Some Thoughts On Long-Term Health Care Planning
For many persons, estate planning also includes planning for the possibility of long-term health care. Nursing home care is expensive and can require the liquidation of assets to generate the funds necessary to pay the nursing home bill unless appropriate planning has been taken. Medicaid is the joint federal/state program that pays for long-term health care in a nursing home.
To be able to receive Medicaid benefits, an individual must meet numerous eligibility requirements but, in short, must have a very minimal level of income and assets. States set their own asset limits and determine what assets count toward the limit. Assets exceeding the limit must be spent on the applicant’s nursing home care before Medicaid eligibility can be established. Read the full article here.
Two Hours of ACA CPE For $35!
We hope you'll join us on July 1, from noon to 2:00 (CST), for a review of the ACA provisions and changes that have occurred with the law since its enactment. We will review basic issues you faced during the 2015 filing season and provide additional clarification on those that were problematic. In addition, we will review some of the more difficult reconciliation issues as they relate to the Premium Tax Credit. And, we're offering two hours for the price of one! Register here or join us for another from a full slate of July webinars.
Check Out the AgDocket
We seek to keep you updated on the latest happenings in agricultural law. Follow the AgDocket to keep up with recent activity.
You may also be interested in the following updates posted to our website this month:
Supreme Court Issues Two Key Opinions This Week
This was a big week in Washington as the United Supreme Court handed down a number of important decisions. Two of these opinions are of particular importance to our audience and we review them for you here. On Monday, the Court said that the federal government had violated the Fourth Amendment rights of raisin growers and handlers by requiring them to relinquish a percentage of their crops to the USDA pursuant to a 66-year-old marketing order.
This morning, the court issued its long awaited decision on whether premium tax credits can be granted to consumers enrolling in health plans through a federally-facilitated exchange. The language of the enabling statute had stated that these credits were available on exchanges "established by the state." The Court ruled 6-3, through a Roberts-authored opinion, that this language was ambiguous and did not prevent the Administration from allowing credits to issue from an exchange established by the federal government. There was no shortage of controversy as Scalia wrote a scathing dissent, at one point stating, "We should start calling this law SCOTUScare." In upholding the Administration's application of the law, the majority stated, "Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them."
United States Supreme Court Says Raisin Marketing Order Effected Unconstitutional Taking
For more than a decade, California raisin growers have been warring with the federal government over a 66-year-old marketing order. The lead plaintiff in the case is a California raisin grower that packs and sells the raisins that he grows. Despite the arguable obscurity of the specific order at issue, the June 22, 2015, United States Supreme Court opinion striking down the order as an unconstitutional physical taking of private property has broader implications for property rights in general and other agricultural marketing orders in particular.
The Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act (AMAA) of 1937 regulates the handling of agricultural commodities in interstate or foreign commerce. The AMAA authorizes the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to fix the minimum prices of certain agricultural products, when the handling of such products occurs “in the current of interstate or foreign commerce or . . . directly burdens, obstructs or affects interstate or foreign commerce in such commodity or product thereof.” The purported idea behind the AMAA was to use marketing Orders to insure that consumers receive an adequate supply of commodity at a stable price. Read the full article here.
Supreme Court Says Premium Assistance Tax Credits Are Available To Persons Acquiring Health Insurance Via A Federal Exchange
The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in holding in a 6-3 decision (C.J. Roberts writing the majority decision) that the premium assistance tax credit (PATC) created by the 2010 health care law and contained in I.R.C. §36B is available to persons that acquire their health insurance through an exchange establish by the federal government. The Court’s decision involved a Treasury Regulation (Treas. Reg. §1.36B-2(a)(1)) that interpreted the statutory language which specifies that the credit is only available to persons that acquire their insurance through “an exchange established by the state” to mean “state or federal government.” The lower courts were split on the validity of the regulation, with the D.C. Circuit striking the regulation and the Fourth Circuit upholding it.
The IRS developed a regulation that allows taxpayers to claim the PATC even if they bought their health insurance via a federal exchange. On its face, that is contrary to what the health care law says. The law states that the PATC is only available to taxpayers that are enrolled in “an Exchange established by the State under 1311…”. Section 1311 of the health care law sets forth the assistance to be given to the states to establish health care exchanges. Read the full article here.
Donate to CALT
As you know, our work at the Center is dependent on the fees generated by seminar registrations and gifts. If you would like to donate to further the Center's efforts, please contact our Program Administrator, Tiffany Kayser at email@example.com or (515) 294-5217. You can also give online with a credit card. We thank you for your generous support.
Healthcare Coverage May Come With Estate Recovery Potential
Recent announcements of proposed rate hikes by Iowa insurers likely mean that premiums for many individual insurance policies will rise substantially in 2016. Because of these increases, thousands of Iowans who have traditionally purchased health insurance policies from a broker on the individual market may instead decide to shop for policies offered through the Affordable Care Act’s online healthcare exchange.
Iowans with lower incomes—including some farmers with high dollar farmland or other assets—may be caught off guard by their limited choices. They may also not understand how their healthcare coverage decisions today could impact their assets after they die. Read the full article here.
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Recent Case Review
Following is a sample of recent legal cases summarized on our website. See the complete collection here.
The Center for Agricultural Law and Taxation does not provide legal advice. Any information provided on this website is not intended to be a substitute for legal services from a competent professional. The Center's work is supported by fee-based seminars and generous private gifts. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in the material contained on this website do not necessarily reflect the views of Iowa State University.