Elder Law Lawyer

elder law

Elder law is a field of law dealing with the unique legal issues that affect older adults. The broad definition of elder law is the specialized field of law that addresses the diverse legal needs of aging populations. It focuses on the legal issues affecting baby boomers and their elderly parents. Lawyers who are versed in these issues are often referred to as elder law attorneys.

Legal issues affecting seniors are governed by complex regulations and laws that vary by state. They’re also multifaceted, often requiring a unique understanding of the personal impacts of aging, which can make a person more physically, financially, and socially vulnerable. Elder law addresses the various life decisions and circumstances that arise during this time of life as well as how estate plans will be executed after your death. Elder law attorneys who focus their legal practice on these issues take a holistic approach when working with seniors and their family members, helping them navigate legal matters in conjunction with a network of professionals including health and social workers and psychologists.

Below are some common questions involved with elder law:

  • Have you updated your Will in the last 5 years?
  • Have you protected assets in case you need home care or nursing home care?
  • Do you have a Living Will, Health Care Proxy and Power of Attorney?
  • Have you taken steps to protect your home?
  • Are you willing to spend one-half or even all of your assets on the cost of your care?
Many people erroneously assume that elder law is only a concern for those with complex life situations, such as a disability or special needs, a second marriage, a high-value estate, or financially reckless adult children. Although the field is of particular importance to seniors in such circumstances, it’s vital for all seniors to familiarize themselves with elder law and enlist an attorney when needed in order to protect themselves and their assets from what may befall them in their golden years and beyond.
For example, let’s say that your health is waning or you expect it to as you approach your senior years. You can work with an elder law attorney who specializes in disability planning to complete an advance medical directive with a durable power of attorney for health care, a document that allows you to name a health care proxy to make medical decisions on your behalf when you can no longer do so. Doing so can avoid the need for health care providers to later administer treatments or make other decisions about your health that you may not agree with.

With the percentage of older Americans expected to outnumber their younger counterparts by the year 2050 it should be no surprise that services geared toward the elderly are becoming more frequent in the United States. The law has also taken note of the increasing elderly population by creating a specialty area, known as “elder law” that is aimed at addressing the unique legal issues faced by older individuals and those who care for them.

Long-term care is one of those issues for most elderly individuals. The average American can expect to live almost twice as long as his or her counterpart lived a century ago. A longer life expectancy, however, dramatically increases the likelihood that you will spend time in a long-term care facility at some point in your life. With an average cost of over $75,000 per year to stay in a long-term care facility can easily wipe out a lifetime’s worth of careful saving and prudent investing.

Will You Need Long-Term Care?

Though people prefer not to think about it, the odds are favorable that you will end up in a long-term care facility at some point. You have a one in five chance of needing long-term care prior to retirement age. For those who live to age 65, two in five will go on to need long-term care and by age 80 the likelihood of needing long-term care drops to three in four. The average stay in a long-term care facility is 2.5 years – a stay that is typically not covered by private health insurance or by the Medicare program. Proper planning is necessary in order to properly situate yourself, or a loved one.

Our law firm has thousands of testimonials. Below are just a few:

“Mr. Ronald S. Cook is the best lawyer that I have worked with. He is absolutely fantastic. The quality of the service is second to none. He is just at a different level. I am extremely satisfied from his services. Mr. Cook under-promises and over-delivers. I strongly recommend his advice and services.”

“Attorney Cook helped me update my Estate Plan when I relocated back to Long Island from Los Angeles. His assistance was critical since the laws in New York State are significantly different than those in California. He took the amount of time necessary for me to understand most of the intricacies of NY estate planning law, and as a retired engineer, I look to understand pretty much everything there is to know before I put my signature on paper. My customized plan was done well and in a very timely manner. I plan to use his services for any and all future needs where he is experienced. I would recommend anyone to speak to him about your estate planning needs.”

“Ronald Cook helped us with our Estate Planning needs. We had spoken to a few attorneys concerning our Estate needs over the years, but Mr. Cook will be the last. My wife and I were impressed by his willingness to take the time to explain in layman terms all our options. He customized our legal documents to reflect our specific needs and desires. His is not a cookie cutter approach and we highly recommend him.”

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