Walk to End Alzheimer’s 2017

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It is the sixth leading cause of death in America.

One in three seniors die from this disease.

More than 5 million Americans are living with it.

What disease is it? Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that destroys memory and other important mental functions. It’s the only cause of death in the top 10 in the United States that cannot be prevented, cured, or slowed. Someone in America develops Alzheimer’s every 66 seconds. Not only are those with Alzheimer’s affected but also their families, friends, and caregivers are affected. There are more than 15.9 million caregivers for those with Alzheimer’s or other dementias in the United States. In 2015, those 15.9 million caregivers provided an estimated 18.1 billion hours of unpaid care valued at $221.3 billion. Alzheimer’s will cost the United States $236 billion.

What can be done about Alzheimer’s? The Alzheimer’s Association endeavors to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support, and research through the Walk to End Alzheimer’s event. This event is the largest like it in the world. It calls on participants of all ages and abilities to unite in ending Alzheimer’s. Our local Fort Wayne Walk to End Alzheimer’s will be held at Parkview Field on October 7, 2017. There is no fee to register but fundraising is encouraged in order to contribute to the cause and raise awareness. The Alzheimer’s Association provides free, easy-to-use tools and staff support to help participants reach their fundraising goal.

Do you want to help end Alzheimer’s? Join our fundraising team. The Walk will be held at Parkview Field, 1301 Ewing St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802 on Saturday, October 7, 2017. Registration begins at 10:00 a.m. and the ceremony at 11:30 a.m. with the Walk immediately after. If you can’t make it to the Walk, you can donate to our team in support of Alzheimer’s. Your funds will be used to further the care, support and research efforts of the Alzheimer’s Association. Thank you for your support to end Alzheimer’s.

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Country Star Glen Campbell Dies of Alzheimer’s

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Glen Campbell, country star in the 1960s-70s and known for his music and comedy variety show The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour on CBS, died on August 8 due to Alzheimer’s. Campbell made history by winning four Grammys in the country and pop categories in 1967. He sang such songs as “Rhinestone Cowboy,” “Galveston,” and “Wichita Lineman.” Campbell also appeared in a supporting role in the film True Grit (1969) and sang the title song for the film. Sadly, in 2011, Campbell was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Rather than retreating, Campbell bravely went on a farewell tour in 2011-12 that dealt with his illness and decline.

This tour was the subject of an award-winning 2014 documentary titled “Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me.” The film documented his decline with Alzheimer’s, how his band supported him on stage when he forgot the chords and how his fans finished the song when he forgot the lyrics. Despite his illness, Campbell remained happy and upbeat. His family became his caregivers, and the film shows how the family helped Campbell navigate places that had once been familiar to him, such as his home, the stage, and the recording studio. 

Campbell courageously advocated for Alzheimer’s awareness and helped to remove some of the stigma associated with the disease. After the film aired, Director James Keach said people came up to him “who had family members or themselves had Alzheimer’s who said, ‘I no longer feel ashamed.'” His daughter, band mate, and caregiver, Ashley Campbell, said she was glad her father’s honesty about Alzheimer’s helped so many people to “not feel so alone.”

More than 5 million Americans suffer from Alzheimer’s, and every 66 seconds someone develops Alzheimer’s. You can help advance Alzheimer’s support, care, and research by participating in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.

 

Source: ABC News “Glen Campbell’s Public Alzheimer’s Battle Set His Legacy” by Kristin M. Hall

INvestABLE

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Last year, we highlighted a new provision offered to families with disabled children called ABLE accounts. ABLE accounts (which stands for Achieving a Better Life Experience) are intended to create tax-free savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. The goal of these accounts is to ease the financial strains faced by individuals with disabilities and their families. These accounts supplement, rather than replace, the benefits someone may already be receiving, such as through private insurance, Medicaid, or other sources.

Now, Indiana has received the state funding to implement and create this program under the name INvestABLE. The new INvestABLE program helps disabled individuals to save money while preserving their government-assisted benefits like SSI and Medicaid. The earnings on your investments are federally tax-deferred and tax-free if used for qualified disability expenses. Qualified disability expenses include any expense incurred as a result of living with a disability and that is intended to improve your quality of life. This would include things such as education, health and wellness, housing, transportation, legal fees, financial management, employment training and support, adaptive technology, personal support services, oversight and monitoring, and funeral and burial expenses.

