When planning for retirement, it’s fun to think about what you will do with all your free time, picking up a new hobby, spending time exploring new passions, and embracing this new chapter of your life. The best way to reach this retirement is to ensure that all your plans and wishes are legally established and binding.
Meeting with an elder law attorney can get you started on this important process. To make the most of your initial meeting, you can prepare questions to ask an elder law attorney to get a strong start in planning your future.
What Is an Elder Law Attorney and What Services Do They Provide?
According to the Department of Homeland Security, elder law focuses on protecting seniors and people with disabilities in the following areas:
When you have an elder law attorney at your side, they can walk you through the process of creating important legal documents, like a will and testament, to make your wishes known.
They can help you with long-term care planning, including asset protection, so you can retire without worry. It’s important to think about what kind of care you want in the future so your attorney can implement a plan that will allow you to afford the retirement you want.
Your attorney will examine your financial holdings, potential benefits like Medicare/Medicaid or veteran’s benefits, and other sources of income that can fund your retirement and health care, whether that’s opting for home care or moving to a senior living community.
An elder law lawyer will also help you name a power of attorney, who will act as a decision-maker in important areas of your life should you become incapacitated or unable to make these decisions on your own.
You can turn to a skilled elder law attorney to aid with estate planning if you wish to pass on property to your family members in a way that doesn’t result in legal issues or paying the highest cost in taxes.
How Do You Find Experienced Elder Law Attorneys?
When you’re starting your search for a reputable attorney, you can start with the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA). This organization supports elder law attorneys so they can best serve their clients.
Their find a lawyer tool can help you find law firms specializing in elder law or lawyers practicing elder law near you.
Questions to Ask an Elder Law Attorney
When you first meet with your elder law attorney, you’re going to have a conversation about your wishes and future goals. Here are nine important questions to ask your elder law attorney to make sure you cover as much ground as possible:
- What essential documents do I need to have?
- Are you a certified specialist with experience in elder law?
- How does dementia factor into decision-making and with Powers of Attorney?
- How do I avoid estate taxes and probate?
- What steps do I take to protect my assets?
- Can you explain what a Lady Bird deed is and if I would benefit from one?
- How do I plan and create a trust for a dependent or disabled child?
- Are the successors on my documents “laddered” or do they use co-agents? Which is better suited for my needs?
- What are your rates?
After you’ve discussed these questions, you’ll have a better understanding of your options when it comes to planning your future. Your lawyer will direct you on what to do next, and you can have peace of mind that you’re taking all the necessary steps to prepare for retirement.
Discover Refined Senior Living at StoneRidge
Retirement is a monumental occasion for older adults. When planning out your retirement, you’ll want to think about future health care and the benefits of aging in place.
A Life Plan senior living community like StoneRidge can be the perfect solution for your retirement worries. StoneRidge offers multiple levels of care so if your health needs change, your care solutions are in your community.
StoneRidge is located in picturesque Mystic, Connecticut. Our senior living community is close-knit, and welcoming, and focuses on living and aging well. Residents can enjoy a number of amenities and services that promote an engaged and fulfilling lifestyle.
With a number of special interest clubs and activities, it’s easy to join the community and fit right in while doing the things you love.
Contact us at 860-333-8995 to learn more about life at StoneRidge.