Knoxville Elder Law Lawyer

Elder Law Lawyer Knoxville, TN

Elder Law Lawyer Knoxville, TN - Old and young holding hands on light backgroundA Knoxville, TN elder law lawyer from Carpenter & Lewis PLLC can help elderly people with various legal matters, including long-term care planning, estate planning, retirement and older adult abuse. This legal professional can give senior citizens peace of mind and act as their advocate. Here are a few good reasons to hire an elder law attorney.

Problems with Medicare and Medicaid

Once you reach 65, you may be automatically eligible for Medicare. However, in order to qualify for Medicaid, you have to make under a certain income each year. It is possible that you may qualify for both programs. However, there are strict guidelines for dual eligibility. An experienced attorney can help you understand the restrictions and determine if you qualify for both programs or not.

Experiencing Elder Abuse

Unfortunately, elder abuse is more common than many people think. Some caregivers take advantage of elderly people because they may be more vulnerable. Elder abuse may include physical, emotional and financial abuse and neglect. Elder abuse can occur in many different settings, from nursing homes to elderly people’s homes, and may happen due to caregiver burnout, understaffing, poor pay or inadequate training. No one deserves to experience abuse. If you or a family member has endured elder abuse, you may want to speak to an attorney about your legal options.

Getting Long-Term Care

Medical care can get more costly when you get older, especially if you develop a chronic illness. You may even have to stay in a nursing home, which can easily cost thousands of dollars a year. If you are concerned that your health insurance will not cover all of these costs, you may want to consult a Knoxville elder law attorney. He or she can provide you with more information about long-term care and advise you on how to pay for it. For example, you may use your pension, savings or long-term care insurance to fund the care.

Creating an Estate Plan

Estate planning is important for people of all ages, including senior citizens. A proper estate plan ensures that your final wishes are carried out and your loved ones are taken care of. However, establishing an estate plan can be complicated and confusing. You do not want to risk making a mistake. That is another good reason to contact an elder law attorney. He or she can help you establish a valid estate plan that clearly states your wishes. Your attorney can give you sound legal advice and answer all of your questions.

Getting Military Benefits

If you are a veteran, you may be eligible for additional benefits as you get older. You may have sustained serious injuries in battle or have suffered emotional injuries after the fact. An experienced attorney can inform you about the benefits you may be entitled to and help you go after them.

If you need assistance with any elder law matters, you may want to schedule a consultation with a Knoxville elder law attorney from Carpenter & Lewis PLLC to discuss your concerns.

Comprehensive Legal Services For Seniors

Your Knoxville, TN elder law lawyer can help you build the best future possible for yourself, and for your loved ones. At Carpenter & Lewis PLLC, we understand that planning for the future and ensuring continued autonomy over financial and health decisions is crucial for our senior clients. Our dedicated attorneys are committed to providing tailored advice and comprehensive solutions that respect the dignity and intentions of each individual.

What Is Elder Law?

Elder law encompasses a variety of legal matters that affect older or disabled individuals. The primary aim is to assist our clients in achieving the best quality of life by securing their health and wealth as they age. This field combines parts of several types of law, including elements of real estate, trust and estate planning, and family law, which are relevant to the issues facing elderly populations.

Why Elder Law May Be Necessary

As one advances in age, certain legal issues become more prominent. Issues such as determining eligibility for Medicaid to cover long-term care costs or executing powers of attorney that delegate decision-making in the event of incapacity become critical. Without proper legal advice, you might find yourself unable to manage your affairs or protect your assets from unexpected medical costs.

Moreover, elder law aims to provide peace of mind for both the individuals planning their estates and their loved ones. Through comprehensive estate planning, including wills, trusts, and advance directives, our lawyers ensure that your assets are protected and your wishes are respected.

How We Can Help

Unlike other law firms, our team focuses solely on estate and transactional law. This means we’re specialists when it comes to elder law, and ensuring your last wishes are honored – whatever they may be. From drafting wills and trusts to more complex procedures like applying for Medicaid or establishing legal guardianship, our attorneys are here to assist with all your elder law needs.

