Texas NAELA provides continuing legal education and advocacy to promote and protect the needs of seniors and people with disabilities in Texas. Texas NAELA supports member attorneys throughout the state of Texas who are committed to the practice of elder law.
Save the Date for The NAELA-Texas Chapter’s Spring Conference
Underwritten by True Link Financial
April 9, 2015
Hilton Westchase Hotel,
9999 Westheimer, Houston, TX, 77042
Dinner with 1.25 Hours of CLE: $100.00 per person
6:00-7:00 p.m. Board Meeting
7:00-8:15 p.m. Dinner Speaker
“SSI and Attorney’s Fees Rules: When Does the SNT Planner Cross the Line Into SSI-Required Attorney Fee Approval Territory?”
David Lillesand, Attorney
Lillesand, Wolasky, and Wax, P.L., Clearwater, Florida
This topic will explore the SSI and SSI-related Medicaid and Special Needs practices that in many cases require advance approval of attorney’s fees to avoid the federal civil and criminal penalties in the Social Security Act and federal regulations. Included will be a discussion of SSA’s new rules of conduct, the safe-harbor of securing fee approval, and when approval may not be required. Attendees will also become aware of cases involving attorneys who have been disbarred for or sued for various planning practices. Forms and background materials will be provided.
8:15-9:00 p.m. Bonus Business Practices Topic (no CLE)
“Cyber Attacks, Including Those with Ransom Requirements, Part II.”
ScoNet International, Inc., Houston, Texas
This presentation will be a sequel to the cyber-attacks speech presented at the Fall Conference. The topic will be presented by ScoNet and they will advise attendees on the latest virus attacks to beware of in your practices including ransom demand attacks being experienced and how to deal with them. Also included will be information on insurance practitioners should carry for these attacks.
9:00 p.m. Adjourn
- Past President: Carol Bailey
- President: Tina R. Green, CELA
- Vice-President: Charles Kennedy
- Treasurer: Pi Yi G. Mayo, CELA
- Secretary: Christina T. Lesher
- Director: Mark R. Ensign
- Director: Janice M. Pickett
- Director: S. Clinton Nix
- Director: Bliss Pak
- Director: Dan Campbell
- Director: Stephen J. Livens
- Director: Elisa D. Rainey, CELA
- Director: Jeff Skarda
- Director: Marilyn Miller
- Director: Carol Bertsch.
Here are the Social Security and Medicaid Numbers for 2015.
Medicaid & SSI
Dollar Amounts Effective as of January 1, 2015
|Medicaid Single Income/Mo.||$2,163||$2,199|
|Medicaid Couple Income/Mo.||$4,326||$4,398|
|SSI Single Income/Mo.||$721||$733|
|SSI Couple Income/Mo.||$1,082||$1,100|
|Protected Resource Amt. Min.||$23,448||$23,844|
|Protected Resource Amt. Max.*||$117,240||$119,220|
|Spousal Monthly Allowance||$2,931||$2,980.50|
|Personal Needs Allowance||$60||$60|
|Maximum Residence Value (with exceptions)||$543,000||$552,000|
*When combined incomes of both spouses are below the Spousal Monthly Allowance, the Community Spouse can usually keep more than the Protected Resource Amount Maximum.
**For case actions before 9/1/13, the divisor is $142.92/day; on or after 9/1/13 it is $156.34/day.
Medicare & Social Security & VA
Dollar Amounts Effective as of January 1, 2015*
|Part A Premium/Mo.||$441||$426|
|Part B Premium/Mo.||$104.90||$104.90|
|Skilled Nursing Facility Copayment||$152.00||$157.50|
|Hospital Stay (Part A) Deductible||$1,216||$1,260|
|Hospital Copayment, Days 61-90||$304||$315|
|Hospital Copayment, Days 91-150||$608||$630|
|Part B (Medical) Annual Deductible||$147||$147|
|QMB max income single (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$993*||$993*|
|QMB max income couple (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$1,333*||$1,333*|
|SLMB max income single (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$1,187*||$1,187*|
|SLMB max couple (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$1,593*||$1,593*|
|QI-1 max income single (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$1,333*||$1,333*|
|QI-1 max income couple (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$1,790*||$1,790*|
|QDWI max income single (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$1,965*||$1,965*|
|QDWI max income couple (gross incl. $20 exempt amt)||$2,642*||$2,642*|
|“Substantial Gainful Activity” (Non-Blind)||$1,040||$1,090|
|Max Earnings Taxed for SS||$117,000||$118,500|
|Retirement Test Earnings/Yr, Under 65||$15,480||$15,720|
|Retirement Test Earnings in 1st Yr of Full Retirement Age**||$40,400||$41,880|
|Quarterly earnings for 1 Social Security credit||$1,200||$1,220|
|VA Pension With “Aid & Attendance”—Married||$2, 085||$2,120|
|VA Pension With “Aid & Attendance”–Unmarried Vet||$1,758||$1,789|
|VA Pension With “Aid & Attendance”–Widow(er)||$1,130||$1,149|
VA Pension that is A&A (not counted by Medicaid) in 2015: $716/mo. (or for surviving spouse, $430/mo.)
*Numbers with * effective 3/1/2014 to 2/28/2015 (dependent on Federal Poverty Guidelines)
**Full Retirement = 65 and 10 months if born in 1942 or age 66 if born in 1943-1954. Full retirement age will gradually
increase to age 67 for those born in 1960 and later.
2014 Social Security & VA Cost of Living Allowance (COLA): 1.5%; 2015 COLA: 1.7%
 99% of Social Security beneficiaries have sufficient Medicare covered quarters that they pay no Part A premium.
 The Part B premium is more for those with over $85,000 income (individual return) or $170,000 (joint return).
The Texas Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc. (NAELA) is a professional association of attorneys who are dedicated to assisting clients with public benefits, probate and estate planning, guardianship/conservatorship, and health and long-term care planning.
Texas NAELA membership is comprised of attorneys in the private and public sectors, as well as judges, professors of law, and students. Texas NAELA provides its members with continuing legal education programs, conferences, networking events and newsletters on a broad range of Elder Law topics.
Texas NAELA’s website offers visitors information about Elder Law topics and resources. Check out our Texas NAELA Blog section for more specific Elder Law information.