Although it is common practice to add the name of a family member to a bank account as a convenience, the existence of a “convenience” account can have negative results when that family member applies for Medicaid benefits. In F.J. v. Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services, the applicant’s daughter testified that she opened.. read more →

A New Jersey appeals court upheld the denial of Medicaid benefits to an applicant who failed to provide necessary verifications, rejecting the claim that the Medicaid agency’s failure to assist with the application prejudiced the applicant. P.B. v. Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services (N.J. Super. Ct., App. Div., No. A-5405-15T2, Dec. 8, 2017). P.B.’s daughter.. read more →

Before Mr. Trotman was admitted to a nursing home, he resided in a home that he owned. He had difficulty maintaining the home and paying the bills, so his daughter began paying his bills in 2007. In December 2011, Mr. Trotman asked his daughter to assume full responsibility for the property, which then was also.. read more →

Louis Acerra, the decedent, died at the age of 30 from injuries he suffered in a house fire. He survived more than two years after the fire before finally succumbing to those injuries. During those two years, he was cared for by Richard Litwin. Litwin had been in a relationship with the decedent’s mother when.. read more →

Ohio’s highest court suspended an attorney who advised his client to transfer assets in order to qualify for Medicaid and then lied to the state Medicaid agency about whether the client transferred assets. Stark County Bar Association v. Buttacavoli (Ohio, No. 2017-Ohio-8857, Dec. 7, 2017). Attorney Glen Buttacavoli’s law practice consisted of providing financial-planning advice.. read more →

This appeal concerned the trial court’s ruling that a 2013 deed was valid. The appellants, who were appointed co-executors of the decedent’s will, claimed that the deed was the product of undue influence. The decedent had owned a condominium and, in 2012, she executed a deed conveying that interest to herself and her niece, as.. read more →

Plaintiff, a son of the decedent, filed a complaint in the Superior Court, Chancery Division, challenging the validity of the decedent’s will. A hearing in the matter was scheduled for June 2015, but plaintiff was unable to obtain a visa to come to the United States for the hearing. The hearing was postponed four times… read more →

After being sued by Medicaid applicant in federal court, the Director of New Jersey Medicaid, who had previously denied benefits because the applicant transferred assets to a trust more than 5 years before, instead stated the application was denied because, under the terms of the trust, the trustee was permitted to pay the applicant’s rent… read more →

E.H. submitted a Medicaid application to the Hudson County Division of Welfare (HCDW) and designated Future Care Consultants (FCC) as her designated authorized representative (DAR). Shortly thereafter, the HCDW denied the application because E.H. failed to provide her husband’s bank records for the five-year look-back period. FCC appealed the denial, submitting a request for a.. read more →

Contrary to the recent decision in the G.V. v. Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services case which held that assets transferred to an Income Only Trust more than 5 years before a Medicaid application was filed were still available, rendering  the applicant ineligible for benefits, the M.K. v. Morris County Board of Social Services.. read more →

A Superior Court judge in Ocean County dismissed a lawsuit filed by a nursing home for unpaid bills against a power of attorney appointed by a former resident, and ordered the nursing home to pay legal fees incurred by the power of attorney, ruling that the law prohibited the nursing home from requiring the power.. read more →

The plaintiffs in this case were sisters Ashley Nelson-Guedez and Lyndsay Nelson-Nugent, whose father died in 2007. The plaintiffs’ father, Paul Nelson, predeceased their grandfather. Upon their grandfather’s death, his estate was probated in New Jersey, and Paul’s current wife (Jacqueline Limoli) received Paul’s share of Paul’s father’s estate. Plaintiffs alleged that Jacqueline agreed to.. read more →

After being denied Medicaid because of a $70,000 joint bank account she maintained with her son, the Medicaid applicant, S.M., appealed the case to An administrative hearing. S.M. argued that Medicaid had failed to consider that her son was the sole source of $60,000 of those bank funds. After the ALJ affirmed Medicaid’s denial, and.. read more →

