What to Bring to Our Long-Term Care Conversation
© 2012, 2015, Douglas D. Germann, Sr. Professional Corporation
- Your list of questions. Get out a sheet of paper now and title it “My Questions.” Put down what first comes to mind. Add to it as things come up from now until our meeting.
- List of important people: spouse, children (living or dead), grandchildren. For each of these we will need full name, middle initial, date of birth, address, and any special situation, such as if they are on disability or receiving Medicaid or SSI, or if they have a special medical or other condition.
- Birth certificate and photo ID.
- Proof of marital status: marriage certificate, divorce decree, death certificate.
- Proof of date of admission to hospital and nursing home, such as the admission face sheet from the nursing home.
- Power of Attorney documents, both financial and medical.
- Social Security Card.
- Medicare Card.
- Supplemental Insurance Card, front and back, and proof of the monthly premium.
- Names and addresses of all your physicians.
- The original Will and all amendments (called “Codicils”) to it.
- The original Trust and all amendments to it.
- Bank statements for all accounts that have your elder’s name in any fashion. For instance, his or her separate checking account statements will be needed, as well as the ones he or she had joint with a spouse, and the ones he or she had “pay on death” or “in trust for” another person.
- Brokerage stock, bond, and mutual fund account statements that had your elder’s name in any fashion. Also bring copies of all US Savings bonds.
- Annuity statement that had your elder’s name in any fashion.
- Deeds for real estate that had your elder’s name in any fashion.
- Trust account statements for any trust your elder set up or any in which he or she is a beneficiary.
- Patents, trademarks or copyrights your elder owned.
- Pension, profit sharing and 401(k) statements.
- IRA statements.
- Life insurance policies covering the life of your elder, whether he or she owned them, or his or her spouse or a child owned them, or even if a trust or a corporation owned them.
- Vehicle titles which had your elder’s name in any fashion.
- Latest financial statements for any business in which your elder had any interest.
- Information about any amounts owed to your elder by other persons, such as for money lent to his or her children or grandchildren.
- List of debts owed by your elder, including possible final bills to doctors, hospitals, ambulance services, nursing homes, and the like.
- Court documents for any law suits or estates in which your elder was involved, whether he or she was suing someone, or someone was suing him or her. Include here any law suits you suspect might soon be filed, such as from recent accidents.
- Nursing home resident fund account statement from the nursing home. I recommend you not maintain such an account.
- Please also consult the list of assets in Six Steps Checklist for other ideas.
- Life insurance policies and annuities owned by applicant, spouse, or both. (Immediately contact the insurance company to obtain cash surrender values of each policy, in writing. Values must be for the date of institutionalization. This may take time and could delay Medicaid eligibility and cause unnecessary expense.)
- Prepaid funeral and burial plan: we need copies of the list of goods and services, the front and back of all purchase documents, and the deed to your burial plot.
- List of gross Social Security monthly benefits. A “Statement of Benefits” is received in the mail annually. This is not the end of the year 1099 that is provided for tax purposes. This is a letter showing the gross monthly benefit and showing the deduction for Medicare premium(s), if any. The amount shown on your bank statement does not prove the “gross” benefit amount. (Social Security Administration: 1-800-772-1213; you can print out the statement of benefits here: http://ssa.gov/myaccount/).
- Proof of all gross pension benefits.
- Proof of monthly Veterans benefits. (Veterans Administration: 1-800-827-1000).
- All other income sources and amounts (rental income, employment, unemployment compensation, interest, dividends, trust income, etc.).
- Evidence of rental property expenses of ownership (taxes, insurance, utilities, maintenance, interest on mortgage payments, etc.).
- A budget showing average monthly expenses for the at-home spouse. Be sure to include these:
- Rent or mortgage payment (for mortgage, include a statement showing the breakdown between interest and principal)
- Real Estate taxes
- Insurance: homeowner’s, tenant, health, long-term care, prescription drug
- Utilities: gas, water, electric, cable
- Copies of your 1040 tax returns, pp 1 & 2, from the last 6 years.
- List of all gifts you have made to anyone in the last 5 years. This includes birthday, holiday, graduation, wedding, and charitable gifts.
- The Medicaid applicant must be in a Medicaid Certified bed. Please check with the nursing home to make sure this is true.
- Anything else you think will help us get a complete picture.
Don’t worry if you cannot gather all these materials for the first conference. There will be time to get them later. The most important is number 1.
We will take things one step at a time. Nothing need be overwhelming.
Here is an outline of what we will talk about in our first conference.