Dear Family, Friends & Colleagues,


The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) has designated May as "National Elder Law Month."  Elder Law attorneys are dedicated to improving the lives of seniors, people with disabilities and others.  "Elder law attorneys are competent, caring and compassionate professionals," said Craig Reaves, former president of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA). "They focus on the overall picture of what is best for clients and their families."


To celebrate National Elder Law Month, we are offering initial consultations at a reduced rate of $250 for clients who schedule during the month of May and mention National Elder Law Month.  We have included a preview of what to expect at your initial consultation.


We always appreciate referrals from our satisfied clients, friends, business partners, and family members.  We welcome the opportunity to serve the people you care about.  Click on the gray Forward Email button at the bottom of the page to send this newsletter to someone who will benefit from our insights.



Severns and Stinson, P.C.


Elder Law News from Severns & Stinson

    May 2011


Severns & Stinson. P.C.           Scott R. Severns 
10293 N. Meridian Street            Jeffery D. Stinson 
Suite 150                                   Lindsay R. Knowles 
Indianapolis, Indiana  46290         Clifton A. Dennis   
(317) 817-0300                           Anna M. Howard 
(317) 817-0302 Fax
In This Issue
Your First Appointment with Severns & Stinson
The VA Aid and Attendance Program Provides Assistance with Long Term Care Costs
House Budget Cutters Prescribe Radical Surgery for Medicare and Medicaid
Responsibility for a Deceased Relative's Debts
Caregiver Contracts: A Growing Planning Trend for Families
New Rule Requires Homebound Medicare Patients to See Doctors
States May now Extend Medicaid's Spousal Protections to Same-Sex Partners
Quick Links

Attorney Spotlight

Super Lawyer Badge

In our last edition, we mentioned that Scott R. Severns had been selected for inclusion in Indiana Super Lawyers 2009 magazine.  While this was true, we meant to announce that Scott has also been selected for inclusion Indiana Super Lawyers 2011 magazine. In fact, this is Scott's 7th consecutive year to be named as a Super Lawyer. Congratulations to Scott and we apologize for the error.

Scott Severns

In early April, Jeffery D. Stinson attended the "Aid and Attendance 'Flight School'" in Atlanta, a two-day seminar on the Veteran's Administration Aid and Attendance benefit. 

Jeff received in-depth training on such issues as the medical requirements for aid and attendance benefits, financial requirements, planning techniques, and presenting a claim for benefits.  We are thrilled Jeff was able to add to his knowledge and experience in this area. 


If you answer yes to any of these questions, Severns & Stinson can help.

-Has a family member been diagnosed with a mentally or physically debilitating disorder such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, ALS, stroke or a decline in functional capacity?

-Is a family member isolated due to the recent death of a spouse, or have family that either lives too far away or is too busy to provide adequate care?

-Is a family member soon to be discharged into a care facility or currently receiving in-home care?

-Does a family member have a variety of healthcare providers and need coordination and advocacy for quality care?

-Does a family member seem unusually concerned about costs of medication and services, indicating he or she may be having financial troubles?

-Does a family member have assets that fall between $50,000 and $400,000 - enough to finance a short stay in a care facility but not enough for an extended stay?

-Does a family member have a spouse whose financial needs must be considered in light of a family member's medical condition?
Did you receive this from a friend? 
Your First Appointment with Severns & Stinson

We are often asked about how individuals become Severns & Stinson clients.  We have prepared this brief article to explain the initial consultation process so you may better understand what occurs during our initial meeting, what information is necessary for us to properly address your concerns, and our charges. 

Read on 

The VA Aid and Attendance Program Provides Assistance with Long Term Care Costs by Lindsay Knowles

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers an under-utilized benefit to wartime veterans and their surviving spouses that can provide much needed assistance with costs of long term care. This benefit, called the Aid and Attendance (A&A) pension, provides monetary assistance to war-time veterans (or their surviving spouses) in need of aid or assistance with activities of daily living. This aid or assistance can be provided at home, in an assisted living facility, or a nursing home and can be provided by friends, family, or health care professionals.  Read on 

House Budget Cutters Prescribe Radical Surgery for Medicare and Medicaid

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) has proposed a budget that would dramatically reshape both the Medicare and Medicaid programs and shift more costs to seniors and people with disabilities. Read on 

Responsibility for a Deceased Relative's Debts

Family members generally should not have to pay for a decedent's debts, but it is important to know your rights because collection agencies may target the decedent's relatives.

Read On 

Caregiver Contracts: A Growing Planning Trend for Families   

 A growing number of people are entering into caregiver contracts (also called personal service or personal care agreements) with their family members. Having such a contract has many benefits, including being a key part of Medicaid planning. Read on 

New Rule Requires Homebound Medicare Patients to See Doctors

The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services has issued a new Medicare requirement that doctors must meet face-to-face with their patients who are receiving home health care in order for the patient's home health visits to be reimbursed.

Read on 

States May now Extend Medicaid's Spousal Protections to Same-Sex Partners

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has announced it will now permit states to extend Medicaid long-term care protections long available to spouses of nursing home residents to same-sex domestic partners as well.

Read on 

About Our Law Firm
Severns & Stinson, P.C. is a law firm focused on the needs of families confronting issues with health care. We have a special emphasis on long term care issues -- an emphasis that has come to be known as "elder law." Our firm consists of five attorneys and two paraprofessionals.
Our services include the following:
  • Asset Protection & Long Term Care Planning
  • Medicaid Planning, Applications and Appeals
  • Medicare Consultation and Advocacy
  • Estate Planning 
  • "Making It Last"™ - Supplemental Needs Trusts and Asset Protection for Persons with Disabilities
  • Response Team Building - Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Health Care Declarations and Other Advance Directives
  • Guardianships and Probate Administration
  • Patients Rights and Care Advocacy.
Severns & Stinson. P.C.
10293 N. Meridian Street, Suite 150
Indianapolis, Indiana 46290