7 Reasons You Might Need Elder Law Services

Aug 22, 2023
Elder Care Law
7 Reasons You Might Need Elder Law Services | AmeriEstate Legal Plan

Aging has benefits: the wisdom of a long life, the time to do the things you love, and the joys of being a grandparent. However, it also comes with its fair share of unique challenges, such as increasing health issues and concerns over the legacy you will leave behind. As you — or a loved one — move through the latter years of your life, you face unique challenges and heightened concerns about the future.

When you need assistance, it helps to know that those providing it understand the physical, emotional, and financial needs of the elderly population. AmeriEstate’s attorneys offer elder law services to ensure you have support from caring and knowledgeable professionals. Here are seven reasons you might need the assistance we offer seniors.

1. You Need Elder Law Services for Healthcare Support

As you age, the risk of serious illness or accidents increases. There is an average of 540 adults over the age of 70 that sustain injuries in car accidents daily as well as 25% over the age of 65 sustaining injuries from falling. At the same time, the body’s bones and tissues aren’t as strong as they once were, leading to a longer healing and recovery journey.

Similarly, over 80% of elder adults deal with at least one chronic illness. An estimated 6.7 million seniors in the U.S. have Alzheimer’s dementia. Though medicine continues to advance in treatment options for a wide range of chronic health conditions, if you or someone you love contracts an illness, it might require extended care.

Long-term care and skilled nursing facilities provide invaluable but costly services. One of the benefits of AmeriEstate’s elder law legal services is that we can help you prepare for or obtain the care you need. Our knowledgeable professionals work with you to find long-term care insurance that meets your needs. They will also help you understand Medicaid requirements and navigate the application process.

2. You Have Dependent Adult Children

Establishing care for dependent adult children is a priority and primary concern for seniors. If you have a child who will need ongoing assistance after you pass, we’re here to help you arrange for your child’s financial and physical care when you can no longer provide it.

Legally protecting your child’s rights and security is essential to their long-term well-being. We offer counsel and assistance for:

  • Government benefits (including ensuring your child receives your Social Security benefits)
  • Guardianship
  • Will
  • Trust

We understand the unique circumstances surrounding caring for a vulnerable loved one after you pass, and we know what’s needed to ensure your wishes for their care are met.

3. You Are a Veteran

If you served in any military branch, you might be entitled to enhanced veteran’s benefits. Your spouse may also receive a cash benefit after you pass. Eligible vets can receive the Aid and Attendance veteran’s pension supplement, which is a monthly, tax-free cash payment. The government determines eligibility based on:

  • Service and discharge
  • Medical need
  • Income level and assets

Unfortunately, obtaining this veteran’s benefit isn’t always a simple process. Clients often come to us after discovering they don’t qualify due to the government’s income and asset parameters. Our elder law services attorneys understand the intricacies of the V.A.’s requirements and implement proven strategies to help you or your spouse qualify.

4. You Don’t Want Your Estate To Land in Probate

Though every adult should have an estate plan, the matter becomes more prescient as you move through your senior years. Without the proper legal protections in place, what happens to your estate is in the court’s hands. A will is not sufficient to ensure your wishes are adhered to.

Estate planning can safeguard your assets and reduce the stress for your heirs. Probate court is an expensive and lengthy process. It’s also a public one, meaning that your affairs are visible to anyone who cares to see them, and anyone can make a claim on your estate. The hearing process can last years and there is no guarantee that the court will decide in your loved ones’ favor.

The right measures can also save your beneficiaries from paying hefty estate taxes. While a will is valuable for establishing your wishes and guardianship for minors, only trusts provide legal protection for your assets. Whatever your estate size — even if your primary asset is your house — you might benefit from AmeriEstate’s elder care legal services.

5. You Want a Say in Your End-of-Life Decisions

Thinking about the end of your life might be disconcerting, but it’s necessary to ensure your wishes are known and adhered to. It also protects your loved ones from making tough choices during stressful and emotional times. A living trust establishes your wishes and guidelines for handling finances and healthcare, including do-not-resuscitate orders.

6. You Need To Appoint Powers of Attorney

In addition to making your end-of-life decisions known and implementing legally binding protections, you might need elder law services to help you set up powers of attorney. A healthcare power of attorney gives someone you trust the ability to make healthcare decisions for you in case you become incapacitated. A financial power of attorney does the same for financial decisions and tasks.

These individuals ensure your health and financial needs are handled according to your directives. Choosing someone for each role who understands your desires and can handle the responsibility is essential. While we can’t decide who is up to the task, we can help you understand their roles and establish the documentation needed to appoint powers of attorney.

7. You Need To Obtain Elder Abuse Protection

An estimated 10% of U.S. adults aged 65 and older are victims of elder abuse each year. Elder abuse refers to intentionally harmful actions toward seniors and includes:

  • Psychological abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Neglect
  • Financial exploitation and fraud

The abuser may be a caregiver, family member, friend or stranger. If you or someone you love has experienced elder abuse, you are not alone. AmeriEstate will help you obtain the information, resources and services you need to hold perpetrators accountable and protect you, your rights and your property.