We are often asked about the difference between estate planning and elder law. While there are important distinctions between them, they are more universal than they may seem at first glance.MORE
What is Elder Law?
An Elder Law Attorney helps clients with their estate and long-term care planning, Medicaid, Special Needs Trusts and Veterans Benefits.
When trying to find an Elder Law Attorney, it is important to understand how Elder Law differs from traditional estate planning (death planning). On the one hand, a traditional estate plan is typically designed to do three things: 1) Minimize estate taxes, 2) Avoid probate court and 3) Distribute assets from the deceased person to his or her heirs. On the other hand, an Elder Law Attorney works with clients and families to guide them through the minefield of Public Benefits, Veteran’s Benefits, Medicare, Social Security, Special Needs Trusts, Powers of Attorney and Medicaid. The Elder Law Attorney’s job is to increase the quality of life of their clients, not just figure out who-gets-what after they pass away.
A good Elder Law Attorney will have learned the state, federal and even the county rules governing estate planning, Medicaid, and Veterans Benefits. He or she will then apply the specific facts of their clients to the Medicaid rules and figure out what options best fit their situation.
What are the Issues Addressed by Estate Planning and Elder Law Attorneys?
- Elder Law
- Estate Planning (Wills, Trusts)
- POA’s (Financial & Health Care)
- How to pay for care
- LTC Insurance
- Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefits
- Private Pay
Who are the clients of Estate Planning and Elder Law Attorneys?
In addition to seniors, Elder Law Attorneys deal with the entire life spectrum. From people with disabilities to those facing the end of life, Elder Law attorneys promote planning now and for the future.