Lee M. Holmes – Lee is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma School of Law and has practiced law in Oklahoma City since 1963. His practice primarily involves Elder Law matters, including helping people qualify or stay qualified for Medicaid benefits, and financial planning for the disabled or for disabled beneficiaries. In 1987, Lee was one of the founders of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) and in 1989 was elected to the Board of Directors. There are now over 4,500 NAELA members. Lee was elected as a Fellow of NAELA in 1995 by his fellow members. Lee was one of the first 55 attorneys in the United States to be Certified as an Elder Law Attorney (CELA) by the National Elder Law Foundation, the only national certification program accredited by the American Bar Association for qualification as a specialist in Elder Law. Lee was the only NAELA member to attend every NAELA regular educational meeting (Symposiums, Institutes, UnPrograms and Joint Conferences of Law and Aging) for the first 23 years of the organization.
Among Lee’s accomplishments are:
More than 30 articles have been published by Lee.
In the last 20 years, Lee has attended over 60 national seminars and meetings (over 600 sessions) outside of Oklahoma that focused on Medicaid and other Elder Law issues and disability issues.
Lee’s successful Oklahoma cases and matters include:
The first spousal impoverishment case under the 1988 federal law, which protects assets and income for the at home spouse of a nursing home resident;
The first Oklahoma Fair Hearing to increase the Community Spouse Resource Allowance (CSRA) above the statutory minimum portion;
The first Oklahoma Court case to increase the Minimum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance (MMMNA) for the Community Spouse;
The first Special Needs Trust under 42 U.S.C.A. 1396p (d)(4)(A) to preserve assets for a disabled person under the age of 65 years;
The first Sole Benefit Trust under 42 U.S.C.A. 396p (c)(2)(B)(iv) to permit transfer of assets to a family member without causing Medicaid gifting penalty;
The first Medicaid Income Trust under 42 U.S.C.A. 1396p (d)(4)(B) to qualify a Medicaid applicant whose income was over the Oklahoma Income Cap;
The first Fair Hearing Appeal under 42 U.S.C.A.1396p (d) to exempt the beneficiary’s Social Security and Disability payment from nursing home expenses.
Lee is a member of the Special Needs Alliance, a national non-profit organization of attorneys focusing on the legal and practical aspects of Special Needs Trusts for individuals with disabilities. In order to keep the attorneys informed on the constantly changing laws, regulations, cases, and interpretations relating to Special Needs Trusts, Medicaid, SSI (Supplemental Security Income) and SSDI (Social Security Disability Income), the organization holds two national educational meetings each year, as well as conference calls throughout the year and regular e-mail communication. Attorney membership is by invitation only. Lee Holmes is the only attorney member admitted from the State of Oklahoma.
Since 1967, Lee has been a member of an Attorney-CPA Tax Discussion Group that meets weekly. He is a member of the Oklahoma City Attorneys Tax Group, the Oklahoma City Estate Planning Council and several other professional organizations. Lee was Chairman (1998/1999) of the Estate Planning, Probate, and Trust Section of the Oklahoma Bar Association.
Lee has been active in civic affairs, serving as Oklahoma District Club President of the Exchange Club and has been honored as Exchangite of the year in his club and by the Oklahoma District. In 1988, 1989 and 1990, Lee served as President of the Exchange Club Child Abuse Prevention Center of Oklahoma, Inc. During his Presidency, the Center hired its first employees and implemented a successful child abuse prevention program which works directly with families at risk of abusing children.
Lee is also a founding member of the Oklahoma City Business Success Club, an organization that has been dedicated to the discussion and improvement of business practices, customer relations and overall business success in Oklahoma City for over 30 years. For more information about the goals and practices of the Oklahoma City Business Success Club, visit their website at www.okcbizclub.com.
Lee regularly attends the annual Stetson University Law School seminars relating to Special Needs Trusts for individuals with disabilities.