The information discussed and/or provided is not intended as legal advice and persons should not rely on anything posted on this blog. Please also be advised that no attorney-client relationship is established until the firm has been contacted by telephone and an appointment made to discuss your situation with us.

Powers of Attorney and Dementia

March 19, 2018

People who have full mental capacity can change their estate planning documents at any time by executing new documents. The reasons for creating new documents may range from new personal preferences to fixing technical problems. In time, however, an individual may lose legal capacity to execute new documents.

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Prenuptial Agreements and Second Marriages

March 12, 2018

Prenuptial agreements can be important planning tools for any couple planning to get married. However, for people who have children from previous relationships, a prenuptial agreement can help ensure that their childrens’ inheritance is protected.

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Choosing a Care Facility

March 2, 2018

When choosing a care facility for yourself or a loved one, there are a number of factors that should be considered. A proper level of professional care and appropriate expertise at caring for people with particular conditions are extremely important considerations, but those should be a starting point when choosing a care facility.

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Letter of Intent

February 19, 2018

A potential source of worry for parents of special needs children is what will happen to their child when they are no longer able to care for them. A special needs trust can provide financial support and name trustees who will oversee care in the future, but does not provide the day-to-day information that would allow future caregivers to properly fulfill their duties.

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Home Caregiving

February 9, 2018

Professional caregivers, assisted care facilities, and nursing homes can become necessary costs at some point in life. However, individuals can seek to avoid these expenditures for as long as possible with the help of an amateur home caregiver, such as a spouse or adult child.

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Living Wills and Health Care Powers of Attorney

January 24, 2018

Living wills and health care powers of attorney are both documents that can allow individuals to direct future health care decisions in case of end-of-life planning or a prolonged incapacity.

A living will generally provides guidance to health care providers and family members about what type of health care an individual wants in certain situations. The instructions provided in a living will can vary anywhere from a basic, broad statement of intent to specific instructions of what to in different situations. A living will can also state wishes not to be subject to certain types of treatments due to moral beliefs or other personal preferences. The limitation of a living will is that certain circumstances may arise that are, either not listed in the living will, or where different interpretations of the language in the living will could apply.

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Alzheimer’s Disease and Legal Capacity

January 16, 2018

Alzheimer’s disease has increased in prevalence in recent years. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in three seniors will die of Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. Alzheimer’s disease is currently the sixth leading cause of death for Americans and the fifth leading cause of death for Americans sixty-five or older.

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How Does an Asset Preservation Trust Work?

January 3, 2018

At a basic level an asset preservation trust is a device that protects assets from counting towards the Medicaid asset cap for nursing home eligibility. The assets in the trust, in addition to the already Medicaid exempt assets, are then shielded from being used for nursing home costs.

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Alternatives to Guardianship

December 18, 2017

Guardianship is a tool to protect an individual when they are not able to manage their own affairs. Guardianship, however, involves taking away an individual’s rights to make their own decisions. Therefore, guardianship should only be used as a last resort.

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Duties of a Trustee

December 11, 2017

Acting as trustee of a trust is a significant responsibility. People should take care when selecting individuals to be trustees or accepting the role of a trustee.

At a basic level, the trustee manages trust assets for the benefit of the trust beneficiaries according to the terms of the trust.

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Martha C. Brown & Associates, LLC assist clients with Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, St. Charles County, Jefferson County, Franklin County and the surrounding areas including Arnold, Ballwin, Barnhart, Bellefontaine Neighbors, Black Jack, Bonne Terre, Brentwood, Bridgeton, Cedar Hill, Chesterfield, Clayton, Crestwood, Creve Coeur, Crystal City, Des Peres, DeSoto, Ellisville, Farmington, Fenton, Festus, Ferguson, Florissant, Fredericktown, Frontenac, Hazelwood, Herculaneum, High Ridge, Hillsboro, House Springs, Imperial, Kirkwood, Ladue, Lake St. Louis, Manchester, Maplewood, Maryland Heights, Mehlville, Normandy, O'Fallon, Olivette, Pacific, Pevely, Richmond Heights, St. Ann, St. Charles, St. Clair, St. Peters, Ste. Genevieve, Sunset Hills, Town & Country, University City, Union, Valley Park, Washington, Webster Groves, Wentzville , Wildwood.