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First, I apologize in advance for the length of my post, but I wanted to lay out the entire situation...


Background: I am 50 with a family living in NC. I live with my husband and our 3 children who are all still in school (12, 14, and 17). My brother is 54 and living in CO by himself. He's never been married, but has an adult child who now lives in CA. My brother has COPD and currently lives at 7000 ft altitude (effectively ~20% less oxygen). He was ill recently and ended up losing quite a bit of lung capacity and now is having further difficulties breathing at altitude. I think he only has 25% capacity in one lung, not sure about the other. He's recently made the decision to leave CO behind and come live with my family in NC fairly soon. He is working with his employer to be able to work remotely out of my house (which is a definite possibility as his work is primarily computer related).


I am the breadwinner in my family making $125K and $150K depending on bonuses. My husband has a small woodworking business (sole proprietor) that he's recently started. I carry the insurance for our family through my employer.


I think my brother makes somewhere around $50K a year. He has a bit of credit card and personal debt, and very little assets (cash or belongings). He raised his daughter entirely on his own and was never able to get out of paycheck to paycheck living. He's debating on whether to file for bankruptcy although his health is his primary priority at this time.


My brother's expectation is that he'd only need to stay with us temporarily, however my husband and I expect it will end up being more permanent. We cared for my father with COPD before he died, so we are keenly aware that he is only going to continue to decline in health. We just want to slow the decline down and make it a bit easier for him to live.


I pay for Hyatt Legal as a benefit through my employer and plan to follow up with them next week. My goal with this forum is not necessarily to get definitive answers, but to understand all the things I really need to think about and/or ask to make the most of my consultation with them. I have a zillion questions swirling through my head such as...


- He lives in an apartment and his lease is up the end of January 2019. He needs to check on what the notification period is, but if it's 30 days, for example, does the fact that he's moving for health reasons benefit him? Or is that all contract specific?


- What are all the ideal medical forms he should get completed (Medical/Durable POA, HIPPA, DNR, Will, etc)?


- He's been in CO for the last 12 years or so. Will he have issues claiming unemployment in NC if he's not able to keep his job? He literally feels he has not choice for his health but to move here with us.


- Can he declare bankruptcy in NC if he's only lived here a short time?


- What typically constitutes claiming him as a dependent from a tax perspective? Can he still have a job?


- What about the tax implications of moving costs? (He's planning on selling most of his personal belongings and we will likely have his car transported).


- If I gift him some money to handle moving, is that a tax break for me?


- He works for a local company in CO and has health insurance through Kaiser. I presume they don't have employees outside of CO. If they maintain him as an employee, are they still obligated to offer him health insurance in NC?


- Might he be better off being treated as a consultant rather than an employee if he keeps his job?


- At what point would he be eligible for Social Security disability and/or Medicare/Medicaid benefits?


- If he has no job, does he miss out on Medicaid benefits if I claim him as a dependent?


- If I claim him as a dependent, am I obligated to do so for the remainder of his life?


- What else am I missing?


We want to be sure we take advantage of all the benefits to which we/he is legally entitled.


Thanks so much for taking the time to read through!

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Thank you very much for your feedback, Eyerishlass
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You asked: "He lives in an apartment and his lease is up the end of January 2019. He needs to check on what the notification period is, but if it's 30 days, for example, does the fact that he's moving for health reasons benefit him? Or is that all contract specific?"

I've always lived in apartments and within a month of my lease expiring I am notified that my lease either needs to be renewed or I need to submit a letter of intention to vacate. And I've always been told that my letter of intention to vacate needs to be submitted at least 30 days ahead of the end of the lease.

You asked: "What are all the ideal medical forms he should get completed (Medical/Durable POA, HIPPA, DNR, Will, etc)?"

HIPPA forms are given and signed on an as needed basis such as when someone is in the ER. If your brother begins seeing a doctor when he moves in with you the doctor's office will have him sign a HIPPA on his initial visit. This is something you don't have to worry about.

If your brother has assets or a pension or a retirement plan he should do a will. If he doesn't have any of these things, if he has nothing of value, a will can wait. However, he can write out his wishes so you'll know what to do according to what he wants such as what kind of funeral he wants, does he want to be buried or cremated, etc. This isn't a legal document but he should write out his wishes, sign and date it, and give you a copy.

If your brother chooses to be a DNR a lawyer will need to draw this up. Use the same lawyer to establish your POA.

When he moves in with you he should grant you POA so that you can take care of his personal financial business should he be unable to do so and so that you can make medical decisions on his behalf if he is unable to do so. This can be done through a lawyer.

You asked: "At what point would he be eligible for Social Security disability and/or Medicare/Medicaid benefits?"

Because of his current state of health he is likely eligible for Social Security disability benefits now. With that comes Medicare benefits. Medicaid is something that would have to be applied for separately. If your brother applies for SSDI on his own he's liable to be turned down the first time. I suggest you get a SSDI lawyer who will charge nothing unless your brother is granted SSDI and then the lawyer takes a percentage of the back payments your brother would be eligible for which go back all the way to the day he became disabled.

I'm not well-versed in any of the other questions you asked but I'm sure there are others who are who will be along any time now....

Good luck.
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