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Most people want to avoid lawyers wherever possible. However, elder law attorneys are good people to know when you or a loved one experiences aging or a disability. These professionals can help their clients navigate the complex legalese, hoops, and hurdles surrounding long-term care, senior finances, and end-of-life planning, all of which are unavoidable as we age.
Elder law is a broad term that encompasses many legal concerns related to aging, disabilities, and long-term care. Issues that may fall under elder law include:
Elder law attorneys offer legal services related to long-term care planning. That means they can perform duties such as:
Not all lawyers are created equal; it can be tricky to find the right attorney. Knowing what to look for and where to look for one can simplify the process.
The exact qualifications for being called an elder law attorney vary from state to state.
Most states, however, recognize those who have received certification as an elder law attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation (NELF). Lawyers have to apply for this specific certification (Certified Elder Law Attorney, or CELA), which is recognized by the American Bar Association.
The following are the basic criteria for NELF elder law certification:
Not every elder law attorney is a CELA, which is a specific, prestigious designation.
Easy ways to find an elder law attorney include:
Missourians can seek legal help from the following resources:
From crafting living wills to navigating Medicaid, elder law attorneys are the lawyers you want to meet when you have questions or concerns regarding senior or disability issues.