Elder law refers to the legal services specific to senior citizens. Here are some important questions you should ask when seeking elder law legal advice.
1. Why Do I Need an Elder Law Attorney?
An elder law attorney can provide you with the correct information to navigate complex legal issues such as taxes, social security, Medicare, Medicaid, Property and Trust laws, and more.
2. Are You Certified?
Elder law attorneys are certified through the National Elder Law Foundation (NELF). It is important to make sure your attorney has this certification to be sure they are an expert in elder law.
3. What Is Your Specialty?
Most attorneys have a specialty area. Your attorney may be an estate planning lawyer, or may have specialty in abuse, age discrimination, disability, asset protection, medical or mental health, retirement, or other areas where they excel above others.
4. What Experience Do You Have?
You want to be sure your attorney has a track record of handling the type of case you face. Ask them how long they’ve been in the field and what kinds of cases they’ve handled.
5. Are You Up-to-Date on Massachusetts Law?
Every attorney in the state needs to be current on the latest changes in Massachusetts’ laws, which constantly change and shift.
6. What Professional Associations Do You Have?
Many attorneys will hold memberships in professional associations. These should help your lawyer’s area of expertise. One such membership is NAELA, or the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.
7. Are You Involved with Elder Law Concerns?
Beyond simply dealing with legal cases, a good attorney is active in elder law advocacy and education. Such involvement shows passion and dedication as well as knowledge.
8. Are You a Super Lawyer?
“Super Lawyer” is a title granted by your attorney’s peers on a state-by-state basis every year. Very few lawyers gain this honor, and those that do are the best of the best.
9. Are You a Medicaid and Medicare Expert?
The most common elder law issues involve these programs, and your lawyer should always be well-versed in their inner workings.
10. What Resources Are Available?
Your attorney should be able to provide you with a number of strong elder law resources such as Medicare, Medicaid, estate and trust law, ailments like Alzheimer’s and Crohn’s and more, so you can educate yourself.
For more information or advice regarding elder care law, give us a call today.