Many believe Sweetheart Wills and Trusts will provide for their spouse after they are gone. But, are they the best option when thinking long term? What happens to the life savings when the surviving spouse enters a nursing care facility? In this Elder Law Minute, Wes Coulson discusses the problems with Sweetheart Wills and Trusts and how leaving your estate for each other, rather than to each other, through Medicaid sensitive estate planning may be a better option.
Sweetheart Wills and Trusts: Are they the best option?
Hi, I’m Wes Coulson and this is your elder law and estate planning minute. I’m going to hit you with the shocking observation that I believe that the great majority of older married couples have it exactly wrong in their estate plans. Most have what we call Sweetheart Wills or Sweetheart Trusts, when the first of them dies everything goes to the other one. The problem with that is if the one who lives longer winds up being in a nursing home, their entire combined life savings can be lost to that one’s care costs. We can fix that, and you should, through something called Medicaid sensitive estate planning. You want to leave your estate for each other rather than to through a special type of trust that is set up so that it doesn’t count in determining the eligibility for Medicaid of the surviving spouse. If you are an older married coupled, this is something that you really need to think about and talk to us about. Thanks.
For more about estate planning for married couples, visit these articles:
- Elder Law Minute: Misconceptions about Wills
- Safeguarding Your Estate Plan
- Medicaid Planning for Married Couples
Coulson Elder Law is dedicated to providing families in the St. Louis area with their Elder Law needs. Our practice areas include Asset Preservation Planning, Veterans Benefits, Medicaid Eligibility, Alzheimer’s Planning, Special Needs Planning, Estate Planning and more. We understand the financial challenges you may face as you and your loved ones grow older. At Coulson Elder Law, our clients’ well-being is our number one priority. For immediate help, call (877)995-6876 or Contact Us and we will get in touch as soon as possible.