A U.S. district court held that a claim by Medicaid applicants against New Jersey officials for wrongly denying their applications is barred by the Eleventh Amendment because it would require the state to pay retroactive benefits. Radogna v. Connolly (U.S. Dist. Ct., D. N.J., No. 1:16-cv-5477 (NLH/KMW), Aug. 24, 2018). Dominic Rodogna and Solomon Krupka both.. read more →

V.S. is a nursing home resident; her adult son is her legal guardian, and she was represented by legal counsel. V.S.’s authorized representative submitted a Medicaid application with the Bergen County Board of Social Services (BCBSS) on her behalf. In response, BCBSS requested information verifying the information on her application, including several months of bank.. read more →

For additional information concerning NJ elder law and special needs planning visit: NJ Elder Law and Estate Planning Services read more →

New Jersey recently changed state law governing “refundable” entrance fee agreements used by Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs). State law limits the amount of time that CCRCs are permitted to retain “refundable” entrance fees after a resident vacates a facility due to relocation or death. Until recently, although New Jersey law required CCRCs to repay.. read more →

In 1998, Joan McFadden executed two powers of attorney (POAs) and a Living Will-Durable Health Care Power appointing John McFadden, her nephew, as her agent and attorney in fact, and Mary Sexton, her niece and John’s sister, as her alternative agent and attorney-in-fact. The two POAs stated that they would become effective upon the following.. read more →

After a trial court, expressing its disagreement with the legislative policy underlying special needs trusts, placed only a portion of the net settlement proceeds of a lawsuit brought on behalf of a severely disabled person into a special needs trust and ordered the remaining funds be paid directly to the disabled person, resulting in the.. read more →

An Appeals Court affirmed an agency decision denying a Medicaid applicant’s request for a fair hearing because it was filed more than seven months after a denial notice was sent advising him he had twenty days to request a fair hearing, even though the notice was sent directly to the applicant rather than to his.. read more →

Caring for a loved one who is sick or disabled? Learn more about obtaining a New Jersey state identification card for your loved one from this article published in the August 13, 2018 edition of the Star-Ledger newspaper. The article is reproduced in full below. If you do not have a driver’s license, a New.. read more →

Almost every year for the past 10 years, since 2008, reporters from the “60 Minutes” television show interviewed Mike and Carol Daly. Mike and Carol have been married for 54 years. Carol was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease, and Mike is her full-time caregiver husband. Laughter, love and duty still hold the couple together as Carol’s world.. read more →

A.F. is a quadriplegic as a result of an accident that occurred 20 years ago. She is totally disabled and needs personal assistance to perform all activities of daily living. For many years, A.F. has relied upon Medicaid benefits to provide her with the assistance she desperately needs. Under regulations, the Medicaid agency must re-determine.. read more →

A New Jersey appeals court ruled that a Medicaid applicant who began paying her daughter after the daughter provided two years of free caregiving did not rebut the presumption that a transfer of assets to a relative who previously provided services for free is an uncompensated transfer of assets for Medicaid purposes. E.B. v. Division of.. read more →

For additional information concerning special needs trusts and disability planning, visit: NJ Special Needs Trusts and Disability Planning For additional information concerning VA compensation and pension benefits, visit: VA Compensation and Pension Benefits read more →

At the time of Carol Rankins’ death in 2015, she had been married to Clyde Rankins for 28 years. She had one adopted daughter and two daughters from a prior relationship. The decedent’s surviving spouse was granted letters of administration of her intestate estate. One of her surviving daughters, Ursula, later filed a complaint seeking.. read more →

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A tenancy by the entirety is a form of joint property ownership, available only to spouses, that is created when a husband and wife take title to real or personal property “under a written instrument designating both their names as husband and wife.”  Case law has recognized that property held as tenants by the entirety.. read more →

The decedent was killed in a motor vehicle accident. After his death, his father was appointed as personal representative of his estate, to administer the non-probate estate and to prosecute a wrongful death action. Plaintiff was the biological mother of the decedent’s two sons. She never married the decedent, and she raised the children on.. read more →

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides two (2) types of monetary benefit programs for veterans. These monetary benefit programs are separated into benefits for (1) service-connected disabilities and (2) non-service-connected disabilities. The primary benefit for service-connected disabilities is the VA “compensation” benefit; the primary benefit for non-service- connected disabilities is the VA “pension” benefit… read more →