Previously, individuals were required to keep their resources under $2,000 to qualify for SSI and Medicaid. With the ABLE accounts, an individual can save up to $14,000 per year and up to $100,000 total in the account. Balances of $100,000 or less are excluded from your SSI resource limit. Only the amount over $100,000 is counted against your limit.

You can open an ABLE account quickly and easily here. Just tell them a little bit about yourself and select your investments. That’s it. You can easily access your account at any time, from a PC, tablet, or mobile device. Plus, you can get started with as little as $25.

In celebration of this new program, the Indiana Treasurer of State and the Indiana ABLE Authority will be hosting a launch event in Fort Wayne at the Turnstone Center on August 30.

Monthly Tour Programs for Individuals with Early-Stage Dementia

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On the third Tuesday of each month, the Fort Wayne Museum of Art will host tour programs specially designed for individuals with an early-stage diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or another form of early-stage dementia. Museum guides who have been trained to effectively communicate with individuals with early-stage dementia diagnoses will be leading the tours. The program is a partnership between the Fort Wayne Museum of Art and the Alzheimer’s Association Greater Indiana Chapter. It is designed to provide an experience of the visual arts to individuals with an early-stage diagnosis of dementia  in a way that meets their needs.

This new program is modeled after the Museum of Modern Art’s program in New York City, which was developed during its Alzheimer’s project initiative from 2007 to 2014. From that project, the Museum of Modern Art developed training materials to be adapted for museums across the country. These training materials were implemented at the Indianapolis Museum of Art with great success. Therefore, the Alzheimer’s Association Greater Indiana Chapter staff felt that program could also be successful in Fort Wayne.

Tours are free of charge for participants and their caretakers and are held on the third  Tuesday of each month at 2:00 p.m., lasting about an hour. If you are interested in bringing a loved one with dementia to the monthly tours, you must call the Fort Wayne office of the Alzheimer’s Association first at 800-272-3900 to have your loved one pre-screened. Individuals will not be able to participate in the program unless they are first pre-screened for an early-stage diagnosis and you register for the program by calling the Alzheimer’s Association.

2017 Tour Dates: August 15, September 19, October 17, November 21, and December 19.

ICLEF Natalie Choate Webcast

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On September 13, our firm will be hosting an ICLEF national speaker seminar right here in our office! The seminar will be shown live via webcast at Troyer & Good law firm. It will be featuring Natalie Choate, Boston attorney and expert on estate planning and retirement benefits. The topic for this seminar is “Estate & Distribution Planning for Retirement Benefits.” This intensive course is designed for professionals who are experienced in general estate planning. It is also designed to add to your expertise with in-depth knowledge of how to integrate retirement benefits into clients’ estate plans.

According to the ICLEF website, this popular seminar has never been more timely, as unlimited Roth conversions and the “portable” federal estate tax exemption offer new planning opportunities (and pitfalls) for your clients.  The following topics will be discussed:

  • Understanding the minimum distribution rules of Code section 401(a)(9).
  • Making retirement benefits payable to trusts
  • How to integrate benefits in the typical estate plan
  • Representing Survivors: “The Pre-Owned Retirement Plan”
  • Roth retirement plans
  • “Charitable Planning with Retirement Benefits”
  • Unconventional IRA investments; prohibited transactions
  • Lump sum distributions, Pre-age 59½ distributions

This course will introduce you to everything you need to know regarding your estate planning clients’ IRAs and other retirement plans. You will learn about the following:

  • The minimum required distribution (MRD) rules: key to maximizing the value of your clients’ benefits. How to comply with the “MRD rules,” avoid penalties, and qualify for “stretch IRA” treatment, including lifetime and post-death MRDs, separate accounts.
  • Practical ways to fit retirement benefits into the typical estate plan; the six possible choices of beneficiary (three tax-favored, three not); planning for possible law changes.
  • The two types of trusts that automatically qualify for “see-through” treatment under the MRD rules, and when qualification matters. When and how to name a marital, credit shelter or other trust as beneficiary.
  • Case studies: trust for minors, special needs, second marriage.
  • Plus special situations, where your key knowledge can save big dollars for certain clients: pitfalls of IRA real estate and small-business investing; 10% penalty for pre-age 59½ distributions; how to advise the IRA beneficiary; disclaimers and other post-death cleanup strategies; spousal rollovers; and fixing IRA mistakes.

