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Whether you're taking on Medicare open enrollment or finding yourself struggling to make financial decisions, Chattanooga is home to a host of professionals that can help you on your journey.

When Medicare open enrollment makes the rounds, it's the perfect time for seniors to jump on board, however, it can also be a potentially confusing time if you don't have the right tools and knowledge. That's where Medicare Misty and her agency can help.

"You might qualify for extra help paying for prescriptions, Medicare premium, and copays and deductibles," Misty Bolt shared, noting the many faucets of the field.

When it comes to Medicare savings programs, Bolt and her team know their stuff and work to guide clients to find the right fit for them while saving the most they can. According to medicare.gov, you can get help from your state paying your Medicare premiums. Bolt shared that in some cases, Medicare Savings Programs may also pay Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments if you meet certain conditions.

(For list of conditions, clients can visit the website under the "How do I apply for Medicare Savings Programs?" tab.)

In total, there are four kinds of Medicare Savings Programs available to those enrolling that each have various levels of assistance:

Qualified Medicare Beneficiary (QMB) Program

Specified Low-Income Medicare Beneficiary (SLMB) Program

Qualifying Individual (QI) Program

Qualified Disabled and Working Individuals (QDWI) Program

To learn more, visit ssa.gov and medicare.gov, and to learn more about Medicare Misty and her services, call her at 423-240-0794 or visit medicaremisty.com or follow her on social media (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter) (*Medicare Misty Advisors is not affiliated by, or endorsed by any government agency.)

 

Total knee replacement is a big, brutal operation with a long recovery. It is usually effective at eliminating debilitating knee pain from end stage arthritis, but it comes with some risks and a long arduous rehabilitation. Some studies have shown up to a 20 % rate of dissatisfaction after surgery. In one local orthopedic surgeon's opinion, at least half of these surgeries are not needed, instead a much safer technique that spares muscle and ligaments and utilizes a short incision and a small fraction of the amount of metal and plastic. This procedure, minimally invasive partial knee resurfacing using the Repicci technique, has been a special interest of Dr. Marty Redish for nearly 20 years.

"At least half of the patients who undergo total knee replacement today do not need the surgery in my opinion," explained Dr. Martin Redish, local surgeon who is both practicing and advocating for a new, less invasive option. "This is because they have unicompartmental arthritis and could instead get a better result with less risk and recovery with minimally invasive partial knee resurfacing (MIPKR). Roughly 60-70 percent of the knee replacements I do are partial knees; the rest I do total knee replacements."

The procedure itself consists of an outpatient surgery that utilizes a small high speed burr that requires the surgeon to freehand sculpt only the diseased portion of the knee so that small metal and plastic implants, the same material as used in total knee replacement, are implanted to patch the worn surfaces.

To learn more about MIPKR, its benefits, and whether the procedure is right for you, contact Dr. Redish's office at 423-493-5220 or visit his website at partialkneedoc.com.

 

80 years later, Beltone is still about dedication to people. They work with the same spirit, care, and passion of the company's origin. Beltone is more than just hearing aids – rather, they're hearing care partners who are there every step of the way throughout the journey to better hearing. With every new hearing innovation and breakthrough is a promise of partnership.

This year, Beltone is celebrating its 80th anniversary as one of the most trusted brands in the industry for quality products and patient care. Beltone is honored to have changed so many lives and continues to focus on the needs of their patients through dedicated research and creation of innovative hearing technologies.

"As we celebrate 80 years of serving the hearing impaired we are more focused and dedicated to using advanced audio technologies to assist those with hearing loss," said President of Beltone South, Perry Ebel.

And to that, Beltone is happy to share its newest breakthrough technology, Beltone Imagine, the first full-featured hearing aid that combines a microphone and receiver in the ear canal to capture sound just like nature intended. Using the unique shape and size of a person's ear, this breakthrough enables an unprecedented natural sound experience, addressing one of the biggest complaints of hearing aid users: "artificial" sound.

"By mimicking the way the ear captures sound, the new Beltone Imagine hearing aid breaks technology boundaries to deliver a tailored, unprecedented natural sound experience," Ebel shared.

To learn more, visit beltonesouth.com, or call your local office.

 

In 2010, the Tennessee legislature passed the Tennessee Community Property Trust Act.  A Tennessee Community Property Trust is a trust that permits resident and nonresident married couples to convert jointly owned property to community property by transferring property by deed to a Community Property Trust.  The trust is essentially a joint revocable trust for the husband and wife.

A Tennessee Community Property Trust allows for equal ownership of property by husband and wife, including a sharing in the appreciation and income from the property.  Some of the benefits of a Community Property Trust are: (a) some couples may find the equality and sharing arrangement to be a preferred form of property ownership; (b) community property receives a significant capital gains tax advantage; (c) at the death of the first spouse, 100% of property owned by the trust receives a stepped up basis to fair market value at the date of death.  

In other words, when the first spouse dies, both spouses' interest in the community property, not just the decedent's interest, receive a step up in basis for income tax purposes, up to the fair market value price.  For example, if husband and wife purchased stock 20 years ago for $250,000 and its worth $500,000 on the first spouses' death, then the surviving spouse will receive a cost basis of $500,000 for the entire property, not just on the half of the property which was owned by the decedent.  By receiving a stepped-up basis on the entire property, the surviving spouse can sell the property after the fist spouses' death without paying capital gains on the appreciation in value.

Grant, Konvalinka & Harrison, P.C., is located at Republic Centre, Ninth Floor 633 Chestnut Street and can be reached at 423-756-8400.

 

Many people are inclined to name a family member or trusted friend as trustee in their estate plan, but managing family trusts and wealth is complicated. It requires time, resources, and expertise that many families or individuals do not often have on their own.

The complications and stress of managing and administering a trust can be particularly acute during times of loss and other significant life changes. The current economic recession and ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic only deepen the anxiety families might feel about their financial futures. Serving as trustee can be a huge undertaking and it comes with certain responsibilities and liabilities. The responsibilities of a trustee can include education, administration, distribution, and investment management.

A portion of a trustee's role can include educating any current and remainder beneficiaries on trust concepts, provisions, goals, investment strategy, and budgeting. A trustee must follow the terms laid out in the trust document. Day-today administration covers many areas, but can include developing a distribution plan that takes into account current and future tax consequences, following principal and income accounting rules, managing the trust's cash flow needs, maintaining records for the preparation of trust tax returns, and coordinating family dynamics and communications in an impartial and unbiased manner.

 

Call or email Jean Jackson for more information and/or to arrange an office visit: 423-664- 9747 or jjackson@cumberlandtrust.com. Visit our website (www.cumberlandtrust.com) to learn more about Cumberland Trust's services, our teams, and general information about trust and estate administration.

 

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