Protect assets and create a plan, says elder law expert
MUNCY – Elder law and estate planning was introduced last month to Muncy residents by Tammy A. Weber at the Muncy Public Library. The Muncy native has a long line of credentials that have led her to become an expert on long term planning care for seniors.
” I have fond memories of Muncy,” said Tammy Avery Weber and recollected the summer she spent painting the Muncy pool shower room. After graduating from Muncy High School, she graduated from Lycoming College with highest honors before attending Temple University.
In 1986 Attorney Weber was selected as a federal judicial law clerk in Philadelphia before accepting a position as Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. While there, Weber said she was “exposed to the many complexities of government benefit programs like Medicare and Medicaid.” Her research led her to win the first case for Medicare money laundering seizure in the country. Her work in the case won her the Department of Health & Human Services Inspector General’s Integrity Award.
“Long term care is a maze,” she said, and has focused her law practice on sophisticated estate planning and elder law. “It’s about protecting assets.” She stressed the importance of having a living will, “last will and testament” and a designation of someone to manage the property or estate after death.
“There are timelines involved in the process,” she explained, “and probate is court monitored. A register of wills will execute the will on behalf of the estate.”
She further explained that a non-probate is beneficiary driven and joint assets do not pass through the will. Weber also discussed powers of attorney, minor beneficiaries, uniform trusts, second marriages, marital trusts, life estates, joint beneficiaries, inheritance taxes and post nuptial agreements.
Having a conversation with family members and loved ones is a start to the process. Discuss health care and end of life issues, assign decision makers, and create a plan. “No two estates are identical.” “A family asset protection trust will protect your hard earned assets from the cost of long-term care.” Most families don’t have the resources to pay for the monthly cost of nursing home care which averages about $9000 a month.
In conclusion, Weber passed out a “conversation check list” to help get the process started among siblings and aging parents.
In 2004 Weber joined Marshall, Parker & Associates, and became a Managing Principal in 2011. She is responsible for managing and overseeing all of the operations of the firm in addition to meeting with her estate planning, long-term care and gas royalty clients.
Attorney Weber likes speaking to consumers and professional organizations across the state about elder law and is a course planner for the “Long-Term Care Planning for Seniors” program that offers credits and information for other elder law attorneys.
She has worked closely with the Pennsylvania Bar Institute (PBI) and is an active member of various professional and community organizations.
She is Chair of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Elder Law Section and Chair of the Lycoming Law Association’s Community Activities and Outreach Committee.