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4 real ways to help parent manage virtual and digital assets

Elderly parents may not have as robust of an online presence as their children and grandchildren. However, that does not mean their digital and virtual lives are non-existent. Many people have email, social media, bank accounts and other digital assets, and managing these assets when they pass away can be crucial.

Unfortunately, people do not always understand the significance of their online property, especially when they are not avid tech users. If this sounds like your parent, there are some helpful things you can do to help them address digital needs and protect their assets.

Addressing a family secret in an estate plan

Every family has their secrets. Years ago, the keepers of these secrets may have passed away without anyone ever learning about the private information. Today, however, it is easier than ever for families to uncover hidden stories thanks to technology like direct-to-consumer genetic testing.

Because of this, any person with a family secret regarding parentage or the family tree may want to think carefully about how and if they want to address it in an estate plan.

Changes could be coming to Medicaid eligibility process

Millions of Americans depend on Medicaid to help with their medical expenses and care needs. However, the application process is complicated and eligibility requirements are strict. Qualifying for and keeping these benefits can also be challenging.

These could become even more challenging as the Trump administration considers changes to the program that could affect Medicaid enrollment in Colorado and across the U.S.

Tips for discussing a parent's care needs as a family

As parents get older, their needs change. Such changes don't just affect them, though; they also affect family members.

Because of this, your parent's needs can be a topic for family discussion. As this article suggests, holding a family meeting could be a good way to share information and collaborate on a plan. To make this discussion easier, kinder and more productive, consider the following tips.

Will my child's student loans affect my estate plan?

There may be very few decisions that parents make without considering the impact those decisions might have on their kids. This can certainly be true when it comes to financial and estate planning. 

For instance, many parents today have taken out student loans or co-signed on student loans for their children. While this can be helpful, parents must consider what happens to those loans if they or their child pass away before paying them off. 

Study: 'Dramatic' increase in exploitation of older adults

Elderly men and women are among the most vulnerable people when it comes to abuse and exploitation. Often, these parties are unfamiliar with technology, isolated and experiencing mental declines that affect their decision-making skills. As such, they can be targets for theft and financial abuse.

Sadly, this trend does not seem to be easing up. In fact, according to statistics from the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the number of suspicious activity reports (SARs) filed in the last six years has increased dramatically.

Preparing a child for receiving (or not receiving) an inheritance

In many families, there is an expectation that a parent's money and property will go to his or her children after death. However, that is certainly not always the case.

Leaving an inheritance to your child is an intensely personal decision, and one that you should have full control over. However, to protect your wishes and minimize any contention or unwelcome surprises, you should discuss the topic of an inheritance with your children.

What to know if your spouse must go into a care facility

Learning that your spouse must go into a nursing home or other care facility is heartbreaking for the well spouse. Not only is it difficult to come to terms with living apart, but there can be concerns about how to pay for the care a person needs.

People in this upsetting situation may assume that they must spend all their money and sell assets in order to pay for care until they qualify for Medicaid. However, this is not necessarily true. 

Reasons you may be denied Medicaid coverage and what you can do

Health coverage through Medicaid is crucial for millions of Americans. Without it, people can lose or be denied access to dental services, prescription medication, preventative health care and emergency care.

Therefore, it is important to understand what factors may lead the state to deny an application for Medicaid and how you can improve your chances for eligibility.

Can I contest guardianship in Colorado?

Guardianships can become necessary when an adult or child needs someone to protect them physically, mentally and financially. A child may need a guardian if his or her parents pass away or cannot provide care. An elderly person may need a guardian if he or she cannot make critical decisions or communicate wishes.

Considering the difficult circumstances under which the courts may appoint a guardian, it may not be surprising that some cases become contentious over the need for a guardian or the appointment of a specific guardian. In these situations, someone may contest guardianship.

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