Social Security Changes Coming 2021

Every October, the Social Security Administration (SSA) publishes upcoming changes to its social security program. The social security program is dynamic and impacts nearly 65 million people as of 2020.  In 2021, social security payments will grow by 1.3% and the changes made will take effect on January 1. These changes can impact your retirement age, how much you get paid per month, and more. It is good practice to create a
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Estate Planning Terms to Know

National Estate Planning Awareness Week was first established in 2008 to help the public gain a better understanding of the importance of estate planning. Estate planning is one of those things that everybody needs to do, yet only approximately half of Americans have an up-to-date estate plan in place. Regardless of your age or financial situation, you need estate planning to protect you, your family, and your assets should you
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Estate Planning During a Pandemic

Whether you are young or old, COVID-19 has us all thinking about our mortality and health more these days. This pandemic took us all by surprise, did you have your affairs in order before? According to one study, approximately 1/3 of all Americans did not have an up-to-date estate plan as of 2017. We expect and hope that number will rise in 2020. Now that we are all thinking about
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Aging in Place Tools and Technology for Seniors and Caregivers

Technology is central to 21st century life in America. It’s also becoming surprisingly popular among senior populations as tech companies target this growing market demographic. By 2030, AARP projects that close to 132 million Americans aged 50 or more will spend more than $84 billion annually on technology products. Today, 91 percent of people aged 50 or more are computer competent, and 94 percent speak positively about technology, saying that it
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Should I Add My Kids to My Bank Account?

Many clients walk into the Michaelson & Associates law firm saying that they want to leave their bank accounts to their children after death. The easiest solution might be to just make the children joint owners, but that is not always the best course of action.  The idea of making your kids joint account owners sounds better than it actually is. Yes, you will avoid probate court proceedings for the
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Why You Need a Will

Wills and trusts are an essential part of estate planning, and they should be an essential part of planning your life. Many of us like to focus on planning our careers, where we live, and our family lives. Planning the end of your life by completing a will is one important part you don’t want to skip, no matter how uncomfortable it might be.   What’s a Will? Your last
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Alzheimer’s Disease and What to Know for Your Estate Plan

Did you know that there are over 400 different types of dementia? The number of different types is staggering but the most common cause of dementia is due to Alzheimer’s disease. At least, that’s what the Alzheimer’s Association‘s published 2020 Facts and Figures reports. Other relatively common types of dementia include vascular, Lewy Body disease, frontotemporal dementia, and early-onset dementia. No matter the type, dementia can be traumatizing for both
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Isolation May Increase the Risk of Elder Abuse

Older adults represent some of the most at-risk American citizens because of COVID-19. Many of them are choosing to stay home to lower their risk of infection as the rest of the world begins to open up. With the coronavirus spreading throughout communities and no sign of a vaccine yet, elderly adults are choosing to put their health before their well-being. The American Bar Association (ABA) reports that an unfortunate
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When It’s Time To Designate a Power of Attorney

One of the biggest questions we may ask ourselves is who should we trust to manage our financial and healthcare decisions when we no longer have capacity to do so ourselves. This is a tough question for some because designating a power of attorney (POA) is a decision of trust, something not to be taken lightly. Otherwise known as an agent to your principal, a POA has the legal authority
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Michaelson & Associates Talks Estate Planning in Nevada on LV Channel 13 Morning Blend 

Did you catch Michaelson & Associates on Channel 13, Las Vegas Morning Blend? John Michaelson had the opportunity to speak more about estate planning and the importance of estate planning in Nevada. Some key takeaways from John’s interview include the following:  Estate planning is important for people of all ages.  Estate planning consists of saying what you want to happen and the type of care you want if something bad happens, which
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Caregiving for the elderly during Coronavirus

With the spread of coronavirus across the globe, many are worried about the health and safety of our most vulnerable populations. The elderly, immune-compromised, and sick individuals are vulnerable to severe illness from contracting COVID-19, which has many concerned with how to support and provide care for the elderly during a pandemic.   If you are providing care for, or living in close-proximity with, an elderly person, you want to take all the necessary precautions to keep yourself and that person safe. Keep the following tips from John Hopkins Medicine in mind:  Spending Time with & Providing Care for the Elderly
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Estate Planning for Blended Families

It is not uncommon for couples to divorce and remarry. People will often bring children into a new marriage from a prior marriage or union, and may choose to have kids in their new marriage as well.  This can be referred to as a blended family. Blended family estate planning is extremely important. Careful estate planning ensures that the needs of each spouse are met, as well as the needs
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Pandemic Challenges for the Elderly

