We at Dennis Christensen, P.A. can show you how to use the legal system to your advantage and how to avoid the pitfalls and small print that trips up many in their time of need. We will be your attorney, your counselor, and your knowledgeable friend as you seek out the best solutions possible for some of life’s most important decisions.
Though many of our clients contact us when they are in crisis, are overwhelmed with making end-of-life decisions, or are feeling the pressure of caring for a loved one, we strongly encourage our clients to contact us before the crisis occurs. The sooner legal advice is sought, the more options a person has.
Our clients are typical of the millions of people who are trying to deal with the problems facing our aging citizens. They’ve worked hard, planned for their future, and done everything they are supposed to do. Now, often suddenly, all of the issues surrounding their long-term disability threaten to overwhelm them.
When death, a long-term disability, or a health crisis befalls a beloved family member, the family doesn’t have to be alone. Dennis Christensen has been practicing Elder Law since 1993 and opened Dennis Christensen, P.A. in 1996. Since then, we have been the champions of those families facing the long-term disability or the loss of a loved one. We work to help preserve families’ resources by developing estate plans and strategies that extend our clients’ assets and by helping our clients qualify for available public benefits.
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The preparation of documents is crucial but we do so much more. We help clients develop a plan that provides for the client and his or her family in the event of the client’s incapacity or death. We help develop a plan that will permit our clients to remain in control of themselves and their assets for as long as possible. We use our expertise and experience to help our clients anticipate problems that may develop in the future and devise solutions to their problems. Our legal support is enhanced by our ability to counsel in broad areas of estate planning, disability, and elder law. We see ourselves as not just attorneys but counselors as well.
We are committed to providing a warm and friendly legal experience for our clients. We want our clients to share their hopes, concerns, and problem with us so that we can help them in any way possible. No issue or problem is too small. Small things don’t have to become big problems if handled early. Recognizing challenging situations early can often alleviate later difficulties.
We encourage our clients to remain in touch with us after their documents are signed. Documents reflect your needs and circumstances at the time they are signed. As your circumstances change, your documents may need to be modified as well. We want to make sure your documents are kept current. We don’t want our clients to take their newly-signed documents home, put in a safe place and then forgotten, hoping that any change in the clients’ circumstances won’t make the documents inadequate in their time of need. We are committed to being available to you in keeping your documents relevant and ensuring that your unique goals are met.
Using advanced technology, we will continue to serve our clients in the most beneficial manner to accomplish life plans and goals. We have and maintain a website that is designed to keep our clients up-to-date on recent developments in the law or programs that may affect them. This allows us to better ensure that our clients will keep their estate plans and Medicaid plans current and in accordance with their life plans and goals. We also offer the added benefit of giving clients access to their important legal documents anywhere in the world via a secure Web page created specifically for each client.
Communication is essential for achieving client satisfaction. We believe contact (in person, as well as via telephone, emails, and web correspondence) with our clients is important both while we are developing plans and documents and after the documents are signed. We are dedicated to being responsive in a timely fashion to all communication. We seek and welcome input, feedback, and comments at any time. We encourage telephone calls and emails from our clients and will do everything we can to return all calls within 24 hours, excluding weekends and holidays.
We charge flat fees for estate planning and Medicaid planning clients. Before you hire us, you’ll know exactly what the legal fees will be. Once agreed upon, the fee will never change. You don’t have to worry about surprises at the end.
Apollo is our firm’s pet and friend. He is ready to address any pet-related legal issues you may have (See Ask Apollo).
We care about you. You will find our staff competent, professional, responsible, and responsive to your questions and needs.
Our firm provides the following services:
We can develop a plan to protect at least 1/2 of your assets from nursing home costs.
We can help you protect your home.
We can help you protect assets even if a loved one is already in a nursing home
We can help you qualify for Medicaid even if you have made gifts within the 5-year “look-back” period.
We can show you why there doesn't have to be a two-year waiting list for a Medicaid bed.
We can help you develop a Medicaid plan that will help protect your assets from Estate recovery.
