On March 13, 2013, the highest court of our state granted my Petition for Certification, in which I asked the Supreme Court to consider the case of a retired fireman and his continuing battle to conduct estate planning for the benefit of his severely disabled son. This is the second time the Supreme Court has.. read more →

A federal district court judge in New Jersey granted a Medicaid applicant’s motion for a preliminary injunction, thereby enjoining the State from counting an annuity owned by her husband as an available resource in determining her eligibility for Medicaid. Flamini v. Velez, Civil No. 1:12-cv-07304 (D.N.J. July 19, 2013) Elizabeth Flamini entered a skilled nursing.. read more →

Recently, the New Jersey Supreme Court granted a Petition for Certification I filed asking the Court to review a decision of the appellate division denying a request by my client, a retired fireman, to designate as beneficiary of his public pension death benefits a special needs trust he established in his Last Will and Testament. This.. read more →

Earlier this year the New York State Legislature, prompted by the Governor’s Medicaid Redesign Team, amended Section 369 of the Social Services Law to increase New York’s right to recover money from the estate of a deceased Medicaid recipient. The amendment expands the definition of the term “estate” in the Medicaid Law to include non-probate.. read more →

Thomas Saccone is a retired Newark, NJ firefighter. He and his wife’s only son, Anthony, suffers from severe mental disabilities. Tom is a long-standing estate planning client of my law firm. Tom has shown himself to be a devoted husband and father who is relentless in his efforts to plan his estate in order to.. read more →

The Treasury Department and the four major benefit agencies, the Social Security Administration, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Railroad Retirement Board, are jointly releasing new rules which prevent banks from seizing Social Security and other federal benefits from customers facing debt collectors. The new rules would.. read more →

In Rodbart v. County of Union, 2009 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 3084 (December 21, 2009), Union County was sued by three retirees who expected the County to pay their Medicare Part B premiums for life if they accepted early retirement. Two of the retirees were former Union County assistant prosecutors and the other served as.. read more →

In May of this year, the Internal Revenue Service provided guidance on when a taxpayer may avoid the 10% penalty on IRA distributions before age 59 by claiming to be disabled. In Chief Counsel Advice 200922041, the IRS explained the meaning of “disabled” as it relates to Internal Revenue Code 72(m)(7), the disability exception to.. read more →

The battle for a secure retirement is about to get even tougher. Several new surveys of company executives show that they plan to reduce or suspend their company’s retirement-plan contributions this year.  Dozens of employers in the past year have already slashed such costs.  The trend means one important thing for workers: smaller nest eggs,.. read more →

A new Supreme Court decision illustrates the importance of making sure your beneficiary designations are up-to-date.  The Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that a plan administrator properly distributed benefits under an ERISA pension plan to a deceased participant’s ex-spouse, as she was the only designated beneficiary, even though she had waived her interest in plan.. read more →

Congress approved legislation that would allow retirees to defer withdrawals from their 401(k) plans and individual retirement accounts in 2009 without triggering a penalty. President Bush is expected to sign the bill. Ordinarily, seniors age 70½ and older are required to withdraw a minimum amount from their tax-deferred retirement savings plans every year and pay.. read more →