Getting older when a pandemic strikes can be scary. Millions of people are over the age of 65, and over 50 million of them are right here in the United States. This age group faces special challenges as COVID_19 continues to spread. The following are a few pandemic challenges for elderly, and tips to keep in mind, as we navigate this unprecedented time together.   Pandemic Challenges for 60+ Year Old’s   Health Risk For the Elderly   Many of us know by now that elderly and immune
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COVID 19 Panic Has Americans of All Ages Thinking About Estate Planning

The COVID-19 virus has taken over our lives and many people are thinking about how they and their families are protected. With more people getting sick and/or experiencing the loss of loved ones, there has been an explosion in the numbers of Americans rushing to make their will and living trust. According to Caring.com, the rate of will and estate planning has been on the decline since 2017 but this trend
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Gen Xers Retirement Reality and Factors to Consider

Gen Xers are beginning to enter their 40s and 50s, which means that it’s time to start actively planning for retirement. When thinking about retirement, it’s not as cut and dry as ensuring a steady monthly income. There are many things to consider, including finances, investments, insurance policies, legal documents, living arrangements, and healthcare. Make a checklist for each category and planning to meet with your attorney can help you establish
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It Would Be An Honor To Receive Your Vote!

I am grateful to be nominated in 4 categories of the 2019 Best of Las Vegas sponsored by the Las Vegas Review Journal. The nominated categories are: Best Elder Law Best Estate Law Best Law Firm Best Customer Service It would be an honor to receive your vote for the 2019 Best of Las Vegas in each one of these categories. You can vote beginning TODAY, JULY 8, by CLICKING HERE.
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Health is Wealth (Even the Government Agrees)

If you are one of the millions of Americans looking for ways to improve your health this year, you’re not alone. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently released their updated Physical Activity Guideline for Americans. According to the latest guidelines, adults should include the following in their fitness routines: Aerobic exercise Strengthening exercise Balance training By using this three-pronged approach to health and wellness, Americans can improve
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Being a Caregiver for Others…and Yourself

Every year, millions of Americans find themselves in situations where they become much-needed caretakers for members of their family. For example, adults may find themselves needing to take care of aging parents, or grandparents may need to step in and take care of their grandchildren. These situations may arise unexpectedly and feel strange and scary. Caregivers can often experience a loss of freedom, coupled with stress and anxiety about the
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Special Needs Trusts – What You Need to Know

October has been designated as Special Needs Law Month with a grassroots effort to help people with disabilities and their families understand special needs planning and the resources available to them.  Special needs planning can involve special needs trusts, care management, advocacy to preserve educational or civil rights, public benefits such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid, and other important issues.  In general, a trust is created when property
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Points to Discuss with Your Aging Parent

Your parent is getting on in age, but you don’t have a clear idea if there is a plan in place for their care.  It is a difficult topic to broach; no one wants to talk about death and the financial realities that come with aging. Instead of having a proactive conversation early in a parent’s aging process most families have a reactive discussion under high levels of stress and
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Power of Attorney: Misconceptions and Myths Busted

Obtaining a durable power of attorney is one of the most important and powerful estate planning moves you can make. It allows someone who you appoint (referred to as your agent) to make decisions on your behalf in the event you become incapacitated. If you have no power of attorney, then your loved ones may not have the authority to make decisions on your behalf in case you become severely
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Artificial intelligence and aging

Artificial intelligence is here and senior technology is taking advantage. We have an ever-aging population and they are in need of consistent and competent health aides. In the United States, the healthcare industry employs over 4.5 million nursing aides and orderlies and home health aides and personal care aides. But it will not be enough to service the silver tsunami in this country. The United States Census Bureau found that
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NEWS FLASH! 2018 VA Pension Rule Changes

As your attorney, I’m sending you this alert so you can be aware of some critical changes in the way the Veterans Administration is handling eligibility for VA pension for wartime veterans or their surviving spouses.  You or someone you know, may be in need of these benefits. Depending on circumstances, action may be needed by October 18, 2018 to ensure eligibility. On September 18, the Veterans Administration (VA) published
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When It’s Okay To Take Your Social Security Benefit Early

Are you thinking about taking your social security benefit earlier rather than later? Contrary to popular myth, receiving your social security benefits earlier will not reduce the overall amount of your benefit over time. Your monthly payment may be smaller than if you had waited, but the amount paid to you overtime will be the same. To see how the numbers work out for yourself, check out the Social Security
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New Law Makes it Easy to Report Elder Financial Abuse

