SSDI, SSI, Estate Planning, Elder Law & Medi-Cal Planning in California

Medicaid Planning & Elder Law Attorney in Simi Valley, CA

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Should You Hire an Elder Law Attorney to Assist with a Medi-Cal Application in Simi Valley?

Elder law attorneys like James Dolenga specialize in helping seniors with long-term care planning, estate planning, and government benefits. He has experience in Medicaid planning, understands each California’s rules and regulations, and helps families by identifying strategies to legally obtain and maintain eligibility for public benefits.

Medi-Cal is a complicated benefit for residents of California. It’s important to seek the advice of a seasoned professional who understands the rules, processes, and provisions under these laws.

Without professional guidance, families risk losing the assets and inheritance they worked so hard to create.

Who is Eligible for Medi-Cal in Simi Valley?

Many people are wrongfully told (or assume) that they must be financially destitute to qualify for Medi-Cal / Medicaid for long-term care. 

Clearly, individuals can’t just give away, transfer, or quitclaim away property as this will trigger severe penalties. 

The Medi-Cal / Medicaid law has many exceptions and loopholes which can allow families to preserve most of their accumulated assets and wealth.

For institutional / nursing home / skilled nursing care, there is no income limit.

Medi-Cal will however require that excess income be applied to care as a Share of Cost. 

Depending on the level of care needed, the applicant may still end up using their entire monthly income and still need to spend down from other assets.

Asset limits (real estate other than a primary residence, bank accounts, investment accounts, certain retirement accounts, etc.) are listed as $2,000 for a single applicant and $3,000 for married applicants when both are applying.

For married applicants when only one spouse is applying, the non-applicant spouse is allowed to retain up to $137,400 (called the Community Spouse Resource Allowance) plus the $2,000 allowance for the institutional/applicant spouse.

For assistance under the “waivers” programs, which covers caregivers, in-home supportive services, and assisted living, the income limits are $1,564/mos for the applicant and $2,106 for a couple when both are applying.  The asset limits remain the same.

Applicants are told that they must “spend down” their assets until they get below these asset limits. 

Again, the Medi-Cal / Medicaid rules have very explicit carve-outs and exceptions that can allow an applicant or their family to protect hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars with proper planning.

That’s where we come in. 

We will work with you to legally protect those assets and to shepherd the Medi-Cal / Medicaid application through the government bureaucracy from application to approval.

Once qualified, we can work with you to further protect those assets from Medi-Cal / Medicaid recovery after death.

James Dolenga will create a well-written, customized estate plan, so you can ensure that your wishes are carried out and your goals are achieved while protecting your family and legacy. Get help today.

Research shows that having a professional representative can boost your chances of getting Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Make sure you’re represented.

Medicaid Planning & Elder Law Services Near Simi Valley

Our law firm provides comprehensive, personalized, and tailored legal services to meet all of our client’s estate planning needs. Our firm utilizes a variety of tools to help families preserve their assets for generations to come. Specifically, we work with our clients to minimize estate taxes and ultimately avoid the lengthy and expensive probate process by utilizing Wills (simple & complex), Powers of Attorney, Living Trusts, Living Wills, Family Limited Partnerships, Irrevocable Trusts, and Charitable Gifting Strategies.

When it comes to Medicaid & Medi-Cal Services & Elder Law, our goal is to protect our clients’ nest eggs. We ensure that our clients qualify for Medicaid services and other government medical benefits so that their estates are protected from expensive nursing home and hospital bills. If you become disabled and unable to work, we will help you determine if you qualify for SSD coverage. As a Social Security disability lawyer, James Dolenga will also inform you about the monthly disability benefits and health coverage for a deceased, disabled or retired worker’s disabled dependents.

About California

California, a western U.S. state, stretches from the Mexican border along the Pacific for nearly 900 miles. Its terrain includes cliff-lined beaches, redwood forest, the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Central Valley farmland and the Mojave Desert. The city of Los Angeles is the seat of the Hollywood entertainment industry. Hilly San Francisco is known for the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island and cable cars.

Top Elder Law and Medicaid Planning Attorney in Simi Valley, CA. James Dolenga provides Medicaid Planning, Elder Law, Estate Planning, SSDI & SSI services. Call today.

Senior Services in Simi Valley

SENIOR CENTER

City Manager’s Office
Simi Valley Senior Center – (805) 583-6363

West entrance of the Simi Valley Senior CenterWhat began as a small gathering space in July 27, 1984, has grown to become a 22,000 square foot enrichment and learning center for adults. The Senior Center is committed to enhancing seniors’ lives by providing daily lifelong learning programs, exercise classes, meal programs, health services, excursions to interesting places, computer classes, book clubs, support groups, a billiards room, social services, art classes, and much more. If you are fifty years of age or better, stop by and see what we have to offer right in your own community.

We encourage you to take a tour of the Senior Center website and discover all it has to offer!

