With an ever-increasing aging population, and with my own mother and mother-in-law requiring long-term care, I have become passionate about elder law. Not only can I help legally, but I can offer personal advice and empathy, having gone through this difficult process firsthand.
Elder law encompasses many different areas. The first that might come to mind is the traditional estate planning, where many older people/couples want to get their affairs in order and provide for their loved ones once they’re gone. Most people also want to create a living will and medical power of attorney, so that they have a say in what happens to them when they are unable to make their own decisions. These are all important documents that everyone, regardless of their age, should have in place.
Elder law also includes Medicaid planning. Many people’s assets will not be enough to provide for them through end of life should major medical complications arise. Medicaid was created to help alleviate these situations, but it can take planning. Ideally, that planning should take place at least five years before the need arises. However, this does not always happen, and there are still avenues available if you are within the five-year window. Too many people believe that they cannot qualify for Medicaid, but meeting with an elder law attorney might surprise you to find out differently.
Veteran’s assistance (VA) can become an important part of elder law planning if you are eligible. For many who were previously in the military, these benefits can be a tremendous help in making ends meet. A VA qualified elder law attorney can help determine your eligibility and help you through the application process.
Trusts can also be an integral part of elder law. These vehicles can provide asset protection in traditional estate planning and in Medicaid and VA planning. There are a variety of trust options available, and an elder law attorney can help you determine which one(s) will fit your unique needs.
Unfortunately, sometimes being an elder law attorney also includes dealing with elder abuse. Too many of our elderly are mistreated or taken advantage of by not only strangers, but sadly, their own family members. If you suspect elder abuse, meeting with an elder law attorney can help clarify the situation and determine what options are available in correcting the situation.
Finally, Family Law Group is a member of the national ELDERCOUNSEL® and the National Academy of Elder Law Attorney’s, Inc (NAELA). This means we have resources for elder law that most attorneys don’t have, and we keep updated on the latest in elder law news. We are also a member of the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating.
If you have elder law needs or just want more information for yourself or a loved one, please give us a call. We would love to help!