Key Elder Law Numbers for 2023: Annual Roundup

For quick reference, please find below the figures for 2023 that are frequently used in elder law practice that are of interest to our clients. Medicaid Spousal Impoverishment Figures for 2023 Medicaid Home Equity Limits Access CMS’s complete chart of the 2023 SSI and Spousal Impoverishment Standards. Income Cap The income cap (in applicable states) […]

Keeping Medicare Solvent Could Mean Higher Taxes for the Wealthy

       With the 2024 presidential election in the not-too-distant future, coverage of heated debates over the nation’s government budget, including how to secure the future of public benefits programs like Social Security and Medicare, has dominated the daily headlines. In one recent development, President Joe Biden, who has pledged to bolster such federal programs, has […]

5 Reasons for Seniors to Celebrate in 2023

         It has been a tumultuous few years. Amid a continuing pandemic, tense midterm elections, and a war in Ukraine, we have grappled with more than our fair share of grim news. However, with the new year upon us, there are some silver linings — in particular for seniors. Here are five reasons for seniors […]

Jan. 1-March 31: Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period

          If you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan but would like to make a change, you can likely take advantage of the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period.  This Open Enrollment Period occurs each year between January 1 and March 31. What Is Medicare vs. Medicare Advantage? Medicare is a federal health insurance program designed […]

Comparing Traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage

Recent research by the Kaiser Family Foundation examined the differences between traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage. While people in either program were similarly satisfied with their care and overall care coordination, some distinctions became apparent. Traditional Medicare’s Strengths Traditional Medicare is a federal health insurance program for adults 65 and older and individuals with disabilities. […]

Social Security and Medicare Financial Outlooks Improve Slightly Due to Rebounding Economy

          An economy that is recovering from the pandemic faster than expected means that the Social Security and Medicare trustees are predicting that both programs’ trust funds will remain solvent longer than they forecast last year. While this is a short-term improvement, major difficulties loom unless Congress acts.   Social Security retirement benefits and Medicare […]

Medicare Enrollment Period Extended for Those Who’ve Been Getting a Busy Signal

          Medicare is part of the Social Security Administration (SSA), so if you need to enroll in Medicare, that’s whom you contact. But in recent months, phone lines at the SSA were experiencing major technical issues, preventing some individuals from being able to reach the SSA via telephone in a timely manner. These issues affected the […]

Medicare Advantage Plans Often Wrongly Deny Necessary Care, Study Finds

In an alarming number of instances, private Medicare Advantage plans are denying coverage for medical services that would be covered under original Medicare, according to a federal investigation. These denials are likely preventing or delaying medically necessary care for tens of thousands of Medicare Advantage beneficiaries each year. The investigation by the Department of Health and […]

Rather Than End Controversial Medicare Initiative, Biden Gives It a Makeover

In the face of mounting criticism that its Direct Contracting initiative will undermine traditional Medicare, the Biden administration announced that rather than terminate the model, it is changing its name and adding protections against abuse. The revamped program is a mouthful: the Accountable Care Organization Realizing Equity, Access, and Community Care (ACO REACH) Model. Direct Contracting’s critics, who […]

Medicare’s Controversial Direct Contracting Program Hits Biden Administration’s Radar

The Biden administration is hearing mounting calls to end a program that advocates warn will radically transform Medicare.  At the same time, the administration is getting counter-pressure from the healthcare industry that sees a sudden threat to the potentially lucrative plan.  A decision may be coming soon. As recently as early December 2021 the program, known as Direct Contracting, […]