At Dunn & Browne, a practice emphasis is upon the legal and estate planning needs of the elderly and families with autistic or develop-mentally disabled “special needs” children. 

At Dunn & Browne, we know the worry and heartache that can accompany the loss of control over one’s life and assets.  We know the fear and anxiety of parents who lack the means to provide for the lifelong care required by a beloved but disabled child. 
Dunn & Browne can guide you through the complexities of State and Federal Estate taxation, while working with you in the preparation of the plans and documents necessary to secure your estate objectives.  These include:

  • Wills
  • Living Trusts
  • Powers of Attorney and Living Wills
  • Disclaimer and Marital Deduction Trusts
  • Family and Limited Partnerships

In this increasingly complex world, senior citizens and families with disabled children are often daunted by the challenges they face in obtaining proper medical and nursing home care for themselves and their loved ones.

At our firm we can assist you in avoiding loss of eligibility for Medicaid resulting from prohibited transfers of property.  We help you control the transfer of your assets, with dignity, as you strug-gle to maintain your rights and express your needs and wishes.  We can help you provide properly for:

  • Disposition of the family home
  • Assuring your eligibility for Medicaid or other public benefit programs
  • A family owned business built over a lifetime
  • Life insurance policies and annuities
  • Highly appreciated assets
  • Retirement Accounts such as 401K plans and IRA’s

A principle concern on the minds of many elderly people today is the availability of long term nursing home care and the impact of its cost on one’s estate.  At Dunn & Browne we can assist you with the planning necessary to assure against the loss of “means-tested” public benefit programs for yourself and a spouse.  We can advise you concerning transactions which will “pass muster” and protect against creditors, as well as those transfers which will disqualify you from Medicaid care.

If you are one of the increasing number of families who have an autistic or disabled child, you are probably already aware of some of the public benefit programs available to help provide the care your child will require in the future. These programs include Medicaid, SSI and other state and local programs, as well as education and other county programs.  Some of these are “means- tested” and will be unavailable to the child who inherits, or who acquires monies from gifts or other sources.  In order to be assured that those benefits will be available for your child, you will need to put a plan in place, with a Special Needs Trust.

At Dunn & Browne, we can assist you with the establishment of an estate plan and a Special Needs Trust which will comply with the regulatory framework of the agencies involved in your child’s long term care.  We can help you with:

  • The designation of a responsible trustee with carefully crafted trust documents
  • Advice to family members who may be expected to bequeath property to your child
  • Providing for the proper distribution of trust principle without Medicaid liens
  • Providing for your wishes for your child’s care
  • Ways to fund the Special Needs Trust

A NOTE ON FEES:  At Dunn & Browne we discuss the fees for the legal services you require beforehand, and all fee agreements are in writing.

caring service is a tradition

At Dunn & Browne, we will help you with the decisions necessary to minimize excessive

state and federal estate and inheritance taxes while still passing your estate as you

intend.  Where appropriate, we will use trusts to avoid probate.  We will guide you to the

proper handling of powers of attorney and health care directives.

For families with disabled loved ones, we can assist you with the legal services necessary for guardianship and conservatorship actions.  These complex proceedings require the involvement of doctors and court appointed counsel to represent the interests of the incompetent.  Accountings may be required.

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Dunn & Browne

At Dunn & Browne, caring service is a tradition we maintain with pride in an era in which sellers of forms and financial service packages seek to substitute their products for competent legal advice.

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