As the population in the United States ages, issues relating to the elderly have become a bigger concern. Health care issues, social issues, and legal issues are all studied, discussed, and analyzed as they apply to the elderly in the 21st century. Given the fact that the elderly population in America is expected to outnumber the young population (under 21) by the year 2050 it only makes sense to focus on issues that the elderly face. Among those who have chosen to focus on issues faced by the elderly are elder law attorneys. Because it is likely that you will need the services of an elder law attorney in the Quad Cities at some point in your life it is beneficial to know exactly what a Quad Cities Illinois elder law attorney does.
Elder law is a relatively new area of the law. It wasn’t until the late 1980s that elder law became a recognized area of sociality within the legal profession. As the number of older Americans began to grow at a noticeable rate, attorneys began to recognize the need for legal professionals who understand the legal needs of the elderly and those who care for them. Elder law is a very distinct area of the law that requires an attorney to have a broad knowledge base from which to draw when advising and advocating for clients. Unlike an area such as contracts where an attorney focuses on a fairly narrow set of case law and precedent when advising and assisting clients, elder law often draws from numerous areas of the law when deciding how to solve a legal problem. For example, if a family member is concerned that an elderly loved one is showing early signs of dementia an elder law attorney must consider how to plan for incapacitation, how to address the long-term care issues, and how to ensure that the elderly individual will qualify for Medicaid to cover the costs of the long-term care that will eventually be needed in most cases.
In summary, an elder law attorney is an attorney who has made the decision to focus on the needs of the elderly – not just on specific legal issues. An elder law attorney will often work closely with social service providers, healthcare workers, and the client’s family members to find legal solutions to complicated problems faced by the elderly.
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