Seniors have a lot of different concerns as they enter their retirement years like their health, their long-term care, and writing their will and planning end-of-life desires. They might also have to spend a good deal of time dealing with insurance companies, housing providers, healthcare professionals, and other various government agencies and that can be stressful and draining. If this sounds like your retirement so far, you might want to consider using an elder law attorney. These lawyers will take care of all the stressful parts of being a senior all while keeping your best interests in mind.
You wouldn’t ask an electrician to fix your plumbing because that’s not their area of expertise and the same goes for lawyers. Elder law can be very complicated and in order to make sure you are making the right choices you want to get an attorney who specializes in this type of law. An elder law attorney will know that most aspects of elder law are connected, like Medicaid and your personal assets. If your assets change so do your Medicaid benefits and then the level of your health care could also change, so avoid complicated headaches by choosing an attorney that specializes in elder law.
Another reason you might want an elder law attorney is that they are often very aware of the emotional needs of their clients and can help them find the right resources in the community to offer extra support for seniors and their families.
While your immediate answer might be seniors exclusively, there are a few others who could benefit from an elder law attorney. Seniors, of course, should consider an attorney they are writing or editing a will or need to start planning their estate. But family members of seniors might also need the services of an attorney when it comes to questions of conservatorship, legal guardianship, and if their loved ones are no longer capable of handling their affairs. No matter who you are, if you suspect or are a victim of senior abuse, you should contact an elder law attorney to take the proper steps to handle the issue.
If you are about to plan your estate, now is the time to think about an elder law attorney. As mentioned before, elder law is a complicated process and so is estate planning. Having an attorney that can easily handle asset ownership, federal benefits, and advance healthcare directives will be a big benefit. It’s also a good way to simply secure the future of you and your family.
Other issues or times that might require the expertise of an elder law attorney are:
Age discrimination at work
Insurance claims and appeals
Medicaid or VA benefits
Because elder law is complex not every attorney will specialize in all areas so find one that meets your specific needs.
Talk to friends and family to find out if they have any recommendations and if you know a lawyer you could possibly get a referral for an attorney that practices elder law. You can also search online sites like Super Lawyers for top attorneys in your city or places like the National Elder Law Foundation and the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys for state-based attorneys.
The District of Columbia Bar is a good place to go for more information and resources on hiring a lawyer. They can help you determine if you need a lawyer and you can use their lawyer referral service. There is also a good deal of information about what to do if you can’t afford legal services but still need help.
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