What is Elder Law Anyway?

Recently I have heard a lot about the specialty of Elder Law and I am not sure that I know what that really means. Does it refer to old lawyers? Or is it really referring to a specialty of law that works with families and individuals to help them navigate the maze of health care and planning, guardianship and estates. I am guessing that it refers to the latter. And the more that I think about it, the more I want to know - no - NEED to know more about it.

Let's face it, many of us barely have time to address our own concerns let alone help an aging relative or loved one navigate their "next phase" planning. Plus, frequently adding to the list of concerns can be the feeling that we are intruding in the private space of our loved one. It can be a very difficult topic to approach. Which is why understanding what programs, protections and legal requirements are available is a must! How can we convince someone to alter their way of doing things if we really don't fully understand what is at stake? Food for thought.....

For example, an Elder Law attorney can do the following:

- Discuss the importance of wills and estate planning, including planning for a minor or adult with special needs, probate proceedings and other matters.

- Create a durable power of attorney

- Provide help with health care planning, including long term care options and patient rights and Medicare.

- Financial representation: financial planning, housing opportunities and planning, income, estate and gift tax matters.

- Guardianship help with selecting and appointing legal guardianship

- Help with locating long-term care and managing assisted living costs

- Explain nursing home resident rights and help with filing nursing home claims

Draft a living will or other advance directive and long-term planning documents

A good Elder Law attorney can help you approach those difficult conversations with a reluctant parent or loved one who is convinced that planning is an admission of frailty and rock and roll lives forever!

Take the first step in reaching out to help your loved ones and register today for the September 26th Office Hours Kennett, "Boot Camp for Adult Children" 4 PM at The Creamery.

Knowledge is Power!

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