The Law Office of Donald D. Vanarelli provides elder mediation services, a specialized form of mediation to help elders, the disabled and their families resolve conflict. Mr. Vanarelli is co-founder of the Elder Mediation Center of New Jersey, a collaborative venture with other elder law attorneys and geriatric professionals whose mission is to educate professionals and private.. read more →

Donald D. Vanarelli, Esq., who has focused in planning for the elderly, disabled, and people with special needs for over 30 years, has been board-certified as an Elder Law attorney since 1998.  What is Elder Law? Elder Law is a legal specialty focusing on the special needs and legal problems of seniors, the disabled and.. read more →

For additional information concerning special needs trusts and disability planning, visit: http://vanarellilaw.com/special-needs-disability-planning/   read more →

For additional information concerning New Jersey elder law, visit: NJ Elder Law and Estate Planning Services read more →

Happy Holidays to clients, supporters, friends and readers. Listed below are the ten (10) eleven (11) posts on the Vanarelli Law Office blog with the highest readership in 2017. After each hyperlinked blog post title, the original post date is included. Check out the list to see this year’s highlights. Our sincere thanks for taking.. read more →

Payments for Pre-eligibility Medical Expenses (PEME) are available to individuals eligible for Medicaid who reside in a nursing home (NH) or an assisted living facility (ALF). This blog post attempts to clarify the procedure for processing requests for payments of PEME made by or on behalf of residents of NHs and ALFs. Residents of NHs.. read more →

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers  Who Can Help Me Fill Out the Forms? Any non-accredited individual may assist with completing the forms; however, this individual is allowed to assist ONLY one person. A VA accredited organization, such as your local State Veterans Office, VFW, or American Legion, etc. may help you, as well as an.. read more →

Many public benefit programs are adjusted annually after receiving a cost-of-living, or COLA, increase. Following are the increased benefit amounts of selected public benefit programs Including the 2018 COLA adjustment. Social Security There will be a 2.0% COLA increase for Social Security benefits. Maximum Social Security benefit for a single individual retiring at full retirement.. read more →

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has released its Spousal Impoverishment Standards for 2018. The official spousal impoverishment allowances for 2018 are as follows: Community Spouse Resource Allowance The “community spouse resource allowance” is a protection provided under Medicaid law for the healthy spouse of an applicant for benefits (called the “community spouse”) to.. read more →

For additional information concerning special needs trusts and disability planning, visit: http://vanarellilaw.com/special-needs-disability-planning/ read more →

General Qualifications for VA Non-Service Connected Pension Benefits Plus Aid and Attendance Supplement  Veteran, Widowed Spouse and Dependent or Disabled Child (Any May be a Claimant) Veterans Must Typically Have Served Ninety Days Active Duty with One Day During Wartime (Those Who Enlisted After September 7, 1980 Have Additional Time Requirements) Veteran Cannot Have Had.. read more →

The amount that people with disabilities can deposit in an ABLE account each year without jeopardizing eligibility for needs-based governmental benefits will rise from the current $14,000 to $15,000 starting in 2018. Under the law, total annual deposits to ABLE accounts are limited to the federal gift tax exclusion limit set by the IRS. The.. 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 →

Donald D. Vanarelli, Esq. (http://VanarelliLaw.com/) will present at the 2017 Elder Law College given by the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education on December 14, 2017 at the Crowne Plaza, located at 690 Route 46 East, Fairfield, New Jersey. Mr. Vanarelli will provide an overview of the new laws governing guardianships in New Jersey.. read more →

The 19th Annual Elder and Disability Law Symposium was held on November 9, 2017 at the New Jersey Law Center in New Brunswick, NJ. As in past years, I presented the case law update at the opening plenary session. This year I summarized 40 elder and disability law cases decided from September 2016 through August.. read more →

The House Republicans tax proposal introduced today ends the Medical Expense Deduction. This change will cause major harm to individuals and families trying to pay for the catastrophic costs of long-term services and supports (LTSS). About half (52%) of Americans turning 65 today will develop a condition that requires LTSS. Individuals needing LTSS are those.. read more →

The Genworth Cost of Care Survey has been the foundation for long term care planning since 2004. Knowing the costs of different types of care – whether the care is provided at home or in a facility – can help you plan for these expenses. According to Genworth, the 2017 survey is one of the.. read more →

On October 14, 2017, the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, Middlesex County Bar Foundation and NJSBA Military Law and Veterans’ Affairs Section presented the 2017 Military Law Symposium at Cook College Student Center, Rutgers University. The Military Law Symposium is presented annually. This year, over 200 current members of the armed forces, veterans.. 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 →

The Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014 (the ABLE Act) enables individuals with disabilities to save money in a tax-exempt account (ABLE account) which can use for meeting disability-related needs with no impact on eligibility for public benefits based upon financial need. The law states that ABLE accounts should “supplement, but not supplant”.. read more →

As many hospital patients have discovered, there are huge financial implications when a hospital designates one of its patients as an outpatient on “observation status.” In order to receive Medicare coverage for a subsequent nursing home stay, Medicare requires that the patient first have a three-day inpatient stay. The “observation status” designation is an outpatient.. read more →

In a case of first impression in New Jersey, Hon. Stephan C. Hansbury, Presiding Judge of the Chancery Court in Morris County permitted service of process through postings on Facebook. The court held that when service of process cannot be served on a defendant by traditional means, the rules of civil procedure permit an alternate.. read more →

In a major new ethics opinion, the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility indicated that lawyers must take reasonable efforts to ensure that communications with clients are secure and not subject to inadvertent or unauthorized security breaches. Notably, and for the first time, the opinion says that, in some circumstances, lawyers would.. read more →

Under regulations governing needs-based pension benefits provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs, adult children providing care to an applicant veteran or his or her spouse can be paid for work performed even if the children are NOT licensed care professionals as long as the applicant has been rated either Housebound or A&A. The regulation.. read more →

New Jersey’s Medicaid rules are complicated, and always changing. One such change in the rules occurring on a regular basis is the State Medicaid agency’s amendment to the Medicaid program’s “penalty divisor.”  On May 12, 2017, a Medicaid Communication, or notice from the agency, was released by New Jersey’s Division of Medical Assistance and Health.. read more →