Understanding Elder Law: How Attorneys Can Help

If you’re a senior citizen today, you know how complex things can get when you run into a legal problem. You may need help understanding the complexities of the social security system or you may have run into age discrimination because you’re over 65. Whatever the reason, you can find expert advice by consulting a specialist in laws affecting the elderly.

The term “elder law” was first coined in the late 90’s to describe any form of law pertaining to senior citizens and their legal issues. This may include health care, competency, age discrimination, estate planning, social security, survivors’ benefits and many other topics that directly affect anyone who is past retirement age. If you are over 65 and have questions about any of these issues, be sure you consult with an attorney experienced in elder law. Chicago has an increasingly grey population, with over 280,000 adults over the age of 65 within the city limits.

The Growth of Elder Law: Chicago Is Graying

Chicago’s elderly population is growing quickly, just like it is growing throughout the United States. Nearly 12% of the population is over age 65, and by 2050, there will be over 36 million senior citizens in the United States. It’s this astronomical growth that has contributed to the need for experienced estate attorneys and senior citizen focused litigation attorneys. Whether you are interested in setting up an estate in order to leave something for your children after your death or you suspect you have been discriminated against because of your age, you should consult with an elder law litigation attorney. He or she can guide you through every phase of planning or legal action necessary.

The aging of America has contributed to the growth of this legal niche. With more and more people living longer lives, there has been an increase in problems with obtaining social security benefits, processing Medicare claims, and even a rise in the number of senior citizens who are taken advantage of by rip-off artists. The right litigation attorney, Chicago based or otherwise, can help you preserve your dignity while fighting back against individuals or groups who may have taken advantage of you. Estate attorneys can help you plan for the future in order to ensure you have the funds available for enjoying life today while having a cushion for tomorrow.

The Complexity Of Elder Law: Chicago Attorneys Wear Many Hats

Law firms didn’t always distinguish between other, more general areas of law and elder law. Chicago attorneys were some of the earliest to establish practices addressing the needs of the elderly.

It’s unusual for a specific niche in the legal profession to be defined more by the type of client than by the type of law being practiced. For instance, some attorneys specialize in criminal law, others in tax law or family law. Elder law is different because the attorney isn’t focusing on any one type of law; instead he is focusing on one type of client – the senior citizen.

If you are interested in learning more about elder law, Chicago law firms can help. You don’t necessarily need a litigation attorney; Chicago has many attorneys who handle everything from drawing up a will to helping clients preserve their assets or choose an appropriate individual for power of attorney. If you’re over 65, you’ll discover that working with an elder law specialist is reassuring and efficient. You won’t have to switch from attorney to attorney as your legal needs change because your lawyer can be your estate attorney, litigation attorney, and family court attorney.

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