Our Estate Planning Options

LEVEL 1

Basic Peace of Mind & Incapacity Planning

Protection from lifetime probate
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LEVEL 2

Living Trust Planning

Protection from after-death probate
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LEVEL 3

FlexTrust™

Future protection from long-term care costs
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LEVEL 4

Public Benefits-Focused Asset Protection

Immediate protection from long-term care costs
Learn More

Our Plan Options - Modern Estate Planning for Modern Families

LEVEL 1

Basic Peace of Mind & Incapacity Planning

Protection from Lifetime Probate

Our Level One Plan is for families who want peace of mind knowing that they will avoid the disastrous legal and financial consequences that often accompany incapacity. Level One lays the foundation for all of our higher Levels of Life Transition Planning, and is often the starting point for new clients because it provides the simplest, quickest, and least costly method of becoming a client of The Chubb Law Firm.

Your Level One plan will protect you from the public humiliation of being summoned into court to be declared mentally incompetent. This Plan will protect your loved ones from the time, inconvenience, complexities, and expenses of a “living probate” (i.e., Conservatorship) should you become incapacitated and unable to manage your own legal, financial, and medical affairs.

Your Level 1 plan provides a solid, basic plan for you and your loved ones, empowers your agent(s) to manage your legal and financial affairs using your comprehensive, Durable Power of Attorney, and ensures your health care wishes will be followed.

Includes the following: 

  • Our comprehensive, General Durable Power of Attorney, which is HIPAA-compliant and contains complete Medi- Cal asset protection powers, including full gifting and full trust creation and termination powers, and powers to manage retirement accounts;
  • Our comprehensive, Advance Healthcare Directive, which is HIPAA-compliant and contains our Long-term Care Directive and After-Death Directive;
  • HIPAA Authorization to give your loved ones the ability to talk to your doctor and insurance company
  • Up to one hour of attorney consultation time;
  • Routine drafting and signing time

If desired, a Simple Will may be added to Level 1 for a small additional fee. The Agent named in your Power of Attorney will be nominated as Executor of your Will to guide your assets through the complex, time-consuming, costly, and public process of probate after your death. (Note: Our Level 2 and Level 3 Plans avoid probate.)

LEVEL 2

Living Trust Planning

Protection from After-Death Probate

If your primary goal is to avoid the devastating legal and financial
consequences that often accompany probate after death, and you want to retain absolute and unrestricted control of your assets during your lifetime, then you need our Level 2 Plan, which builds on and includes the Level 1 Plan, but adds a Revocable “Living” Trust so that management of your assets during incapacity can be centralized, and your assets, after your death, can be transferred to your loved ones with simplicity and privacy, avoiding the time, complexities, expense and public nature that make up the “nightmare of probate.”

Though it provides no asset protection for you during your lifetime (i.e., protection from lawsuits or nursing home care costs) our Level 2 Trust can be specially designed to protect each beneficiary’s inheritance from lawsuits, divorce, and nursing home expenses. Our Level 2 Plan also includes numerous other important features not found in ordinary living trusts, such as protection for possible under-age beneficiaries, special needs beneficiaries, and any pet you may own at the time of your death.

Includes all of the Incapacity Planning provided under our Level 1 Plan, but adds a Revocable Trust and Pour-Over Will. Level 2 Planning also includes up to 2 additional hours of attorney consultation time (3 hours total) and free initial registration of your Advance Healthcare Directive with a national electronic storage and access service to help ensure that your medical wishes are known and respected when needed.

Except for deeds to real property, which we must handle, all asset
transfers will be handled by you, with detailed guidance, instructions and support from us in a customized “Funding Toolkit.”

If you have minor children, your Level 2 Pour-Over Will includes the appointment of Guardians to raise your children in the event of your untimely death. If your desired Guardians are not family members or do not live near your, then you should strongly consider adding (for a small additional fee) our proprietary Children’s SafeGuard Plan™ for your minor children so that if you are killed or incapacitated in an accident, the local officials won’t call in Child Protective Services and place your children in foster care. Each SafeGuard Plan™ consists of a set of legal documents that include an Appointment of Temporary Guardian, Consent for Medical Treatment form, and a Medical Information Form.

Your initial investment as a Level 2 client includes free review of
your plan every 3 years (changes to your plan are extra).

LEVEL 3

FlexTrust™

Future Protection from Long-Term Care Costs

If your goal is to protect your assets from the “nightmare of probate” PLUS the catastrophic financial consequences of needing nursing home care, then you need our Level 3 Plan. The FlexTrust™ that we create for you will provide general asset protection immediately upon funding, and Medi-Cal (and VA) asset protection no later than five years after funding. You are a candidate for Level 3 Planning if you are living independently and have no significant health problems that are likely to require nursing home care within the next five years.

