March 04, 2018
Every week, Simply Money’s Nathan Bachrach, Ed Finke and Amy Wagner are answering your financial questions in The Cincinnati Enquirer. If you, a friend, or someone in your family has a money issue or problem, please feel free to send those questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Linda and Don in West Chester: We’re thinking about gifting our grandkids (who are 5 and 7) some stock. What’s the best way to do this?
Answer: There are a lot of different ways you can go about gifting stock. Before you move forward with an option, be sure to consult with your trusted financial planner (preferably a Certified Financial Planner ™), a tax professional, and in certain circumstances, an attorney. Everyone has a different financial situation, so it is important to seek professional guidance.
If you want to gift stock, you could re-title your existing stocks holdings. To do this, contact your financial planner or the financial institution to do so. They will require documentation to proceed. You can also set predetermined amounts you would like to send as gifts on a regular basis.
Since both children are minors, these accounts will need to be set up as an UTMA (Uniform Transfer of Minors Act) account. These accounts are unique because you must list a custodian to manage the account until the minor reaches the state’s required age of possession, or depending on the state, you can determine what age you would like the minor to possess the account. In Ohio, the age range from which you can choose is now between 18 and 25. One important thing to consider is a gift to an UTMA account is irrevocable.
If you would like to maintain control of the stock shares, you can open a trust account. In some cases, you can convert a brokerage account to a trust account. For example, if you have a block of 10,000 shares of XYZ stock that pays dividends, you could create a trust that sends your grandchildren each year’s dividends around the holidays.
The Simply Money Point there are a couple of ways you can gift stock. Partner with your financial planner, tax professional and attorney (if you’re considering setting up a trust) to establish the best plan for you and your family.
Molly: I’ve been caring for my 83-year-old father for the last six years or so. Unfortunately, it’s become a fairly expensive act of love – I find myself spending a lot of my own money on his household needs and medical needs. Is there any way I can get reimbursed for these costs, or get paid moving forward?
Answer: It may take some research, but there are a few programs that might be able to assist you with your situation.
If your father is enrolled in Medicaid, you might be able to get paid through the “waiver” program. This program allows for individuals to be cared for in the home instead of a hospital or nursing home, and that individual chooses his or her caregiver, which can be a family member (note: spouses are excluded in some states, and in others, the caregiver can’t live in the same home). The amount the caregiver can earn varies by state, but it’s generally anywhere from from $7.25 to $15 an hour. The application process can be time-consuming and very detailed. To learn more and apply, contact the state's Medicaid office.
If your dad is a veteran, another option is through the Veteran Administration (VA). They offer a program in most states referred to as the “Veteran Directed Care” program to help veterans with elderly care assistance. Your father must require "nursing home level care," but would prefer to be cared for at home. To qualify for a stipend to pay for services and the caregiver of his choice, your father must receive health care coverage through the VA. The amount the he would qualify for is determined by the number of care hours required and the average hourly wage of a home health aide. Just know that rules for family members are strict, there are high levels of documentation needed, and there are long waiting lists.
Also, try speaking with your employer. Some companies have started offering paid caregiving leave. If your employer is one of them, determine what they’re willing to offer you, or if they’ll work with your during your time of need.
You may also want to speak with an elder care lawyer. He or she can help guide you in the right direction and help you understand what you (and your father) may be eligible for.
The Simply Money Point is that finding financial assistance to help you with your father may be time-consuming and challenging, but could be worth it. Take some time to research your situation and what you may be eligible for.
Responses are for informational purposes only and individuals should consider whether any general recommendation in these responses are suitable for their particular circumstances based on investment objectives, financial situation and needs. To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing, including a tax advisor and/or attorney. Nathan Bachrach and Ed Finke and their team offer financial planning services through Simply Money Advisors, a SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Call (513) 469-7500 or email email@example.com.