screenings at intake and education of staff of suicide warning signs, would help lower suicides in their facilities. For the complete article, follow our link to Kaiser Health News. A six-month investigation by KHN and PBS NewsHour finds that older Americans are quietly killing Continue Reading

Supplements Won’t Prevent Dementia. But These Steps Might.

The food and drug administration estimates that 80% of older adults rely on dietary supplements, many purporting to prevent or treat alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. In Februay, the FDA cracked down on this burgeoning market by sending warning letters or advisories to 17 companies selling about 60 supplements. in lieu of supplements, three steps are recommended to slow cognitive decline: increased physical activity, blood pressure management and cognitive training. for the complete article, folllow our link to the New York Times. Scientists still have no magic shield against Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Yet there is evidence that Continue Reading

Medford musician fights eviction from home of 70 years

Joe Lentino, retired trombonist, took a reverse mortgage in 2007 to settle some debts. When he began unemployed, he missed some tax payments on his house. Many seniors in Massachusetts face difficulty in paying their property taxes due to rising home values and fixed incomes; many Massachusetts communities offer tax relief through tax deferral programs in which lets homeowners over age 65 postpone paying taxes until after their houses are sold. The mortgage company refuses to sign-off on Lentino’s tax-deferral request which has left Mr. Lentino in limbo. He is currently waiting to move to Medford’s senior housing. The fate Continue Reading

Startups focusing on aging have a home in new Kendall Square incubator

Agency, a new business incubator located in Kendall Square, is attracting an intergenerational mix of entrepreneurs who are working on projects that make aging less disruptive and more fulfilling for older adults. Agency wants to accelerate the velocity of progress with the aim of commercializing products and services to help the world’s aging populations and their families and care partners. For more information, follow our link to the Boston Globe. The name of Boston’s Commission on Affairs of the Elderly has been officially changed to the Age Strong Commission. By Robert Weisman | Boston Globe. CAMBRIDGE — Business incubators tend Continue Reading

Who are you calling senior? For older folks, some terms are fast becoming radioactive

As boomers age, many object to being labeled as “senior citizen” or “elderly” which convey the negative aspects of growing old. The AMA (American Medical Association) is following the lead of the American Geriatrics Society; both have adopted “older adults.” Others have shortened older adult to simply “olders” or “perennials” a sly nod to millennials. For the complete article, follow our link to the Boston Globe. The name of Boston’s Commission on Affairs of the Elderly has been officially changed to the Age Strong Commission. By Robert Weisman | Boston Globe. Jill Tapper knew she’d made a mistake at the Continue Reading

Older people don’t get enough help, study says

John Hopkins University released results from their recent study which focused on how older adults respond to changes in physical function. One third of older adults who live in the community, nearly 13 million seniors, have a substantial need for assistance with daily activities such as bathing, eating, getting dressed, using the toilet, transferring in and out of bed or moving around their homes. In addition to using assistive devices like canes, raised toilets and shower seats, the study showed increasing need for paid/unpaid help in the older population. Sixty percent of seniors surveyed used at least one device; this Continue Reading

When Can an Adult Child Be Liable for a Parent’s Nursing Home Bill?

Although a nursing home cannot require a child to be personally liable for their parent’s nursing home bill, there are circumstances in which children can end up having to pay. This is a major reason why it is important to read any admission agreements carefully before signing. Federal regulations prevent a nursing home from requiring a third party to be personally liable as a condition of admission. However, children of nursing home residents often sign the nursing home admission agreement as the “responsible party.” This is a confusing term and it isn’t always clear from the contract what it means. Continue Reading

Who is your support system as you age?

For most people, it is their children but those who are childless are faced with creating their own support network to help them negotiate housing, social-service and health care options in addition to legal and financial considerations. One of the first steps is for “elder orphans” should take in creating their support system is to hire an elder law lawyer who can draw up documents that will protect them if they become incapacitated. For more advice about how to plan for your later years, follow our link to the NYT article. Single? No Kids? Don’t Fret: How to Plan Care Continue Reading

Simple Spousal Case

Elderly client’s wife was in hospital due to failure to thrive and was being discharged to rehabilitation.  Concerned that his limited finances would be depleted when he would have to private pay for his wife’s care in a nursing home, he sought our firm’s assistance.  By working diligently with him to structure his assets, we were able to get him and his wife eligible for MassHealth within three weeks.  Our client was able to retain the maximum amount allowed for a community spouse, while also converting an insurance policy and an annuity to a Medicaid compliant annuity to generate a Continue Reading

Testamentary Trust

Children came to the office because their father was in rehab with an upcoming discharge to the nursing home, and their mom was in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.  The children were concerned about getting their father the appropriate long term care, while also trying to protect mom so she could remain in the community until she would have to go to long term care.  Our office began preparing a MassHealth application and structuring their assets to protect them for the community spouse.  While in rehab, our client began failing and had to be rushed to the hospital.  When Continue Reading