Level 3 Planning offers you the peace of mind of knowing that the
assets you place in trust:

  • Will be protected immediately from lawsuits and other general creditors;
  • Will be protected for Medi-Cal (and VA) qualification and recovery purposes (completely after five years, with partial protection possible in less than five years);
  • May possibly be used by your beneficiaries to enhance your dignity and quality of life if and when you need nursing home care.

Whatever assets remain in your Level 3 Trust will, upon your death, be distributed to your beneficiaries, or may be held in a specially designed trusts to protect each beneficiary’s inheritance from lawsuits, divorce, and nursing home expenses.

Includes everything in Level 1 and Level 2, but uses the FlexTrust™ Asset Protection Trust as the central planning document, instead of the Level 2 Revocable Trust. Level 3 Planning also provides an additional hour of attorney consultation time (4 hours total).

Except for deeds to real estate, which we must handle, all asset
transfers will be handled by you, with detailed guidance,
instructions, and support from us.

Your initial Level 3 investment includes free introductory enrollment in the Vista™ LTC Program - our proprietary annual retainer plan that gives you: an annual review and update of your existing documents (to accommodate changes in the law, changes in your family or financial circumstances, changes of address, or changes in your wishes); answers to questions that may arise about your documents; ongoing consultations as necessary and appropriate to continue to carry out your Asset Protection Plan; and 3 years of annual registration with a national electronic storage and access service.  After the first year, there is optional enrollment in our Vista™ LTC Program. 

Provided you stay enrolled in Vista™ LTC, we will credit your initial Level 3 investment if you upgrade to Level 4 Planning.

LEVEL 4

Public Benefits-Focused Asset Protection

Immediate Protection from Long-Term Care Costs

You need Level 4 Planning if your goal is to obtain financial
assistance to help pay for care that you already receive or are likely to need in the near future, whether at home, in assisted living, or in a nursing home.

Level 4 Planning is focused not on preparation of specific documents, but rather on protecting your assets and obtaining financial benefits to help pay for your long-term care.

If you’re married, the primary goal of Level 4 Planning is to protect the financial independence of the healthier spouse. If you’re are single, the primary goals of Level 4 Planning is typically to enable you to obtain the best care possible for your remaining lifetime. We help you achieve these goals by protecting your assets to the greatest extent possible in the shortest length of time possible.

Protected assets can be used to maintain your quality of life by
purchase of goods and services not covered by Medi-Cal; goods such as dentures, hearing aids, vision aids, and personal items; services such as enhanced medical care or private caregivers to provide you an enhanced level of care.

A secondary goal of Level 4 Planning may be to preserve an
inheritance for your loved ones if that is your strong desire,
particularly if you have a needy or disabled child or someone who needs special financial help.

When care is needed imminently, the Level 4 Plan provides
comprehensive crisis planning to ensure eligibility for MediCal services. When eligible, Level 4 includes planning to obtain the Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefit.

Under Level 4, we provide you with: a written Asset Protection Plan (APP); all appropriate asset protection documents; all research, conferences, advice, expertise, and other services necessary to achieve the desired goals; and unlimited consultations between you and our attorneys and staff as necessary to design and implement the APP consistent with your needs, goals, and desires, and to carry out the APP to completion prior to filing for Medi-Cal and/or Veterans Pension benefits. Court solutions may be required to accomplish your goals.

How much can we protect? Under current California law, we can
generally protect 100% of your assets, regardless of how the assets are titled. This will be changing in the near future, but you can still expect us to be able to protect 50% to 80% of your assets.

Your initial Level 4 investment includes everything explained above for a full year. After the first year, there is optional enrollment in our Vista™ LTC Program. Provided you stay enrolled in Vista™  LTC, we will handle all annual Medi-Cal (and VA) filing and consult with you as necessary to carry out all aspects of your Level 4 Asset Protection Plan.

Additional Life Transition Planning Services: The Four Levels of Life Transition Planning described above satisfy the needs of the majority of clients. However, there are several situations that necessitate additional trusts and planning methods. For example, if you have a beneficiary with Special Needs, you should generally add a Stand Alone Special Needs Trust to your Level 2 or Level 3 Plan. If you have significant wealth inside a Qualified Retirement Plan, you may want to consider a Retirement Inheritance Trust™ to protect the stretch-out of your retirement plan distribution over the life expectancy of each of your beneficiaries.

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CLIENT Story

A wonderful job! After watching my family deal with litigation after a death, this is so important for everyone, young and old.
Michele

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