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5 Key Questions to Ask an Elder Law Attorney

By , 9:00 am on

Elder law attorneys focus on navigating all the complexities of elder law. These lawyers can assist both seniors and their family members with several legal issues such as creating wills, transferring guardianship, and accessing retirement funds. If you’re meeting with an elder law attorney, it’s a good idea to come prepared. Make sure to ask the following five important questions during your meeting. 

1. What Are Your Qualifications? 

Any lawyer can claim he or she specializes in elder law, so you need to exercise some caution when looking for an elder law attorney. Ask the lawyer if he or she has been certified through the National Elder Law Foundation or other reputable organizations. See if the lawyer has taken courses specifically for elder law, and look for references from other clients.

While elder law attorneys help seniors with several legal matters, they aren’t trained to offer assistance with daily activities. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable senior care. Palm Beach, FL, families trust in Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.  

2. Which Area of Elder Law Do You Focus On? 

Some practices focus on specific areas like elder abuse, estate planning, using Medicare, transferring power of attorney, protecting assets, or fighting age discrimination. Ask the lawyer about which areas he or she primarily specializes in so you can find someone who has plenty of experience in the relevant area. It may be helpful to discuss any cases the lawyer has worked on that are similar to your loved one’s particular case.

3. How Will You Manage My Loved One’s Needs? 

Ask about how the attorney’s practice normally handles clients. You may want to find out whether the attorney will be managing your loved one’s needs independently or with the help of paralegals or junior employees at the office. It’s also useful to know if the office can be with your family along every step of the way, from creating a long-term care plan to aiding in a court case about a contested will. 

Searching for the right elder law attorney can be a difficult task, especially when you’re caught up with your caregiving duties. If you are the primary caregiver for a senior loved one in Palm Beach, respite care is available when you need time away from your important caregiving duties. At Home Care Assistance, our respite caregivers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help your loved one manage everyday tasks in the comfort of home while you have the chance to take a much-needed break.

4. What Documents Do I Need? 

The advice provided by an elder law attorney can be invaluable. The lawyer should be able to guide you through the process of preparing various documents to make your loved one’s life easier. At the minimum, you need a power of attorney document, a health care proxy document, and a will. It can also be helpful to draw up trusts, do-not-resuscitate orders, and other important documents.

5. How Do I Budget for My Loved One’s Expenses? 

A good elder law attorney helps seniors save money in the long run. The right attorney can help your loved one apply for Medicaid and other government programs and prepare taxes, life insurance, and other financial details. A lawyer can also prove useful for helping your loved one distribute his or her assets and draw up a plan for long-term care.

Elder law attorneys are not the only individuals who help seniors enjoy a high quality of life. To successfully age in place, some aging adults require professional in-home care. In Palm Beach, home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy. Call one of our professional Care Managers at 561.429.8292 to schedule a free in-home consultation.