John F. McGrail, Jr. died intestate in 2016. His uncle, William J. McGrail, Jr., then filed a complaint against his nephew John’s estate, claiming ownership of a classic car that was part of that estate. The uncle had entered a nursing home in Maryland in 2009. He claimed that, after he entered the nursing home,.. read more →

Donald D. Vanarelli, Esq. (https://vanarellilaw.com/) participated in the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education’s “2018 Elder Law in a Day” Seminar held on July 11, 2018 at the New Jersey Law Center in New Brunswick, NJ. Mr. Vanarelli provided the “Case Law Update: The Year In Review” – a review of the cases decided.. read more →

The decedent had five children, and his will divided his residuary estate among them. He left 25% of the residuary estate to his daughter Eileen. He also directed that Eileen’s bequest was to include the family home, which was to be a credit toward her bequest; in the event that the “total net estate” was.. read more →

Reversing decisions of trial and appellate courts, a divided California Supreme Court ruled that judges can’t order Yelp Inc., the online ratings site, to remove unflattering, one-star reviews of a San Francisco lawyer and her law firm posted by a user of the Yelp website who was an angry former client of the law firm… read more →

For additional information concerning special needs trusts and disability planning, visit: NJ Special Needs Trusts and Disability Planning read more →

The veteran in this case had been residing in a medical facility operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for several years. He was incompetent and had no dependents. The veteran had been receiving VA pension benefits based upon financial need. The Director of the VA facility was serving as veteran’s payee. The veteran.. read more →

During his relationship with life partner Marc Coleman, the decedent executed a Last Will and Testament naming Coleman as the executor and primary beneficiary of his estate. The couple later ended their relationship. Thereafter, the decedent entered into a new relationship with Kirston Baylock. The decedent later died unexpectedly. At issue was a hand-written codicil.. read more →

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W.M. was admitted to a nursing home in Cranford, New Jersey. In December 2013, W.M.’s wife, E.M., filed a Medicaid application for W.M. with the local Medicaid agency, the Union County Division of Social Services (“the County”). In January 2014, the County requested additional information and/or documents about W.M.’s income, life insurance, and household expenses… read more →

Nursing homes operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) serve 46,000 veterans annually in 46 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. For years, the VA has monitored care at its nursing facilities through quality indicators and unannounced inspections, and, since 2016, through star rankings based on 11 key indicators, including rates of.. read more →

From June 21, 2018 edition of The Wichita Eagle: A Kansas man was found guilty of a felony after using his mom’s money for personal purchases instead of her nursing home care, officials said. Bruce J. Colle, 61, of Hutchinson, was found guilty Wednesday of one felony county of mistreatment of an elder person, Kansas.. read more →

A.F. was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and osteoarthritis in 2007. She also had difficulty walking. Her husband, T.F., was in failing health, with Parkinson’s disease and COPD, and had other mobility issues.  Beginning in 2012, T.F. could not care for A.F. due to his own health problems. T.F. died of lung cancer in 2015. J.F.,.. read more →

Westfield, NJ – June 19, 2018 — Donald D. Vanarelli, Esq. (https://vanarellilaw.com/) will participate in the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education’s 2018 Elder Law in a Day Seminar held on July 11, 2018 at the New Jersey Law Center in New Brunswick, NJ. Mr. Vanarelli will provide the “Case Law Update: The Year.. read more →

Public Law 113–295, also known as The Stephen Beck, Jr. Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (ABLE Act), was enacted December 19, 2014. The ABLE Act provides individuals with special needs and disabilities to save money for disability related expenses in tax-free savings accounts while preserving their needs-based government benefits. Modeled on 529 college savings plans, ABLE.. read more →

In September 2015, Y.M. was declared an incapacitated person, and the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) was appointed as Y.M.’s guardian. Y.M. was a resident of Hudson View nursing home. The month after its appointment as guardian, OPG filed a Medicaid application on behalf of Y.M. After the application was denied, Hudson View filed.. read more →

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(“The ElderLaw Report: Including Special Needs Planning” is the premier newsletter covering elder law and special needs planning issues. This monthly newsletter keeps legal professionals current with critical developments in elder law and special needs planning, and supplies real-world solutions to the unique legal problems facing senior and disabled clients. The most recent article I prepared for The.. read more →

The decedent was a widow with no family. She had a close relationship with her neighbors. Shortly after a birthday party for the neighbors’ daughter, she handed the neighbors a check for $100, along with a 5-page document the decedent signed using her nickname, “A.J.” At trial, there was no dispute that the decedent possessed.. read more →