BIG NEWS black stamp text on green backgroundAfter remaining relatively unchanged since 1965 (yes, 40+ years ago), Connecticut has replaced its old power of attorney (POA) laws and form with a new more powerful form and laws to ensure your wishes are honored.

This new law is so important and will have such a potentially great impact on you, that the Connecticut legislature passed the law in 2015 but gave us all until October 1, 2016 (its effective date) to get ready for it.

Should you revise your existing power of attorney? DEFINITELY!

If your POA was done prior to October 1st, 2016, it is still valid, but you won’t have all the powers and protections of the new law.

And if you don’t have a POA, now is the time to get one! Continue reading

 AdobeStock_86207800-300x158Note: For additional information on conservatorship, please read our introductory post, What Is a Conservatorship? and the follow up, Applying for Conservatorship in Connecticut.

Deciding to conserve a loved one is a complex and sometimes painful process. You want the best care and quality of life for the people you love, but it can be daunting to consider the intervention and support of external parties.

Because application for conservatorship requires the involvement of the court, it’s important to understand how the court evaluates your loved one’s situation and capacity as well as what means you have to appeal the decision the court makes.

Home DecoratingBy Melinda Otlowski, Accessible Design Consultants

You, like most Americans, probably hope to lead an independent and active life in your own home for as long as possible.

According to the AARP, 85 percent of those older than 50 desire to grow old in their own homes. This common desire is rooted in our deep-seated human needs for comfort, security, independence and identity. Not only does “aging in place” answer fundamental emotional needs, it also makes financial sense.

Staying in your home, even with the help of a caregiver or home aide, is typically
more economical than moving to an assisted living facility or nursing home. Continue reading

grandfather-on-the-porch-519288-mMany people believe that assisted living in Connecticut is out of reach for the average older adult, financially speaking, especially since our state is even pricier than other nearby states. But here’s some good news: the State of Connecticut supports several assisted living programs for individuals and couples with modest means.

According to the Department of Social Services’ website: “Assisted living bridges the gap between independent living and nursing homes. Assisted living is designed for people who want to live in a community setting and who need help with activities of daily living (ADLs), but who do not need as much care as they would receive at a nursing home.”

Why does the state want to help you stay out of a nursing home? Continue reading

New Car GiftWhen you die, someone is going to benefit from the use of your car. Wouldn’t it be nice to decide now exactly who that person should be?

The easiest way to transfer your car to someone you care about is to plan in advance. When registering a vehicle, you can designate a transfer-on-death (TOD) beneficiary, not unlike what you can do with a bank account.

How to designate a beneficiary

Simply complete the area reserved for this purpose on the reverse side of your registration certificate. If you do not have a registration certificate, or if you are registering a new vehicle, complete the Official Registration, Form H-13, and designate the Owner in Box 1 as “John Doe, Transfer on Death to Jane Doe.”

When you die, the transfer-on-death beneficiary need only bring a certified copy of your death certificate to the nearest Department of Vehicles office to have the registration transferred. Continue reading

Heart in woman hands. Love giving, care, health, protection concept

By Kathleen D. Tetreault

Family members of individuals with intellectual disabilities go to extraordinary lengths to provide their loved ones with proper supports, services, and care.  Establishing guardianship is often a necessary part of protecting the health and safety of individuals with intellectual disabilities.  Yet, while many people are generally familiar with the concept of guardianship, few know what guardianship of an individual with an intellectual disability actually entails. Continue reading

Driving CarHave you ever thought it might be nice to make a little extra money to supplement your retirement?

Maybe you need a bit more income just to make ends meet, or maybe you’re doing okay but wouldn’t mind having some room in your budget for nice-to-have treats like a special night out or a weekend away.

Many digital-savvy seniors have found fun and creative ways to earn this kind of additional money as participants in the sharing economy. Continue reading

AdobeStock_100981959-300x200By Paul T. Czepiga

Have you heard the news that wealthy business owners might soon see a bigger tax hit when they transfer ownership stakes to their children? Take a look at some headlines I’ve seen:

Treasury Department Targets Estate Tax Loophole for Family Businesses

IRS Estate-Tax Proposal Could Hit Wealthy Business Owners Where It Hurts

Recently proposed IRS regulations dealing with the special valuation rules of Internal Revenue Code sections 2701 to 2704 can severely restrict a taxpayer’s ability to achieve minority and lack-of-control valuation discounts with respect to the transfer of interests in many family-owned entities. Continue reading

Young carer walking with the elderly woman in the park
 Note: For introductory information on conservatorship, please read our initial post, What Is a Conservatorship?

While all of us wish that our loved ones might remain indefinitely self-sufficient and be able to live their lives with dignity, many of us will face the difficult situation of a loved one who is no longer able to care for his or herself.

The cause of such incapacity may be an illness or accident. It might be dementia or simply the decline of old age. You may find, one day, that your loved one is inconsistent about physical hygiene, unable to manage household finances, or making unwise decisions. If you see such signs, you may need to carefully consider the option of conservatorship.

stop waiting time for action act now dont waste time standing in a row for a wait list being impatient

By Kathleen Tetreault

The bleak state of our State is that many individuals with special needs are no strangers to “waiting lists” for vital supports and services in the community. For many, the term waiting list has become synonymous with “good luck and goodbye.”

But for those individuals who have fallen into the dark abyss of waiting, the Department of Justice has released a groundbreaking statement that shines a ray of hope.

The United States Department of Justice issued a powerful Statement of Interest in an Ohio case wherein individuals with disabilities sued the State for placing them on long waiting lists and for failing to provide supports in the community. Continue reading

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