Elderly law is a rapidly growing area of law which focuses on helping clients with their legal, financial, and medical needs as they age. It is a holistic practice which develops multidisciplinary solutions to problems with the objective of enhancing the client’s quality of life.
As we age, health problems may begin to impact every facet of our lives. Most seniors not only face the challenge of trying to live independently, but they also face the problem of trying to deal with current and future health care issues and finding ways to pay for their medical care.
Documents like Wills, Trusts, powers of attorney, and health care surrogate designations are important tools in Elder Law because they provide a way for individuals to choose who will make financial decisions and medical decisions for them if they can’t make them for themselves and determine who will receive our assets at death. These documents are traditionally thought of as Estate Planning, but Elderly Law is so much more.
Elder Law Helps Provide Answers to Questions. Documents provide
little help in answering the questions that address the quality of our lives, such as:
• Will I run out of money?
• Who will pay for my home health aide and/or nursing home care?
• Will Medicaid take my house?
• What will Veterans Benefits pay for?
• Which one of my children will take care of me?
• What will happen to my spouse who has Alzheimer’s disease if I become incapacitated?
Answering these questions and developing a plan to address all of the issues we face as we age is what Elder Law is about. Elder Law is the interweaving of health and housing issues, caregiver concerns, finding a way to pay for long-term care, dealing with unresolved family issues, mediating among siblings about who will care for their parents, end of life decisions, and others. These are just a few of the subjects that are addressed in a comprehensive, caring way. Enhancing the parent or family member’s quality of life is paramount.
The scope of services provided by an elder law attorney varies with each client and is determined by the client’s overall circumstances. Due to the various and diverse issues involved, an elder law attorney must have knowledge and skill in the areas of Medicaid, Medicare, public benefits, real estate, family law, contract law, and financial planning. In addition to dealing with legal problems, Elder Law also involves resolving emotional issues of the client, the client’s family members, and the relationship between family members. Our firm is sensitive to these emotional issues and stands ready to help you.