For over fifty years, May has been recognized as a month designated to honor more than just the seniors in high school or college, but also our senior citizens. First declared as Senior Citizens Month by President Kennedy in 1963 (later changed to Older Americans Month by President Carter), the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys designated May as Elder Law Month. Specifically, the designation is a way to acknowledge the profession that supports the senior community with all of their planning needs.
Elder Law and Special Needs Law are concentrated areas of the law that involve representing, counseling, and assisting seniors and persons with disabilities—and their families—in connection with a variety of legal issues. The Elder Law and Special Needs Law attorney handles estate planning and counsels clients about planning for incapacity with health care decision-making documents.
Looking at narrower areas in this concentration, though, not all Elder Law attorneys handle all of the areas under the elder law umbrella. Among these areas, the Elder and Special Needs Law attorney might assist clients in planning for possible long-term care needs, including at-home care, assisted living, or nursing home care. Also, the Elder Law attorney might help in locating the appropriate type of care. Coordinating public and private resources to finance the cost of care and working to ensure the client’s right to quality care might also part of the Elder and Special Needs Law practice. Other niche areas include elder abuse, social security appeals, and guardianship.
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