If you’re in one of the countless estate planning practices that has seen a drop-off in interest over the last few years, you’re not alone. With the increase in the estate tax exemptions and the proliferation of online document vendors, many estate planners’ practices have gotten stagnant or harder to maintain. This has led to huge interest in adding Medicaid planning to an existing estate planning practice.
Most people in need of long-term care planning services reach out first to the estate planner that helped them craft their will, trust and powers of attorney. More often than not, the estate planner chooses to pass those cases on to a Medicaid planner instead of helping the clients themselves – missing out on critical business and often losing the client relationship.
The biggest reason many estate planners don’t do Medicaid planning is the complexity of the long-term care Medicaid eligibility rules and the high stakes of not getting the planning right. That risk is real, but can be heavily mitigated if you want to add a vibrant and growing need to your estate planning practice.
In most cases, long-term care Medicaid planning is done in a crisis situation where there is an active need to reposition assets to minimize the exposure to the Medicaid spend down. The art of Medicaid planning starts with a firm understanding of both the spenddown rules, asset classifications, and allowable transfers. Most Medicaid planners do not have the time to apprentice newcomers into the field because anyone doing this kind of work has more clients than they have time to help them all.
There is a huge need for more Medicaid planners and a great opportunity if you are looking to add Medicaid planning to your practice.