This course will count for 6 CLE (or 7.2 CPE) credit hours. Details for attending the event:

Date: September 13, 2017

Schedule:

8:00 A.M.       Registration
8:30 A.M.       Program Begins
11:40 A.M      Lunch (ICLEF providing)
12:20 P.M.      Program Resumes
3:30 P.M.        Adjournment

The agenda includes a 10 minute break in the morning and afternoon

Location:

Troyer & Good, PC
6303 Constitution Drive
Fort Wayne, IN 46804

Seating: Seating is limited to 10 attendees.

Pricing: Tuition – $395 ; Pass+ Holder – $0

Registration: Register here.

If you have any questions or would like to register for the event, please visit here or contact ICLEF.

VLP Receives Pro Bono Service Award

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The Volunteer Lawyer Program of Northeast Indiana received a pro bono service award in recognition of its bankruptcy program. The award was presented to the VLP at the 66th Annual 7th Circuit Bar Association meeting held in Indianapolis on May 1. The bankruptcy panel that received the award comprises over 25 attorneys committed to helping people without adequate funds achieve equal access to quality legal representation.

The award presentation and dinner was held at the JW Marriott in Indianapolis in conjunction with the 7th Circuit Judicial Conference. Attendees were honored to hear the following featured speakers: Hon. Elena Kagan, Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the United States and Eva Mozes Kor, survivor of the Holocaust and founder of the CANDLES Holocaust Museum and Education Center. Ms. Ruth de Wit, Executive Director of the Volunteer Lawyer Program, gratefully accepted this prestigious award on behalf the volunteers and in recognition of the countless hours of pro bono service provided over many years in Northeast Indiana.

The Volunteer Lawyer Program of Northeast Indiana serves families and individuals at 200% or below the federal poverty guidelines in many areas of civil law. Over 200 volunteer attorneys representing northeast Indiana make up the panels of legal expertise, including our very own Tracy Troyer and Leah Good. Tracy and Leah specifically help individuals in services of estate administration, estate planning, and guardianship.

Those seeking assistance from the VLP must first call the office to see if they qualify for the program. Qualification is based on household income and assets, case type, and availability of volunteer attorneys. Callers should be prepared to provide this personal financial information when they call.  Once a client qualifies for the program, he/she will need to provide the VLP with the necessary financial and legal documents required for the successful completion of the qualification process. Staff members from the VLP then attempt to place the client with a volunteer attorney.

For more information, check out their website.

Pro Bono Community Service Project

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The Probate, Trust& Tax Section of the Allen County Bar Association is facilitating a pro bono community service project. Volunteer attorneys are providing estate planning documents to the residents of Fairington Apartments in Fort Wayne. The basic estate planning documents include Last Wills and Testaments, Powers of Attorney, and Advance Directives for Health Care. The Fairington Apartments is a senior preferred low-income housing apartment complex that is subsidized by HUD. There are at least 49 residents being assisted by this project. Our attorneys, Tracy Troyer and Leah Good, are volunteering to draft documents for the project.

The goal of this project is to help low-income individuals have a basic estate plan in place. An estate plan is essential for all individuals. The Last Will and Testament directs how your property will be distributed and who will be in charge of your estate. You can also name who will be guardian of your minor and/or disabled children. The Power of Attorney appoints someone to act on your behalf in financial matters when you are unable to do so. Lastly, the Advance Directives for Health Care appoints someone to make health care decisions for you when you are unable to do so. All of these documents are important and essential to having a complete basic estate plan. If you do not have all (or some) of these documents in place, our attorneys would be happy to help you put those in place.

Pajama Drive and Brunch

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This Saturday Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program of Northeast Indiana is hosting a pajama drive from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Anyone is invited to come! There will be a free brunch, some pampering, and a little bubbly. While there is no fee to attend, you should bring a donation of a new pajama set or gown (any size or gender) and/or a small financial donation. The goal of this event is to help the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program share comfort and warmth with our nursing home neighbors in need. The event will feature vendors promoting wellness, Valentine gift ideas, and food. If you’d like to attend, RSVP online at www.doingthegood-ombudsman.org/brunch-event. Or contact Linda Hecht at 260-443-1836 or support@dtg-ombudsman.org. 