All clients will be asked to complete a member registration form prior to participation in any program at the Senior Center. To expedite the registration process, please complete the Member Registration Form online.

Events and Programs

If you are age 50 or over, you are eligible to explore the endless possibilities at the Simi Valley Senior Center. Whether you are still in the workforce or have retired, there are a variety of volunteer opportunities, programs, and services available to keep you healthy by stimulating your mind as well as your body. 


The Simi Valley Council On Aging (COA) is an advisory body to the City Council on senior issues. They offer a variety of services and special events to raise money for the various programs available through the Senior Center.

A list of Senior Center COA Events and Senior Center Programs can be found below, by clicking the related link. Check this frequently as events and programs change.

Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District’s “AGE 50+ Program” provides day and overnight excursions designed for older adults. For a quick glimpse of the current Senior Excursions go to Senior Publications/News. For the most up to date, pricing, and other details, call the Simi Valley Senior Center at (805) 583-6363 or AGE 50+ Programs at (805) 583-6045.

Sign up to receive an email (E-Notification) each time a new Senior Publication, such as the monthly Senior News, weekly News Bytes, or monthly Council On Aging Executive Board meeting agendas, is published. You may also change your subscriptions at any time. Note: To ensure receipt of E-Notify messages, please add simivalley@simivalley.org to your spam filter’s safe list.

 
Simi Valley Senior Center:
 
 
3900 Avenida Simi, Simi Valley, CA 93063  (map) (directions)
Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday
 
 
For more information, call (805) 583-6363.
Top Elder Law and Medicaid Planning Attorney in Simi Valley, CA. James Dolenga provides Medicaid Planning, Elder Law, Estate Planning, SSDI & SSI services. Call today.

About Simi Valley, CA

Simi Valley is a city in the valley of the same name in the southeast corner of Ventura County, California, United States. Simi Valley is 40 miles from downtown Los Angeles, making it part of the Greater Los Angeles Area. The city sits next to Thousand Oaks, Moorpark, and Chatsworth.

General Information About Simi Valley

Simi Valley (/ˈsm/ (audio speaker iconlisten)ChumashShimiyi)[8][9][10] is a city in the valley of the same name in the southeast corner of Ventura County, California, United States. Simi Valley is 40 miles (65 km) from downtown Los Angeles, making it part of the Greater Los Angeles Area. The city sits next to Thousand OaksMoorpark, and Chatsworth. As of the 2020 U.S. Census the population was 126,356,[7] up from 124,243 in 2010. The city of Simi Valley is surrounded by the Santa Susana Mountain range and the Simi Hills, west of the San Fernando Valley, and northeast of the Conejo Valley. It grew as a commuter bedroom community for the cities in the Los Angeles area and the San Fernando Valley when a freeway was built over the Santa Susana Pass.

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, where the former president was buried in 2004, is in Simi Valley.[11] The Reagan Library has hosted Republican primary debates in 2012[12] and 2016.[13]

Simi Valley is a city located in the very southeast corner of Ventura County, bordering the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles County, and is a part of the Greater Los Angeles Area. The city of Simi Valley basically consists of the eponymous valley itself.[46] The city of Simi Valley borders the Santa Susana Mountains to the north, the Simi Hills to the east and south, and is adjacent to Thousand Oaks to the southwest and Moorpark to the west. Simi Valley is connected to the nearby San Fernando Valley by the Santa Susana Pass in the extreme east of Simi Valley. Simi Valley is located at 34°16’16” North, 118°44’22” West (34.271078, −118.739428)[47] with an elevation of 700–1,000 ft (210–300 m) above sea level. The syncline[48] Simi Valley is located in the western part of the region called the Transverse Ranges.[49] The valley is surrounded by the Santa Susana Mountains to the north and Simi Hills to the east and south.

Commuting into the city of Los Angeles for work is done by 27% of Simi Valley residents, with 20% working within Simi Valley.[106]

In Simi Valley there are two main areas of industry — one in the eastern part of the city and the other one in the west. The primary industry is machinery and tools with 69 firms, and the secondary is the metal Industry with 51 firms, both situated in the eastern and western industrial areas. Other industries such as Lumber/Wood Products, Food, Plastic Products, Apparel/Textiles and Minerals, are also concentrated largely in these industrial areas.

The largest division of Countrywide Home Loans, now Bank of America, Loan Administration, has been headquartered in the city since the mid-1990s. Operating from Madera Road in a building that once housed the apparel company Bugle Boy, the company also has facilities on Tapo Canyon Road, and First Street. At its height, Countrywide had approximately 10,000 employees in the city.

The Volkswagen of America Design Center was once in an industrial complex across from the Costco wholesale club near Madera and Cochran. The VW Design Center California or DCC, moved to Santa MonicaCalifornia in the spring of 2006. Such notable automotive designers as Jay Mays, now (2007) VP Design for Ford and Freeman Thomas, co designer with Jay Mays of the original Audi TT, once called the DCC in Simi Valley their place of work. The original concept for the New Beetle from Jay Mays, had its genesis there.



