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Asset protection planning overlaps with Estate Planning. It often involves similar legal theories and areas of the law. Asset protection planning involves the same transactions and legal structures that are used in traditional Estate Planning.
Asset protection is derived from a combination of bankruptcy law, tort law,
debtor/creditor law, business law and property law. In its most simple terms, asset protection is determining the rights of potential creditors and manipulating ones assets to make their claims more difficult to pursue and their remedies more difficult to satisfy.
Estate Planning is a unique area of law concerned with issues of personal well-being, property rights and taxation. Estate Planning combines state and local property laws; state fiduciary and probate laws; and federal and state taxation.
An Estate Planning Attorney's duty is to properly explain these often complex bodies of law and provide understandable options designed to accomplish the client's stated objectives.
Arizona is home to a significant Senior population that includes permanent residents as well as winter visitors. Modern medicine and better living conditions are helping to extend human life expectancies. With longer lives, we are faced with unforeseen financial issues and the cost of long-term care skyrocketing.
Ideally, this financial burden can be minimized with a proper funding source, such as long-term care insurance or wealth accumulation. For those individuals and families who are unable to obtain adequate long-term care insurance and do not have sufficient assets to pay for the care, state assistance may be available.
The Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System Is the state organization designed to oversee the Arizona Medicaid program known as Arizona Long Term Case Systems (ALTCS). The ALTCS program is designed to assist those in need of either full nursing home care or home and community based services to assist those people who would otherwise require full nursing home care.
There are three major components to ALTCS eligibility. Each applicant must demonstrate a Medical, Income and Resource necessity. All three components must be met simultaneously and continuously for an applicant to receive benefits.
Like many governmental programs, navigating the bureaucracy can be a frustrating experience. Benedict and Martin provides legal advise and assistance for pre-application transactions. In addition, we work with the foremost expert ALTCS consultants to ensure eligibility and compliance.
In simple terms, Probate is the legal process of paying the last expenses and debts of a decedent and then distributing the remaining assets to the people entitled to receive the property according to the terms of the decedents Last Will and Testament or the state statues if the person died without a Will.
The legal process of Probate is concerned only with Probatable Assets. These Probatable Assets are assets titled in the name of the decedent.
When a person dies, his or her estate needs to be collected and managed. Estate administration involves gathering the assets of the estate, paying the decedent's debts, and distributing the remaining assets. Without a basic understanding of the estate administration process, the whole experience can be pretty overwhelming.
In order to encourage people to assume the risk of owning and operating a business, state laws provide limited personal liability for debts and claims against a business entity. The laws vary depending the type of business entity and the nature of the claim, however, the theory is that if the business is properly formed and operated, an individual owner does not risk his or her personal assets for business obligations.
Partner, John Martin