Genetic Testing Scam Alert

By Kim Hill, Economic Security Client Services Manager at Elder Law of Michigan The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General has issued a Medicare fraud alert involving genetic testing kits. Fraudulent companies are offering Medicare beneficiaries access to a free screening for cancer, Parkinson’s or other conditions, claiming that Medicare will cover the cost. These companies find their victims through phone calls, … Continue reading Genetic Testing Scam Alert

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Social Security Q&A Part 21

By Vonda VanTil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Question: What is substantial gainful activity (SGA)? Answer: We use the term “substantial gainful activity,” or “SGA,” to describe a level of work activity and earnings. Work is “substantial” if it involves doing significant physical or mental activities or a combination of both. If you earn more than a certain amount and are doing productive work, we … Continue reading Social Security Q&A Part 21

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Social Security Q&A Part 20

By: Vonda VanTil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Question: Is it true I can save about $4,900 per year if I qualify for Social Security’s Extra Help with the Medicare prescription drug program? Answer: Yes. If your income and resources meet the requirements, you can save nearly $4,900 in prescription costs each year. Resource limits for 2018 are $14,100 (or $28,150 if you are married … Continue reading Social Security Q&A Part 20

Mental Health Stigmas

By Ryan Schofield, Legal Intern and Sandra Wisnewski, J.D., Director of Client Assistance at Elder Law of Michigan What do you imagine would be the reaction to someone discussing their mental health issues openly 50 years ago? Was it, “What are you, some kind of loon?” Or possibly, “You’re going to see a shrink?” While some people may have been receptive to discussing mental health, … Continue reading Mental Health Stigmas

Power of Attorney: An Overview

By Jadranko Tomic Bobas, Managing Attorney at Elder Law of Michigan In Michigan when we discuss powers of attorney (POA), we usually refer to a financial power of attorney and/or a medical power of attorney. A power of attorney is a document that delegates decision-making capacity to a third person, which is usually a family member or a trusted friend. Powers granted can be broad, specific, narrow, or … Continue reading Power of Attorney: An Overview

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Social Security Q&A Part 19

By: Vonda VanTil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Question: Can I delay my retirement benefits and receive benefits as a spouse only? How does that work? Answer: It depends on your date of birth. If you were born on or before 01/01/1954 and your spouse is receiving Social Security benefits, you can apply for retirement benefits on your spouse’s record as long as you are … Continue reading Social Security Q&A Part 19

Extra Help with Medicare and Prescription Drug Costs

By Vonda Vantil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Paying out of pocket for prescription drugs can be a burden that many households can’t afford. The Extra Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs program was designed to help people in getting the vital medicine they need to live healthy and productive lives. Anyone who has Medicare can get Medicare prescription drug coverage. Some people with … Continue reading Extra Help with Medicare and Prescription Drug Costs

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Social Security Q&A Part 18

By: Vonda VanTil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Question: I am receiving Social Security retirement benefits and I recently went back to work. Do I have to pay Social Security (FICA) taxes on my income? Answer: Yes. By law, your employer must withhold FICA taxes from your paycheck. Although you are retired, you do receive credit for those new earnings. Each year Social Security automatically … Continue reading Social Security Q&A Part 18

Do you think your income-related Medicare premium is incorrect?

By Vonda Vantil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Medicare is our country’s health insurance program for people age 65 or older. Certain people younger than age 65 can qualify for Medicare, too, including those with disabilities and those who have permanent kidney failure. If you’re a Medicare beneficiary who has been informed that you must pay more for your Medicare Part B or Medicare prescription … Continue reading Do you think your income-related Medicare premium is incorrect?

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Social Security Q&A Part 17

By: Vonda VanTil, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Question: I have diabetes and I have to take insulin. Is my insulin covered by Medicare? Answer: Medicare Part B does not cover insulin unless use of an insulin pump is medically necessary. However, certain Medicare Part D prescription drug plans may cover insulin and certain supplies used to inject insulin, like syringes. For more information, please … Continue reading Social Security Q&A Part 17