Experienced Elder Law Attorneys and Services

Elder law attorneys are advocates that specialize in representing seniors and their loved ones. Generally, there is a broad variety of legal issues involving seniors including health insurance, guardianship, long-term care arrangements, retirement, among others. Hiring the services of a nursing home attorney can make a big difference in dealing with critical matters like financial planning and day-to-day challenges that impact the real care of seniors.

Elder law attorneys are very qualified to deal with a wide range of situations. If you are facing a problem that requires specialized help, make sure to seek the services of this type of lawyer. Learn more about how to find and hire elder law attorneys and what to expect when you do.

Why Do You Need an Elder Law Attorney?

Not many people know about the existence of elder law lawyers, but they are very important when dealing with problems that affect the elderly. An elder law attorney can assist in all of the following:

  • Draft wills and estate plans.

  • Establish a long-term power of attorney.

  • Provide planning support, including long-term care options and Medicare.

  • Help in financial preparation, housing and planning options, and tax matters.

  • Explain the necessity of a nursing home.

Importance of Elder Law Attorneys

When it comes to dealing with problems faced by senior citizens, elder law attorneys may be necessary in any of the following situations:

  1. Estate Planning: Whether you have a modest bank account or a long list of properties, it can be difficult to plan your estate. Nevertheless, as you age, it is crucial to put your affairs in order. That is why you need an estate planning expert. There is more about an estate plan than writing a simple will. In fact, when implementing your estate plan, a will is just the very first step. When you become ill, other steps must be taken like creating trusts for your life insurance plans and general control of your assets over your lifetime, as well as settling your assets at the time of your death.

  2. Social Security: When you are 61 and nine months old, you qualify and can apply for payments from Social Security. However, the full retirement age for Social Security is 67. Once you reach the full retirement age, an elder law lawyer will help ensure that you have the right amount of benefits depending on your situation.

  3. Medicare: The federal health insurance program for Americans who are 65 and older is Medicare. Even though this program offers great advantages, it is difficult and frustrating to use, especially when you are registering for the first time. There are many different stages (up to five) when it comes to applying for Medicare. An elderly law attorney can be useful when deciding how Medicare can help pay your hospital bills.

  4. Medicaid: You need to send plenty of paperwork to the state where you will be residing in order to be able to access Medicaid for nursing home expenses. There is plenty of Medicaid procedures to carry out before you can legally apply for Medicaid. However, it is important to get Medicaid if you plan on entering a nursing home at exceptionally low costs. An elderly law attorney will help you register and prepare for Medicaid coverage if you qualify.

  5. Long-Term Care: If you reach a stage of your life when you need to seek long-term care, you need to hire the services of an elderly law attorney to ease through this process. Depending on your age, and other preexisting conditions, you can get help with your insurance premiums.

  6. Elder Abuse: This type of abuse involves physical, mental, sexual or financial maltreatment. If you suffer neglect or abandonment, you can also file for elder abuse. Elder law lawyers may assist in approaching the relevant authority and getting compensation for any damages.

How Much Does it Cost to Hire an Elder Law Attorney?

In general, elder law lawyers bill by the hour depending on your situation. In certain cases, lawyers charge a prearranged flat rate fee conditional on the type of service that your case requires. In some cases, you can hire the services of a pro-bono lawyer, which means that his/her services will be free of costs. 

Questions That You Must Ask Your Elder Law Attorney

Before hiring any elder law attorney, you need to ask the following questions:

  1. How long will it take to resolve my case? This way you have an idea of how much money it will cost you in a worst case scenario.

  2. Which are the advantages and disadvantages of each possibility or outcome for my case? This is important to determine how your lawyer will approach your case, and what will be required of you.

  3. How many attorneys will be working on my case? This helps you determine how difficult your case is and how many lawyers you will be paying.

  4. What is your level of expertise? You always want to hire an attorney that has dealt with similar cases in the past.

  5. How well do you cope in a trial? How many cases you have led to trial? There is no guarantee that your case will be settled out of court. That is why you need an attorney that has trial experience.

  6. Are you certified? Which bar and other organizations are you member of? Certified lawyers are reliable and they answer to higher authorities. Plus, you can check other customer reviews.