We can help our client get his or her affairs in order by making sure there is a will or trust that meets our client’s needs. We can develop a durable power of attorney so that his or her bills and financial affairs can be handled by a person of their choosing instead of the probate court in a conservatorship. We can also help you develop a health care power of attorney that lets you decide if you want to be an organ donor, be kept alive by machines, or have tube feeding if you ever become terminally ill or permanently unconscious.
We can help a client become eligible to receive Medicaid and Veterans benefits to help pay for home care, assisted living care, or nursing home care.
We can help you explore ways of paying for long-term care, such as long-term care insurance and reverse mortgages.
We help the families of a person who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, or terminal or chronic illness to develop a plan to care for their loved one and enhance their life. This includes addressing the issues of medical care, financial care, and managing the day to care of the person.
We can help you develop a plan to help manage your financial affairs during your lifetime and to provide for the distribution of your assets at your death.
We can explain to you the advantages of a trust over a will, including how to avoid probate at death, how a trust can be beneficial if you become incapacitated during your lifetime, and how to maintain privacy of your assets and estate plan from public disclosure.
We help you develop a durable power of attorney to help manage your assets if you become incapacitated.
We can explain to you why a health care power of attorney is necessary so that your wishes concerning medical treatment will be followed by people chosen by you instead of the probate court.
We can help you develop trusts to protects assets that you want to give:
to a spouse or someone else with disabilities,
to a minor or child with disabilities,
to a spendthrift child, or child with an alcohol or drug problem,
to a child or person with creditor or marital problems.
We can help you develop a will for a healthy spouse that will establish a trust for him or her and protect the healthy spouse from having to be to paid the ill spouse's long term care expenses at the healthy spouse's death.
We can help you develop trusts to hold assets transferred to family members to become eligible for Medicaid or Veterans benefits (aid and attendance).
We can develop a plan to protect your minor child or child with disabilities if you die or suddenly become incapacitated.
We can assist a Veteran or his/her spouse in obtaining a monthly check from the Veterans Administration that can be used to pay for home care, assisted living care, or nursing home care.
We can help a Veteran or his/her spouse in obtaining Veterans benefits (aid and attendance) without making him/her ineligible for Medicaid benefits if nursing home care becomes necessary at a later time.
We can help a client get Veterans benefits to pay for home care provided by a family member.
We can help you make sure that if you have a disability, you will have a long-term care plan that will ensure you will be taken care of – not according to the legal system’s standards – but according to your standard.
We can help you avoid losing assets as well as your eligibility for public benefits, such as SSI, Medicaid, subsidized housing, and food stamps to be lost or adversely affected.
We will help you develop a durable power of attorney and a health care power of attorney so that if you become disabled, you can choose the person to be responsible for making financial and medical decisions if the time ever comes when you can’t make decisions for yourself.
We can help prepare a special needs trust to preserve the eligibility for Medicaid and SSI of a person who has received a personal injury or the inheritance of a person who is disabled.
We can help a client obtain benefits from other programs in the community to help enhance his or her quality of life.
We can help parents, family members, and friends who want to provide an inheritance to a person with disabilities, or to create a third party special needs trust so that the inherited assets will not cause the disabled person to lose his or her SSI and Medicare.
We will help a client determine whether a special needs trust or other type of planning strategy is needed to protect against a loss of public eligibility.
We help determine if a pool trust is the best way to protect public benefits.
We can help you formulate a plan which addresses the living situation, the social life, and financial condition of a person with special needs to provide for his or her care.
We can help a person named as Personal Representative probate an estate from start to finish, or assist in the specific aspects of the probate process
We can represent beneficiaries of a will to ensure they receive all of the assets they are to receive under a Will or Trust. This includes challenging a will or trust and the distribution of assets or personal property.
We can assist you in becoming appointed Guardian of the person and property of your loved one who is unable to make his or her own important decisions to insure that your loved one will be secure and cared for and that you will be in control of decisions pertaining to his or her person and property.
We can assist you in becoming appointed Conservator of your loved one to ensure that your loved one’s bills are paid, his or her money isn’t spent indiscriminately, and that money is spent in the best possible way to preserve as much of the person’s money for their future as possible.
What is a pet to do when something happens to you? Dennis' dog, Apollo, is a Bichon Frisé with a
nose for pet issues (cats too) and is a real problem solver.
Ask him your pet-related questions.
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