Experienced, Compassionate Elder Law Representation
Elder law planning focuses on the unique issues that seniors face. Whether you are planning for yourself, or helping a parent, spouse, or other loved one, we are available to guide you through your options and implement a plan. We assist clients in a range of elder law issues, such as:
- Updating your estate plan. You may already have a Last Will and Testament, but circumstances may have changed since you prepared that Will, such as your children becoming adults, a divorce, the death of a spouse or remarriage, or you or your spouse may have received a serious medical diagnosis. We will discuss the impact of these changes on your planning as well as consider what other changes to federal and state law and tax exemptions may affect your decisions.
- Planning for the time you may need assistance. It is vital to have a trusted individual in place to help with financial decisions in case you are unable to make these decisions yourself at some time in the future. You may appoint an individual through a financial power of attorney to act on your behalf should you lose capacity for these decisions. It is difficult to think of a time when you may have to give up control of your finances to another person. However, planning ahead and having a financial power of attorney gives you control as you select and instruct those who will serve in this role. If you lose capacity in the future without a financial power of attorney in place, a family member or friend may have to petition the court to become your guardian in order to ensure that your expenses get paid and your property is accounted for. The guardianship process is costly, involves a Court hearing, takes time and is difficult to overturn or even go through. A financial power of attorney can be a far better option.
- Preparing for medical decisions at the end of life. Through an advance medical directive you appoint the people you want to make medical decisions on your behalf when you are no longer able to make these decisions for yourself. You may also instruct your agent and/or your physicians on the types of medical care you do and don’t want, in case you are no longer able to convey your wishes. Making medical decisions for someone else is a serious responsibility and can be very emotional. One of the best things you can do for your agent is to ensure that your wishes are clear so that they can act confidently when the time comes. We always recommend taking the time to discuss your wishes with your agents and loved ones, so that your end of life choices are understood and followed.
- Understanding long-term care planning and health insurance options. Medical Assistance (Medicaid). Medicare Parts A, B, C, D. Medigap. QMB/SLMB. Extra Help. CCRC. We can help make sense of these variety of options and acronyms so that you understand what options you have for long-term care and health insurance, as you plan for a secure future.
- Protecting your assets. You worked hard and saved in order to take care of yourself and your loved ones, and to leave something behind for your family or charitable organizations when you die. In-home care, assisted living, nursing homes and medical care are expensive and can quickly consume your life savings. We are available to explain your options and tools to preserve your assets for your future needs as well as to provide for your loved ones.
- It’s never too late. No matter where you are in the elder law process, it is never too late to consult with an attorney to determine if there are any options available to protect the assets of your loved one and to ensure they are cared for with dignity and respect. Even if your family member is already in a nursing home or has been paying privately for care, a discussion about the various programs and options available can be helpful to determine possible next steps.
- We connect you with other resources. A big part of our role in the elder law planning process is connecting you and your family members with other professionals who can help ease the difficulties associated with aging. From home health care companies, aging-in-place consultants, appraisers, medical assessors, personal property re-sale, accountants, financial planners and realtors, we work to ensure you have access to the resources you need to make the elder law process as painless as possible.
Our attorneys are here to help plan for a secure future as you or your loved ages. Talk with an attorney from our firm in a free 15-minute phone call. Fill out our online contact form or call us at 410-891-6685.