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March 2020 Newsletter

Dear Clients and Friends,

I started the newsletter to keep you informed of news or changes in the law that might affect you and your family. There are some legal matters addressed in this newsletter but first I need to explain our plan to deal with the Coronavirus.


  • I have canceled all my seminars for March. Hopefully, we can pick up again in April.

  • Melissa, the greatest paralegal ever, and I will be primarily working from home. We can access our answering machine remotely and I will also check my emails. We will hold appointments over the phone where possible. We will be available to you every day to help answer your questions or solve your problems.

  • Our goal is to help mitigate the spread of the virus and to protect you and us from the virus. It is necessary for me to be especially cautious. My wife recently finished chemo and radiation treatments for lymph node cancer, had her gall bladder removed, and will have lung cancer surgery within a month. Her immune system is extremely compromised and it could be disastrous for her to contract the virus through me.

Medicaid Estate Recovery

It is common knowledge that your home and your car are exempt assets and do not have to be sold for you to qualify for Medicaid. However, what is often misunderstood is the State of Michigan’s legal right to recover the Medicaid benefits paid to someone by filing a claim to be reimbursed from the probate estate of the deceased Medicaid recipient. For example, if you applied for Medicaid, collected $75,000 in benefits, and then passed away, the State would file a $75,000 claim against your probate estate. The State gets all their money back.

How do you prevent this? You can sign a “ladybird” deed to create a beneficiary for your home. With the “ladybird” deed on your home, all the following take place:

  • Your home remains an exempt asset for Medicaid purposes

  • Your home will not go through probate so the State cannot file a claim for recovery

  • Title passes to your beneficiary on your death. All they have to do to complete the title transfer is to record your death certificate at the register of deeds office

  • The ladybird deed does not change your primary residence exemption

  • The ladybird deed can be changed or revoked if your circumstances change

HAP Plan for Veterans

I was contacted last week by my health insurance agent Ron O’Dell. Ron brought news of a new Medicare Advantage program from HAP that costs zero dollars.

This program is for Veterans who are entitled to VA benefits but also are signed up for Medicare Part A and B. This new Medicare Advantage program will:

  • Lower your Medicare Part B cost by $50 per month (That’s an extra $50/month in your social security check.)

  • Some vision coverage

  • Some dental coverage

  • Some hearing coverage

  • 24/7 access to a doctor on smartphone, tablet or computer

  • $300/year coverage for over the counter medicine

  • Zero copay for primary care physician

For more information, see or contact Ron O’Dell at (734) 578-6643. Please do not call me about this. I’ve told you all I know.

Very truly yours,