Following the death of James E. Mellodge, his youngest child, Joyce Sealtiel, was appointed as his executrix. In the first probate action, the decedent’s oldest daughter, Joan Bozan, sued Joyce, claiming that Joyce unduly influenced their father to name Joyce as the beneficiary of certain POD accounts. A two-day trial was held and the complaint.. read more →

The decedent, Dr. Evan Merritt London, was single with no children. He executed a number of wills and trusts over the years, with the trusts as the primary vehicle for disposing of his estate. He would make periodic trust revisions in which his beneficiaries (including his niece and nephew, his best friend, and various charities).. read more →

2017 Elder and Disability Law Symposium ‘Elder and Disability Law Update’ to be presented by leading NJ Elder Law and Estate Planning Attorney, Donald D. Vanarelli, Esq. Westfield, NJ – October 15, 2015 — Donald D. Vanarelli, Esq. (http://VanarelliLaw.com/) will participate in the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education’s 20th Annual Elder and Disability.. read more →

A court in Australia accepted an unsent, draft text message on a mobile phone as an official Last Will and Testament. Nichol v. Nichol The decedent, Mark Nichol, a 55 year old man, committed suicide in 2016. The decedent’s mobile phone was found on a work bench in the shed where the deceased’s body was found.. read more →

Dolores Pierce died in December 2014. She appointed her son Michael as executor of her estate, and letters testamentary issued on May 20, 2015. The decedent’s estate included 3 parcels of real property: a farm, a house (the “Pine Tree” property), and a third property where Michael lived and worked (the “Ramshorn” property). The decedent’s.. read more →

In this will contest, plaintiffs were named as residuary beneficiaries in the Last Will and Testament which the decedent, Charles W. Winter, Jr., executed in 1999. Plaintiffs were all cousins of the decedent. The three defendants also shared close personal and/or family relationships with the decedent. In a new Last Will and Testament executed on.. read more →

Maria Delores Heller was in her seventies and suffering from late-stage ALS. She required round-the-clock medical care and was bedridden. Her late husband’s former legal associate, a New York attorney, filed an Order to Show Cause in New Jersey, seeking to be appointed as Ms. Heller’s guardian. The guardianship application was supported by two doctors’.. read more →

In 2005, Stuart and Phyllis Rauch purchased a nursing home facility through an LLC they formed. Their son Eric convinced them to hire his wife, Shan Chin, as a bookkeeper. The business suffered financial losses; by 2008, its net losses exceeded $585,000. In 2009, after losing his job at a law firm, Eric approached his.. read more →

Plaintiff Christopher Hermanns had been an adjunct college professor. He claimed that he quit his job at his father’s request to work in his father’s linen rental business (the “Company”). His father was the sole shareholder of the business, although plaintiff served as the president for six years. According to plaintiff, during his years of.. read more →

Nursing home resident Joseph Gamma died after falling off his bed at the facility. His estate sued the nursing home. One of the claims the estate asserted was that the nursing home had violated the New Jersey Nursing Home Responsibilities and Residents’ Right Act (“the Nursing Home Act”). At the conclusion of the trial, the.. read more →

Applying New Jersey’s filial support law, an appeals court in Pennsylvania affirmed a decision denying a Pennsylvania residential facility’s effort to hold the elderly New Jersey parents of an adult resident liable for the unpaid balance of his specialized services. Melmark v. Schutt (Pa. Super., No. 2253 EDA 2016, July 19, 2017). New Jersey resident Alexander (Alex).. read more →

In the Matter of the Estate of Anna Fabics involved multiple lawsuits, motions, and other pleadings filed by the decedent’s son Joseph against Joseph’s brother Laszlo. Their mother’s will left her residuary estate to her two sons equally, and appointed Laszlo as executor. The will directed the executor to sell all property of the estate.. read more →