Long-Term Care Ombudsman helps protect the rights of aging adults in over 80 local nursing homes and assisted living facilities. The program aims to improve the quality of life and care for residents of long term care facilities. It accomplishes this mission through investigation and resolution of individual complaints, consumer education designed to inform and empower consumers, system advocacy which includes legislation and public policy activities, promotion of community involvement in long term care, and other activities designed to improve long term care delivery and oversight. 

Come out this weekend to support the Ombudsmen and our local nursing home residents! 

When: Saturday, February 11 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm

Where: Parkview Field Lounge, 1301 Ewing Street, Fort Wayne, IN 

Who: Anyone can attend! 

VolunteerMatch – Exciting Opportunities

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VolunteerMatch is a non-profit organization that brings together volunteers and various non-profit organizations. Its goal is to provide an online community for people who want to enrich their lives and the world around them by volunteering. It purpose is to bring good people and good causes together to form lasting relationships that benefit everyone involved. VolunteerMatch aims to build services that overcome the barriers that keep volunteers and non-profits from finding each other and working together. VolunteerMatch has 89,135 active opportunities listed and 110,231 participating non-profit organizations. Since 1998, VolunteerMatch has made 11,538,072 referrals. It has connected millions of people who want to volunteer with tens of thousands of organizations who need volunteers.

The website is simple to use. If you are a volunteer, you can use VolunteerMatch to connect with a cause that needs you. VolunteerMatch has over 100,000 organizations in need of volunteers around the world. The website lists local listings for the area you choose. If you see a listing that interests you, you can click the listing for more details. If you want to volunteer for the organization, simply create an account. You can also search the website by cause. For example, if you want to help volunteer with animals, you can search the website by volunteer opportunities involving animals. This search will bring up all listings related to animals in your area. The website also has virtual listings, which allow people to volunteer from home anywhere. You can set up your account to receive customized recommendations.

You can also benefit from this website if you are a non-profit organization. Schools, 501(c) non-profits, and other organizations are welcome to join VolunteerMatch. You simply sign up for your organization, post a listing, and get notifications about interested volunteers. Then, you can respond directly to the volunteers. The website offers free webinars to train organizations on how to effectively involve volunteers in the important work of your organization. From recruiting to managing, VolunteerMatch offers help and guidance to non-profits along the way. It offers a variety of tools and services to help organizations recruit new volunteers, manage volunteers and prospects, and become a great place to volunteer. One organization described VolunteerMatch as “a supermarket of volunteer talent.” VolunteerMatch is free to join (with a basic account) and easy to sign up.

Get started with VolunteerMatch today!

Free Screening of “Being Mortal”

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Fort Wayne’s Visiting Nurse is hosting a free screening of the PBS program “Being Mortal” on November 1 at 6:00 p.m. The screening will be held at the Visiting Nurse’s Peggy F. Murphy Community Grief Center at 5920 Homestead Road. After the screening, audience members can participate in a guided conversation on how to take concrete steps to identify and communicate wishes about end-of-life goals and preferences.

“Being Mortal” delves into the hopes of patients and families facing terminal illness. The film investigates the practice of caring for the dying and explores the relationships between patients and their doctors. It follows a surgeon, Dr. Atul Gawande, as he shares stories from the people and families he encounters. When Dr. Gawande’s own father gets cancer, his search for answers about how best to care for the dying becomes a personal quest. The film sheds light on how a medical system focused on a cure often leaves out the sensitive conversations that need to happen so a patient’s true wishes can be known and honored at the end. “Being Mortal” emphasizes the importance of planning ahead and talking with family members about end-of-life decisions.

Seventy percent of Americans say they would prefer to die at home, but in reality, most Americans die in hospitals or institutions. Ninety percent of Americans know that they should discuss end-of-life decisions, yet only twenty-seven percent actually do so. These end-of-life conversations are necessary to make sure your loved ones are well-aware of your wishes and that these wishes are honored at your death.

In February 2015, “Being Mortal” aired nationally on PBS. This free screening is made possible by a grant from The John and Wauna Harman Foundation in partnership with the Hospice Foundation of America. Visiting Nurse is joined by Aging and In-Home Services to present this screening. Light refreshments will be served.

For more information and to RSVP, please contact Director of Communications Bonnie Blackburn-Penhollow at (260) 435-3212 or visit their website.