The Listen to Lawrence Letter: Should we do an Irrevocable Trust now?

November 10, 2023
November 7, 2023 • Volume 4 Issue 188
Timing is everything…read on:


Presently, I am age 75 and my husband is age 87. We created our “revocable” trust with you in December 2017. Second marriage, I don’t have children, my husband has two married children plus one grandchild. My husband has long-term care insurance, but I do not. Our health at present is good.

Would it be advisable to consider creating an “irrevocable” trust NOW so we can start the Medicaid look-back period? OR wait until one of us passes?


Also, is it necessary to update our “Power of Attorney” (POA) forms?


Thank you for your advice.


Since your husband is covered by insurance, the real question is WHEN and IF you should start your Medicaid planning. Do you really want to do Medicaid planning? You do not have children so for whom are you trying to save your assets? If there is someone that you want to protect your assets for, such as your husband’s children, then, generally speaking, NOW IS THE TIME. Unless you have some crystal ball, we don’t know if waiting to start a look back later (and we do not know what the laws will be later) is wise or feasible. The bottom line is that many factors go into whether or not you should do Medicaid planning or when…so my best advice is to come in for a consult and let’s discuss this thoroughly.

As for the power of attorney update, all new powers of attorney forms are grandfathered in all older forms, so the age of the form does not necessitate

an update. Nor do changes of address of any of the players in the document. However, if your form was prepared by another attorney you should have me review it to make sure that it has all the language and powers I like to see in these documents (attorneys who do not focus on elder law and estate planning often create powers of attorney without the necessary elder care and tax focus).

The most common reason that people do change their powers of attorney is that they wish to change WHO they originally appointed.

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