Driving Directions from Simi Valley to Law Offices of James Dolenga

Simi Valley, California

Get on CA-118 E from First St
4 min (1.2 mi)

Follow CA-118 E and I-405 S to Crenshaw Blvd in Torrance. Take exit 39 from I-405 S
47 min (49.7 mi)

Take W 190th St, Prairie Ave and Madrona Ave to Hawthorne Blvd
9 min (3.5 mi)

Law Office of James Dolenga
21250 Hawthorne Blvd STE 500, Torrance, CA 90503

Frequently Asked Questions About Medicaid, Medical, and Elder Law in Simi Valley

What is Elder Law?

Elder Law involves planning for the complex health care, long-term care, and other issues facing elderly and disabled individuals and their families. Studies show that we stand a 40 percent chance of needing long-term care at least once before we die. Therefore, everyone should take into account that at some point residency in a nursing home or an assisted living facility may be needed.

However, the substantial cost of nursing home care for an incapacitated person can wipe away a family’s nest egg and the inheritance planned for surviving family members. The primary alternative to privately paying the nursing home is Medicaid.

Medicaid Asset Protection Strategies

Although with the recent passage of the Deficit Reduction Act, increased restrictions affect the use of some techniques, other asset protection strategies remain viable, especially for married couples where one spouse requires long-term care. Some of these techniques may include setting up an Irrevocable Living Trust, making gifts to family members, and paying for certain Medicaid expenses.

Whether you are facing long-term care issues yourself or you have a family member who is, we encourage you to call with your questions or ask us for a free report. Be sure to call sooner rather than later because the timing of the decisions families need to make has a dramatic impact on whether or not someone can actually qualify for this type of support.

Elder Law involves planning for the complex health care, long-term care, and other issues facing elderly and disabled individuals and their families. Studies show that we stand a 40 percent chance of needing long-term care at least once before we die. Therefore, everyone should take into account that at some point residency in a nursing home or an assisted living facility may be needed.

However, the substantial cost of nursing home care for an incapacitated person can wipe away a family’s nest egg and the inheritance planned for surviving family members. The primary alternative to privately paying the nursing home is Medicaid.

Medi-Cal:

Medi-Cal is a joint federal and state program that provides medical assistance to low-income persons who are elderly, blind or disabled. However, unless you are among the minority who has long-term care insurance, most individuals contemplating paying thousands of dollars out-of-pocket every month for long-term nursing home care face the possibility of exhausting all available assets and using up their lifetime savings before being able to qualify for Medi-Cal. A qualified Elder Law Attorney can help your family by using a variety of strategies to help you qualify for Medi-Cal while preserving assets and savings for heirs.

Here’s How We Can Help

Paying for & Getting Nursing Home Care

  • Find the right nursing home
  • Create a plan to qualify for Medi-Cal benefits
  • Preserve as many of your loved one’s assets as possible
  • Apply for Veteran’s Benefits

Estate Administration

  • Probate of your loved one’s estate with a Will
  • Trust Administration of your loved one’s Living Trust

Incapacity Planning

  • Establish Guardianship

Click here to schedule your personal consultation.

Estate planning is essentially writing down your assets, who will be responsible for distributing or administering your assets in the event that you are unable to, due to incapacity or death, how you want or assets distributed or administered, and to whom you wish to leave your assets.

The assets involved in your estate can include more than just money. It can also include houses, cars, stocks, artwork, real estate investments, retirement plans, and gifts, just to name a few.

Your estate plan can direct these items be distributed outright, held in trust for a period of time, used for a specific purpose such as a grandchild’s education, or given to charity.

By having a well-written, customized estate plan, you can ensure that your wishes are carried out and your goals are achieved while protecting everything you worked for from family fights, creditors, and unscrupulous predators who may wish to take advantage of your family.

If you feel that you are no longer able to work because of physical and/or mental reasons, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability payments. To be considered disabled, you must be unable to perform any substantial work due to a physical and/or mental condition, which has lasted or can be expected to last for at least 12 months or can be expected to result in death.

SSDI eligibility is based on previous contributions to Social Security, and SSI eligibility is based on your income level.If you are found eligible for SSI payments, you may also qualify for State Supplemental Payments (SSP).

You may apply for SSDI or SSI at any Social Security office.If you have a child or children with a disability, you may also apply for SSI on their behalf.

What is Social Security Income (SSI)?

People who are disabled, blind, or elderly may not be able to work or afford to live on their own. If you can’t work, have no other sources of income, and have limited resources, you may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).


The federal government created the SSI program to help people in this situation. Those who qualify for SSI benefits get monthly cash payments to pay for those basic needs. The SSI program is run by the Social Security Administration. In California, people who get SSI also get a smaller benefit from the State Supplemental Program (SSP) included with their monthly SSI benefit.

 
In California, people who qualify for SSI also get Medi-Cal benefits automatically.

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