“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under G-d, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Thank you to all who have served, and are serving! You gave, and continue to give, every day to ensure our freedom—and to you, we are forever grateful!

On June 6, 2012, Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon introduced legislation that will restrict eligibility for veteran’s benefits used to assist in funding for home health care, assisted living and nursing home expenses. The proposed bill would require that the Secretary of Veterans Affairs look back 36-months for any uncompensated transfers that a veteran, their spouse or child may have made. Today, there is no look-back period. A veteran, their spouse or child with excess assets can qualify for veteran’s benefits by making transfers to a properly drafted irrevocable gift trust.

If the proposed legislation were to pass, the bill would take effect one year after enactment, and apply to pensions applied for or redeterminations after that date. The bill will disqualify a veteran, their spouse or child who has made transfers to a properly drafted irrevocable gift trust, within the 36-month look-back period, from receiving benefits for a period of time depending on the amount that was transferred.

The percentage is astounding. Less than half of all Florida residents, including active duty and veteran members, have an estate plan in place. Yet, the death rate in Florida has held steady at 100 percent. As an active duty or veteran member, you have and continue to do so much for this country. Please do not fall prey to this look-back period. Who knows if or when the proposed veteran’s benefits “36-month Look-Back-Period” legislation will pass. You have taken the honorable oaths of enlistment and office. Allow a competent and qualified estate planning attorney the opportunity to give you their oath to protect what you so rightfully deserve.

For more information on successful Florida estate planning, please contact the South Florida law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. at (954) 944-2855 to schedule your free consultation. While our South Florida estate planning attorneys have the expertise in tax planning, as well as the designations of LL.M. and CPA that provide for the highest level of professional service, our firm aims to shed the tax attorney paradigm that estate planners are often pigeon-holed with and focus instead on the dynamic relationships between our clients and their loved ones.
Estate planning is about those friends and family left behind, which is why we first ask our clients what their wealth transfer and asset protection goals are and then explain how we can accomplish those goals together.

It’s a Wild world. Are you protected?SM