Planning. Protecting. Preserving. Elder Law is the field of practice in which we address your global issues of aging & disability by applying many areas of the law.
We help you identify the legal aspects of your problem and we provide solutions which are tailored for you. A team approach with our experienced elder care lawyers assures you that all necessary legal issues will be addressed.
While it may not be obvious, your situation may involve real estate law, wills & estate planning, trusts, tax, benefit programs like Social Security and Medicaid, contract review, employment arrangements, health care facility law, creation of arrangements for decision-making such as powers of attorney or guardianship, and possibly even matrimonial law or veterans’ benefits.
Every day, we work with families coping with Alzheimers, Parkinsons, and other disabling conditions.
To serve you with the highest quality of counsel possible, we have three elder law attorneys at our Firm who are actively involved in the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the State Elder Law organizations, and who are regularly called upon to educate other attorneys about this field. The partners hold advanced education or certification in elder law: Lauren S. Marinaro has a Masters of Law (LLM) in Elder Law; Linda Ershow-Levenberg has been certified in Elder Law by the National Elder Law Foundation (NELF), the ABA-approved organization recognized by the Supreme Court, since 1999 and is a member of the NELF Council of Advanced Practitioners, an invitation-only council.
Our elder law attorneys strive to preserve the health, safety and welfare of clients who are aged or disabled while at the same time helping you preserve your assets and provide the protection you want for your family members. By setting up an arrangement for assisted decision-making and for management of assets, we can help you achieve peace of mind and live the lifestyle you want.
Protection in Case of Incapacity: Our elder law attorneys will identify the need for Durable Powers of Attorney, Health Care Directives (“Living Wills”), Trusts or Guardianship when the elderly are unable to speak for themselves due to a medical crisis or if their quality of life or mental capacity is diminished. You may need to apply for government benefits such as Medicaid. Our elder law attorneys will help you with the application process and represent you in your appeal if your benefits are denied.
Obtaining and Paying for Long-Term Care: Medicaid, Long Term Care, and Nursing Home Planning: Until it is needed, most people are unaware that Medicare and most private health insurance policies do not cover what is needed in the way of “custodial” care such as nursing home care. Our elder law attorneys help you plan for the financing of assisted living, home care or nursing home care using Medicaid, Long Term Care insurance and other strategies in order to preserve your hard-earned assets.
Saving the Family Home. Even if long-term care is needed, there are often ways to save the house and we provide the advice and legal steps needed to do that.
Bill-paying and Fiduciary Services: As clients become aged it can become more challenging for them to manage their monthly household bills. Sometimes, they have become dependent on another relative who is really too busy to handle the bill-paying for two households. We provide an affordable system under a limited power of attorney in which we receive the person’s monthly bills and we handle the submission of the payments. We provide records whenever requested, and we send the client or their designated representative a quarterly report showing all financial transactions. The work is predominantly handled by our fiduciary Legal Assistant at the hourly rate of $195.00, with oversight by one of the partners at the firm. Bills are sent to the client monthly. We maintain the existing relationships that the client has with their tax preparer or financial advisor, and we coordinate the data collection for the tax preparer to ensure that all taxes are filed on time.
Life Cycle Estate Planning – Young Adults: On reaching age 18, basic estate planning with a Will and powers of attorney becomes vital for young adults, because their parents no longer have legal decision-making authority or access to their protected health information. Newlyweds and new parents of course should update their plans. We provide the straightforward friendly estate planning guidance that assists young people to tackle these important issues as they venture out into the world.
Life Cycle Estate Planning — Guiding clients through their 50’s and 60’s and preparing estate plans to protect the young adults in their households: For parents, the legal relationship changes when a child reached 18 and the young adults are encountering new challenges in the greater world outside the home. The plan that the parents put in place when the children were little needs a fresh look. When severe disability or substance abuse or mental illness are a factor, we guide our clients through the available legal remedies. We help our clients to understand the different kinds of Trusts that can provide the protection they want for their family and the best solution for the concerns that are unique to their family members. Once the estate plan is written, we coordinate the plan with all of the assets and beneficiary forms to ensure that the plan is comprehensive.
Preserving Benefits and Assets with Special Needs Trusts when Disability Occurs before age 65: When a client becomes severely disabled before age 65, they often need SSI, Medicaid, and DDD services. Special planning is needed to preserve the assets for their long-term future benefit. We write Special Needs Trusts for our clients, assist with transfers of assets into the trust, and provide detailed guidance to the trustees to establish and administer the Trust. We collaborate with personal injury attorneys to have settlements protected within a trust structure. We also collaborate with matrimonial attorneys to ensure that alimony or equitable distribution can appropriately protected for a party who is disabled.
your life's most valuable assets
Our certified Elder Law attorneys provide hands-on assistance throughout the planning process, as well as represent you if litigation is needed. We leave no stone unturned in getting you the protection you need.
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An Elder Law Attorney is certified through the National Elder Law Foundation, which is an accrediting organization approved by the American Bar Association and recognized by the New Jersey Supreme Court.