Update on Medicare and VA Benefits:

Proposed Changes to Medicare Homebound Policy:

Many people rely on Medicare to cover medically necessary home care services.  In what can best be described as an “oversight”, the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will require new criteria for purposes of meeting the homebound requirement.  This may cause many Medicare beneficiaries to lose their current home care coverage.

If the CMS implements this proposed policy, the new requirement becomes effective November 19, 2013.  The new policy changes the federal statute and the current policy from what “should usually be present to meet the homebound definition” to what “must be present”, setting a stricter standard that many beneficiaries may not be able to meet.

If you have any questions about this article,  please contact Joseph P. Mattera at (937) 223-1130 or jmattera@pselaw.com.

Supreme Court Decision Affects VA benefits: 

In its landmark June 2013 Windsor decision, the United States Supreme Court struck down a section of the Defense of Marriage Act which definedmarriage as a union between one man and one woman. Changes based on the Windsor decision have come rapidly. The Internal Revenue Service announced that it would treat legally married same-sex couples the same as heterosexual married couples.  The Pentagon extended full benefits to same-sex spouses of service members and civilian employees.

More recently, the Obama administration announced that it will stop enforcing sections of the law that provide for benefits for U.S. veterans.  The sections define marriage as between a man and a woman and deny legally married same-sex couples Veterans Affairs benefits like health care and disability payments.

Such changes affect legally married same-sex couples.  Questions have been raised in states such as Ohio which do not recognize same-sex marriages.

Joseph P. Mattera is a shareholder with Pickrel, Schaeffer and Ebeling, LPA, where he practices in the areas of elder law, estate planning and probate.  Joe is an accredited attorney with the Department of Veterans Affairs.  If you have any questions about your VA benefits, please contact Joseph P. Mattera at (937) 223-1130 or jmattera@pselaw.com.

 

AND ONE MORE THING:  PS&E  is pleased to announce that Andrew C. Storar has received the Camp Kern, Jack Singerman Award.    The award was adopted on May 5, 1976.  It is named after Jack Singerman who was the Executive Director of Camp Kern for 13 years.  The award is given to an individual who gives of his time and talent and leads by example.  It has only been presented to 9 individuals since 1976 and signifies the true meaning of integrity, responsibility and loyalty of one who has contributed to Camp Kern and carries on the “Spirit of Kern”.   Andy, is the President of Pickrel, Schaeffer and Ebeling and has nearly 30 years of experience representing entrepreneurs, individuals and businesses.   Andy serves on many other non-profit and charitable organizations, and is past president of the Kettering Education Foundation, President of Places Inc., and a member of the Ohio State Bar Foundation Board of Trustees.

 

 

AUTHOR: Jeff Senney
jsenney@pselaw.com


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