The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act was signed into law on May 24, 2018. There are a few important factors of the Act to keep in mind: There is a section in the Act that was once a stand-alone bill from Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine)– designed to encourage elder (age 65 and older) financial abuse reporting. The Act does not mandate that financial institutions report financial abuse,
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THE NEW 199A REGULATIONS AND YOUR BUSINESS

New Tax Savings Opportunities Wondering about the new Section 199A deduction in 2018? The deduction became effective on January 1, 2018, but guidance on how it would be calculated has been the topic of much speculation. Congress delegated the job to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and it’s finally coming to light. For months, we’ve had no specific guidance to work with but now things are becoming more clear. Tax
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Medicare and Medicaid: Unlocking the Mystery

Medicare and Medicaid have long been a mystery to many consumers. In fact, it can baffle and confuse even some of the smartest citizens. Like me, you might have thought, “I don’t need to worry about this right now.” However, it is never too early to gain a little understanding and awareness that just might help you help an aging loved one or yourself down the road. As the saying
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3 Reasons Veterans Should Have a Professional Advocate

The number of sad stories of veterans’ benefits getting tied up in the system is not only sad but startling. A quick internet search can lead to story after story of veterans who have struggled to receive the benefits that are owed to them. Robert DiCicco spent his final years battling through the red tape to get his benefits and pay for the bills to his assisted living facility. The
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Helpful Ways to Pay for Assisted Living Costs

Assisted living rent can vary from $2,000 to $5,000 monthly. Depending on what type of care your loved one needs, assisted living can be the most affordable solution when compared to a nursing home ($5,000 to $10,000 or more per month) or long-term in-home care. If closely monitored medical supervision is not necessary for your aging senior, assisted living might be the best financial choice. One payment strategy that has
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We Appreciate You!

“Throughout our history, older people have achieved much for our families, our communities, and our country.”                                                                                                            
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Appreciating Our Senior Citizens

National Senior Citizens Day is just around the corner! Tuesday, August 21 is the “official” National Senior Citizens Day – a holiday established in 1988 by President Reagan. Senior citizens provide so many benefits to our communities – they are engaged and informed politically, they volunteer, and they provide wisdom and guidance to younger members of our society. How will you show appreciation to the senior citizens in your life?
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Retirement Challenges Facing Women

For women, securing enough retirement income can be a daunting proposition. Generally speaking, women face two significant hurdles to overcome to achieve a comfortable flow of retirement income. One hurdle involves longevity, and the second deals with earning power. Women have a longer life expectancy than men do in the US. The Social Security Administration has cited that “a women who turns 65 today can expect to live, on average,
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The ABLE Act and Helping Individuals with Special Needs

ABLE Act and Special Needs Estate Planning The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act was signed into law in December of 2014. The purpose of the Act is to provide individuals and families the ability to finance disability needs tax-free. The savings the ABLE Act can provide is similar to the 529 education savings plan. The ABLE Act allows families to save up to $100,000 in a special account
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Life After A Dementia Diagnosis

Many elderly people who are diagnosed with dementia are unprepared for future care. Once this type of diagnosis is received, preparing for the future can no longer be avoided. If you or someone you love has received a dementia diagnosis, begin immediately to discuss and seek guidance for future care. For help in implementing the steps that need to be taken and for developing a plan, seek the guidance of
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Prenups: Not Just For Movie Stars

George and Ginny had a great marriage, with an extended family to whom they wanted to leave everything when they passed. Unfortunately, Ginny was then diagnosed with cancer. She began to worry: What could happen if she died before George did, and George remarried? Or vice versa? What if the second spouse started pushing to get what Ginny and George had intended would be their children’s inheritance? Neither Ginny nor
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What to Include in a Letter of Instruction

A letter of instruction can be a beneficial piece in estate planning. It is an informal document that will give your loved ones important information about personal and financial matters after your death. Letters of instruction are not legally binding and do not replace your need for a will or a living trust, however it can be a nice complement to those documents. The informal nature allows you to create
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States Brace for Baby Boomer Retirement Age Challenges

There are demographic and cultural shifts occurring in the United States. The baby boomer generation continues to “gray” the country and is changing the way individual states set budgets and health care policies. More attention will be paid to the needs of the post age 50 generation(s). Changing attitudes towards working past the age of 65 has taken root in this country and “retirement age” does not necessarily mean a
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Your Doctor Left Your Health Plan – Now What?

