Most of us want to be remembered long after we pass away. We also wish to leave something behind to help out the next generation. As the end of our lives approach, we realize that accumulated blessings and wealth cannot be taken with us, but rather must be left behind. The idea of creating a will to designate exactly how you wish your assets  to be divided among your loved ones is not a new one. As many as three thousand years ago, cultures which were mentioned in the Hebrew Bible were creating some form of will. The Christian Bible also speaks of this practice. Eventually, in 16th century England wills would come to be written down and enabled land owners to pass down their real estate to the children. It is more important today than ever to take part in estate planning by creating a will to protect your property and your loved ones. If you are interested in creating a will, Attorney Tom R. Mullen of Quincy, Massachusetts can help.

Consider All Possibilities in Estate Planning

According to, failure to create the appropriate will can not only effect your loved ones Medicaid eligibility, it will also leave a huge financial burden on your loved ones. For example, if an older couple is creating an estate plan, and creates only a  simple will, and one of them is currently or may be entering a nursing home,  the family may make assumptions that the ‘sick’ person will be the first of the couple to die. While all of the ‘facts’ may point to this being the case, the ‘wrong’ person could die. This means that the person who is living in the nursing home may not be the first one to pass away. If the well spouse dies first, the one in the nursing home will end up inheriting everything and be disqualified for Medicaid and all the savings will then go to the nursing home.

 Medicaid Planning

It is crucial you consider Medicaid planning in your will. For example, if you choose to leave your entire estate to your husband or wife who is in an extended care facility, you could be doing them more harm than good. Often, a spouse will be approved for Medicaid, which will then pay all  the cost of an extended care facility. However, both Medicaid and Medicare can claim money from a settlement if  the recipient of either program prevails in a settlement or lawsuit . So, if your will leaves your estate to a loved one in an extended care facility, they will lose their Medicaid and be forced to pay for their care out of the settlement; or they could lose a great deal of the money from the settlement to a Medicaid lien.

Setting Up A Trust

As you can see, having a will is not the only protection  you may need for yourself and your loved ones. If you have the wrong kind of will, it can cause your family to be left with financial hardships which you never expected. If, instead of leaving everything to your loved one, you leave their inheritance in a trust for them, the trust  cannot effect their eligibility for Medicaid. A trust can be used to pay for any items or services that is not covered by Medicaid, but does not effect their coverage. If you need help with estate planning, drafting a will, or setting up a trust, give the law offices of Thomas R. Mullen a call today at 617-770-1050.

Thomas R. Mullen
Thomas R. Mullen has been an attorney since 1977 and has devoted his practice exclusively to elderlaw since 1988. He is nationally recognized as one of the foremost experts on Medicaid planning. His additional Practice areas include estate planning and trusts for disabled people, as well as assisting attorneys with Medicaid lien allocations and the Medicare Secondary Payer Act. In the Spring 2013 issue of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) Journal, Attorney Thomas R. Mullen of Quincy, Mass. was described by the Academy’s Massachusetts past president and law professor William J.Brisk as being “a prominent and innovative elderlaw attorney.”