Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Jobs Report Offers Mixed Message On Disability Employment

From Disabilityscoop.com

The unemployment rate for Americans with disabilities fell significantly in the latest jobs report from the U.S. Department of Labor, but that doesn’t tell the whole story.

The jobless rate declined to 11.1 percent in July, the Labor Department said, down from 12.1 percent the month prior.

However, the shift appears to be at least partly due to fewer people being counted in the total disability population that the monthly jobs report reflects.

While less people were unemployed in July than the month prior, the number of employed people also dropped and the participation rate — which measures the number of people who are employed or actively looking for work — actually declined slightly as well.

At the same time, the economy added 255,000 jobs and the unemployment rate for the general population remained steady at 4.9 percent.

Federal officials began tracking employment among people with disabilities in October 2008. There is not yet enough data compiled to establish seasonal trends among this population, so statistics for this group are not seasonally adjusted.

Data on people with disabilities covers those over the age of 16 who do not live in institutions. The first employment report specific to this population was made available in February 2009. Now, reports are released monthly.

Written by: Shaun Heasley

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Important Information for CPAs!!!!

If you advise the elderly, click on this link to read important information regarding Medicaid Eligibility & Spousal Responsibility.


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Approval of Medicaid Dollars to Fight the Zika Virus

From TheHill.com

States can use Medicaid dollars to pay for tools to fight the Zika virus such as mosquito repellent and condoms, according to a new memo from the Obama administration.

The five-page letter, distributed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Wednesday, offers long-awaited guidance for states looking to bolster their response to the mosquito-borne virus without extra funding from Congress.  

For the first time since the beginning of the epidemic, the White House is taking steps to clarify how existing state funding can be used to fight the disease at a time when it says it is short more than $1 billion to fight the disease nationally.

President Obama has requested $1.9 billion for the domestic and international effort. The Senate has lowered that total figure to $1.1 billion, while the House has said it will provide $677 million — two amounts that congressional leaders will work to reconcile after the weeklong Memorial Day recess.
The White House has already moved about a half-billion dollars from its Ebola virus fund to speed up the national response. 

CMS's letter told states for the first time that they can receive Medicaid reimbursement for over-the-counter insect repellents when prescribed by a healthcare provider.

Written by: Sarah Ferris

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Legal Recourse for Aging Parents When Their Adult Children Won't Visit?!?!?

 In Shanghai, not visiting elderly parents could harm children's credit ratings

Posted 4/7/2016

From China Daily - Children in Shanghai who fail to visit their parents regularly will find their credit standing adversely affected, according to a new rule set to take effect on May 1.

If a child refuses to visit an elderly parent, the parent can file a lawsuit. If the child still refuses to follow through with their obligations after the court makes a ruling, it will be recorded into a credit platform, which could adversely affect their future work and general life.

The rule, aimed at better protecting the rights and interests of senior citizens, also requires children who have sent their parents to nursing homes to regularly visit. If they fail to do so, nursing services have an obligation to remind them.

Shanghai has also stepped up legal support for senior citizens, including a series of free authentication services.

The city had a registered population aged over 60 of about 4.36 million by the end of 2015. The number will surpass 5 million by 2018, and exceed 5.4 million by 2020, according to statistics released by local authorities.


Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Four Social Security Myths Debunked

From Elder Law Answers

Social Security card and cashThere are a lot of misconceptions surrounding the Social Security system. Here are four common myths and the truth about how Social Security works and its future prospects.

Myth 1: You Should Collect Benefits Early
This is one of the biggest Social Security myths. In 2015, more than half of Social Security recipients began collecting benefits before their full retirement age (66 for those born between 1943 and 1954), potentially costing themselves thousands of dollars in additional benefits. If you take Social Security between age 62 and your full retirement age, your benefits will be permanently reduced to account for the longer period you will be paid.
On the other hand, if you delay taking retirement, depending on when you were born your benefit will increase by 6 to 8 percent for every year that you delay, in addition to any cost of living increases. There are a lot of factors that go into the decision as to when to take Social Security benefits, but if possible it is usually better to wait until your full retirement age or older.

Myth 2: Your Money Goes into an Account with Your Name on It
When you pay into Social Security, the money is not set aside in a separate account, as with a 401(k) or IRA. Instead, your contributions are used to pay current recipients. When you start receiving benefits, people paying into the system will be paying your benefits.

Myth 3: Social Security Will Be Out of Money Soon
Many young people believe the Social Security system will run out of money before they have a chance to collect anything. Currently, the Social Security trustees predict that the trust fund will run out of money in 2034. Politically, it seems unlikely that Congress and the President would let this happen. Changes will likely be made to the system by either raising taxes (such as by lifting the cap on income subject to Social Security tax), reducing benefits for high-income individuals, increasing the retirement age, or doing something else that will allow Social Security to be fully funded. However, even if the trust dries up and there isn't enough money to pay all the promised benefits, people will still be paying into the system and Social Security will be able to pay at least 75 percent of benefits.

Myth 4: If You Haven't Worked, You Cannot Collect Benefits
If you haven't worked outside of the home, you will not be able to collect Social Security benefits on your own record, but you may be able to collect them based on your spouse or ex-spouse's record. Spouses are entitled to collect as much one half of a worker's retirement benefit. This rule applies to ex-spouses as well, as long as the marriage lasted at least 10 years and the spouse applying for benefits isn't remarried.
To learn more about Social Security, click here.