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What is Elder Law?
Elder law is the area of law, statutes, regulations and decisions, which impact on the lives of older Americans and their families. It encompasses such areas as long-term care and nursing home care; Medicaid and asset protection planning; Medicare, managed care, and payment for health care; Social Security and retirement income planning; disability planning; housing options, such as assisted-living and residential homes for the aged; financial and health care decision-making through the use of durable powers of attorney; end-of-life decision-making through the use of living wills and advance directives; probate and estates; revocable living trusts and wills; and so forth.
Elder Law is one of the fastest growing areas of law. With 80 million baby boomers moving into their “golden years,” and one person attaining age 50 every seven seconds, there is a great demand for information. In addition, many of the entitlements, such as Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and “health care reform,” are being driven at the federal level. It takes a elder law attorney committed to practice primarily in this area of law to stay on top of the most current changes in legislation.
Should I Hire an Elder Law Attorney?
For issues like elder abuse, fraud recovery and various forms of neglect, you’ll need a qualified Elder law attorney. However, there are a variety of other reasons in which consulting with a Lead Counsel Elder Law Attorney could save you and your loved ones a lot of money, grief and legal hassles, including:
- Disability planning, including use of durable powers of attorney, living trusts, living wills, advanced directives and other means of delegating management and decision-making to another in case of incompetency or incapacity Conservatorship and Guardianship
- Coordinating private and public resources (including income assistance benefits) to finance the cost of care and to permit access to the appropriate type of medical and personal care including home health care, nursing home care, hospice and respite care
- Conservatorships and Guardianships
- Estate planning, including planning for the management of one’s estate during life and its disposition on death through the use of trusts, wills and other planning documents
- Preservation/transfer of assets seeking to avoid spousal impoverishment when one spouse enters a nursing home
- Medicaid planning
- Medicare claims and appeals
- Social security disability claims and appeals
- Supplemental and long term health insurance issues
- Probate issues
- Administration and management of trusts and estate
- Long-term care placements in nursing home and life care communities
- Nursing home issues including questions of patients’ rights and nursing home quality
- Housing issues, including discrimination and home equity conversions
- Age discrimination and employment
- Retirement, including public and private retirement benefits, survivor benefits and pension benefits
- Health law matters
- Mental Health law matters