Wanted: Elder Law Attorney

Wanted: Elder Law Attorney

Elder law attorneys can play an important role in the lives of seniors and their families.  They can be indispensable when issues related to powers of attorney, Medicaid spend-down, trusts, and estate planning need to be addressed.  As with any profession, there are good ones and bad ones.  Because they can be tasked with items that can have a lasting impact on the quality of the life of the senior, it’s important to find an expert elder lawyer that you can trust.

Here are a few tips to assist you:

  • The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys is a professional organization.  This can be a wonderful resource for locating an elder law attorney in your area.
  • Get a referral from a friend, family member, or neighbor whose legal needs are similar to yours.  The chances are good that if they had a good experience you will also.
  • A good referral can also come from a trusted accountant, bank employee, or financial advisor.
  • Check their credentials with your State Bar Association.  By doing this you can confirm that he or she is licensed in your state.  This is also where you would check for any disciplinary actions that may have occurred.
  • Meet for an initial consultation. Many lawyers will have a preliminary meeting to discuss your needs.  By doing this they can evaluate your situation and provide an estimate of costs.
  • Take a close look at their customer service.  Are calls returned promptly?  Does the phone ring off the hook or is it answered on the first or second ring?  Do they take the time to completely explain each aspect of your case as well as your options?

Don’t be shy about asking questions.  If you don’t understand the answer, ask again.  There can be a lot at stake and getting bad legal advice can be worse than not getting any advice at all.

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