Assisting Seniors Throughout Missouri

As we age, a variety of legal issues come into play that require the foresight and care of an experienced elder lawyer. Issues such as planning for long-term care, choosing retirement plans, and planning for the transfer and settling of your estate are just some of the considerations that must be made as we enter retirement age. For some senior citizens, there are government benefits available that would assuage the financial burden of ensuring these essential care components are provided for in our later years. Accessing these benefits requires meeting a series of qualifications that are best addressed by an experienced Springfield elder lawyer.

Whether you’re a senior citizen with questions about how to proceed through the next phase of your life, or a loved one making arrangements for an elder parent or relative, a Springfield elder lawyer at Parks & Jones can help. Our counsel aims to guide you through these issues with sensitivity and care they deserve. We focus on helping you and your family navigate elder law issues, such as dealing with government agencies, social programs, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities. Our attorneys can help answer your questions related to Medicare, long-term care and planning, probate and more. 

Clarify Your Goals in Hiring an Elder Lawyer

When meeting with an elder attorney, you should first clarify the areas where you may need help. Do you wish to plan for your potential disability? Are you seeking to ensure your long-term care is handled? Or are you seeking help with estate planning to ensure your family and loved ones are provided for after your death?

The following are some potential goals within each of these areas of elder law.

  • Disability and Incapacity Planning: One major area where elder lawyers can be of assistance is planning for your potential disability or incapacity. If you become incapable of making your own decisions due to an accident, illness or dementia, you should decide whom you would want making decisions on your behalf.  The right legal documents, such as a durable power of attorney, can ensure the needs of you and your family are met during times of disability or incapacity.
  • Long-term Care Planning: Most people over the age of 65 will need long-term care at some point. Accordingly, you should have plans in place to provide for this costly care, including insurance options and asset protection.
  •  Estate Planning: To ensure your assets are protected and passed on to the next generation, be sure to select and consider the beneficiaries you want, in addition to making an inventory of all your assets.

Documents and Information to Bring to Your Consultation

When you consult with an elder law attorney, it is best to come prepared. Most people facing an elder law issue will need to make some important decisions that will greatly affect their lives and their families. Whether this means planning for their own old age, or ensuring their assets are taken care of after they pass away, the stakes are high.  This means the person seeking legal help should have certain documents and information.  In addition, they should consider their goals in hiring an elder attorney.

Some basic documents and information to bring to your consultation include the following:

  • General information (name, DOB, etc.) about you and your beneficiaries, power of attorney holders, etc.
  • Any existing legal or planning documents, such as wills, trusts, insurance policies, etc.
  • Basic information about retirement accounts, investment accounts, properties, or businesses.
  • A list of questions for the attorney.

Preparing to Meet Your Lawyer at Parks & Jones

A Parks & Jones Springfield elder lawyer will help you address concerns and streamline solutions for your future needs. In order to ensure that we come up with a comprehensive plan that considers all of the benefits available to you, it’s best to come to the meeting with a sense of the special benefits already available to you – such as veteran or Medicare benefits, information on any current or supplemental insurance policies, social security and retirement benefits and plans, and ideas about how and where you would like to live, and who might care for you in illness. We recommend that family members and loved ones take part in this discussion so everyone feels like they are engaged with the solution. Contact us to schedule your free consultation today.