Going to the doctor is more than just casual small talk with a stranger. Often, you must explain your ailment quickly and succinctly, trust that your doctor has your best interests at heart and will keep your confidentiality; and make yourself vulnerable and talk about health issues that may be uncomfortable. Having a good relationship with your doctor can alleviate all these issues and can even increase the quality of
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Planning For The Financial Future Of A Troubled Adult Child

Your 3-Step Guide to Creating an Informed Estate Plan Are you concerned about any of your adult children? Estate planning can pose extra challenges for families with adult children struggling with addiction, marital issues, or irresponsibility with money. The last thing you want is for your wealth to end up having a negative impact on your child, or to see them squander their inheritance. Many parents are concerned about what
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Help for Seniors Who Fall Victim to Abuse

In October 2017, President Trump signed into law the Elder Abuse Prevention and Prosecution Act. This bill was designed to combat the growing epidemic of the elderly being taken advantage of financially and abused physically. A study conducted by the National Council on Aging indicates that approximately 1 in 10 Americans aged 60 or older have experienced some form of elder abuse. Although, this number is likely higher according to
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3 Tips for Traveling with Disabilities

Welcome to our blog! With Summer here, and vacations on our mind, we wanted to share some tips for those traveling with disabilities to make your travels go more smoothly. Traveling with disabilities or accessible traveling can seem, for some, like an overwhelming task with so many extra considerations. However, it doesn’t have to be if the right research, planning, and preparations are done ahead of time. There are even
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DON’T LEAVE THE LAST CHAPTER BLANK

Recently, my daughter begged me to read the same book she was reading. I resisted for a while because I thought I didn’t have time and I probably wouldn’t enjoy the book. Then she got her mother to take her to the library and check out the audio CD version of the book. She told me I would love it and she was so cute I couldn’t resist. In the
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COMMERCE TAX

As you may know, the state of Nevada has implemented a “Commerce Tax” on all entities engaging in business in the State (not personal trusts), for the privilege of doing business in Nevada. In general, if your business earns primarily passive income (interest, dividends, etc.), or less than $4M of business income, you will not owe anything. However, you are still required to both register your entity (providing various types
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14TH ANNUAL SOUTHERN NEVADA ALZHEIMER’S EDUCATION CONFERENCE

Caring for our loved ones can be overwhelming. It is more difficult when that loved one has dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease. We invite you to attend the 14th Annual Southern Nevada Alzheimer’s Education Conference on April 27, 2017 starting at 7:30am (registration) and ending at 4pm. The conference will be held at the Henderson Convention Center, 200 S. Water Street, Henderson, NV 89015. Experts presenting will be: Dr. Charles Bernick
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2016 VETERAN’S DAY PARADE – LAS VEGAS, NEVADA

We are proud to be a volunteer with the Veteran’s Action Group (VAG) responsible for the planning of the nationally acclaimed Las Vegas Veteran’s Day parade. The parade takes place on November 11, 2016 from 9 to 5 and the event is free. It’s a great event for families and a chance to celebrate our veterans. Save the date! November 11, 2016 – We hope you will join us for
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THE 2016 VETERANS DAY PARADE – A GREAT WAY TO SAY “THANK YOU”

There are many things that have brought me personal satisfaction over the years. First and foremost, 22 years of marriage to the love of my life and amazing mother of our four beautiful children, Gina. And, if measured in the level of joy, Im a very wealthy man based on the joy my children give me every day. In helping families, seniors and veterans, I get a lot of personal
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HELP FOR VETERANS AND THEIR SPOUSES

The overwhelming concerns of veterans and families who come through our doors seems to be: “will I be able to pay for long-term care,” and “will I be able to take care of my spouse and family?” Veterans have served our country, worked, raised their families and are now confronting the realities of declining health and the financial burden it can put on a family’s savings and resources.  One benefit
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FAILURE TO LAUNCH NEW KIDS

I have noticed lately more than ever how many children live off their parents. In many cases, the parents are afraid to cutoff aid to a child who lives at home because they’re afraid they will hurt or lose the relationship. In almost every case, it seems like the situation could have been avoided with some thoughtful expectation setting, in writing, in advance. If the child would have signed off
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FAILURE TO LAUNCH KIDS

Set expectations about financial aid early in writing to avoid long term dependency I have noticed lately more than ever how many children live off their parents. In many cases, the parents are afraid to cutoff aid to a child who lives at home because they’re afraid they will hurt or lose the relationship. In almost every case, it seems like the situation could have been avoided with some thoughtful
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SHOULD YOU DISINHERIT A CHILD?

Most parents choose to leave their estates equally to their children. But sometimes, parents intentionally choose to not leave anything to a child. There may be what the parents consider to be a legitimate reason: one child has been more financially successful than the others; not wanting a special needs child to lose government benefits; or not wanting to leave an inheritance to an irresponsible or drug-dependent child. Sometimes a
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