According to the United States Census Bureau, more than 51 million Americans are currently aged 65 or older, a number that is steadily increasing. At the same time, medical and technological advancements are allowing seniors to live longer and better lives than ever before. The expanding needs of the aging population are contributing to an increase in the complexity and availability of federal government senior assistance programs. Each senior has a unique set of circumstances to navigate when determining the best way to provide for the senior’s long-term care. One of the best ways to a plan is to consult an Elder Law attorney about the best options.
How can an Elder Law attorney assist you?
Elder Law attorneys provide planning and coordination for the financial, legal and health care decisions that seniors face. Locating and paying for long-term care is something that many seniors and their family members don’t plan for. Not doing so may result in running out of money or not being able to secure much-needed care. If at all possible, seniors and their families should contact an Elder Law attorney well before there is an immediate need for long-term care. Being proactive and planning ahead can actually preserve and save assets for the next generation, while still finding the best way to pay for the senior’s long-term care.
Often, seniors face the possibility of dementia or other medical issues as they age.
If a senior reaches a point where he or she is not able to make medical or financial decisions for himself or herself, then it’s possible that a court proceeding known as a “guardianship” may be needed. Guardianships are public record, meaning anyone can access the records, they cost additional money, and they take unnecessary time. Elder Law attorneys help seniors and other individuals protect themselves from guardianship proceedings by creating medical powers of attorney, advanced health care directives (also known as “living wills”), and financial powers of attorney which ensure that someone is able to make decisions for the senior if he or she is unable to do so. Having these documents in place ensures privacy, and may also enable a trusted family member or loved one to develop and implement a plan for the senior’s long-term care. This includes planning to qualify the senior for Medicaid or Veterans’ benefits while also preserving most or all of the senior’s assets.
Elder Law is a very focused area of the law, and not all attorneys have the knowledge or experience to accomplish a senior’s long-term care planning goals. Connecting to an Elder Law attorney with the necessary qualifications is essential. At Wilson+Miller PLLC, we are Elder Law attorneys with the knowledge and experience you need, and we would appreciate the opportunity to help in any way we can. Please give us a call to set up a consultation or request additional information. 501.221.7776.