We take pride in our ability to offer compassionate and effective counsel, helping our clients to maintain their independence and ensure their wishes are carried out. Whether you are looking to plan for your future needs or facing an immediate legal concern, we’re here to provide the reliable legal support you require.

Planning For Peace Of Mind

Estate planning is a significant part of elder law and involves preparing for the management of one’s estate during life and after death. Our attorneys help you understand the various options available for protecting your estate, including the creation of trusts to avoid probate or the drafting of living wills that specify your wishes regarding medical treatment.

The goal is to avoid the financial burdens that often accompany aging and illness, ensuring that your assets are utilized as you see fit, rather than being consumed by taxes or medical expenses. Our thorough understanding of state and federal laws enables us to offer strategies that minimize exposure to these risks.

Reach Out Today For Specialized Support

At Carpenter & Lewis PLLC, our team is standing by to support you as you build a better tomorrow. Get in touch with us today, and see how an elder law attorney from our office can help.

5 Estate Planning Strategies To Minimize Taxes For Seniors

Estate planning is crucial for seniors looking to preserve their wealth and ensure a smooth transition of assets to their heirs. Minimizing taxes is a key component of this process. If you’re worried about your tax burden after retirement and into your Golden Years, turn to an experienced Knoxville, TN, estate planning lawyer from Carpenter & Lewis PLLC to help you explore your estate planning options.

1. Gifting Assets During Lifetime

One of the simplest ways to reduce estate taxes is by gifting assets to beneficiaries during your lifetime. The IRS allows an annual exclusion for gifts, which, as of 2024, is $17,000 per recipient. By regularly gifting up to this amount to multiple recipients, seniors can significantly reduce the size of their taxable estate. Moreover, these gifts can appreciate outside of the senior’s estate, further minimizing potential estate taxes.

2. Establishing A Trust

Trusts are versatile tools in estate planning that offer both control over asset distribution and tax benefits. There are various types of trusts, but two that are particularly useful for minimizing taxes are:

  • Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT): By placing a life insurance policy in an ILIT, the death benefits are removed from the taxable estate. This can significantly reduce estate taxes while providing beneficiaries with tax-free proceeds.
  • Grantor Retained Annuity Trust (GRAT): A GRAT allows seniors to transfer appreciating assets at a reduced gift tax cost. The grantor receives an annuity for a specified term, and any remaining assets pass to beneficiaries, potentially free of additional gift and estate taxes.

3. Charitable Giving

Seniors can reduce their taxable estate by making charitable contributions during their lifetime or through their will. Setting up a charitable trust, such as a Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) or Charitable Lead Trust (CLT), can offer both income tax deductions and estate tax reductions. A CRT allows the donor to receive income for life or a specified term, with the remainder going to charity, while a CLT provides the charity with income for a period before transferring the remaining assets to beneficiaries.

4. Family Limited Partnerships (FLP)

A Family Limited Partnership (FLP) can help seniors manage and transfer their business or investment assets efficiently. By transferring assets to an FLP, seniors can retain control over the partnership while reducing the taxable value of their estate. Discounts for lack of marketability and minority interests can lower the value of transferred assets for gift tax purposes. This strategy can significantly reduce estate taxes while keeping assets within the family.

5. Utilizing The Estate Tax Exemption

The federal estate tax exemption is a powerful tool in minimizing estate taxes. As of 2024, the exemption amount is $12.92 million per individual. Proper planning can ensure that seniors fully utilize this exemption. For married couples, the portability provision allows the surviving spouse to use the deceased spouse’s unused exemption, effectively doubling the amount that can be shielded from estate taxes.

Your Trusted Knoxville Elder Law Lawyers

Effective estate planning for seniors involves a combination of strategies to minimize taxes and maximize the value of their assets for their beneficiaries. Contact an experienced Knoxville elder law lawyer from  Carpenter & Lewis PLLC to incorporate these strategies into your estate plan.

Carpenter & Lewis Probate Attorney Consultation:

For a consultation with one of the probate attorneys at Carpenter & Lewis, please call (865) 690-4997 or you may prefer to send an e-mail to: [email protected]. Consultations are by appointment only.

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    10413 Kingston Pike, Suite 200

    Knoxville, Tennessee 37922

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