The varied aspects of estate planning for New York seniors

As residents of New York grow older, they develop a different set of concerns and issues than they may have when they were younger. Some of those issues involve subjects like planning for Medicaid and advanced health care matters, like durable powers of attorney and living wills. However, even estate planning takes on whole new aspects for the elderly.

There are actually attorneys who specialize in assisting seniors with the many various tools that can be used in effective estate planning. Estate plans can be customized to each individual's needs, for example, to ensure assets stay within the family and are not inherited by an adult child's spouse. In cases involving beneficiaries who have special needs, credit problems or other issues, a trust can be utilized to ensure asset protection while still providing for them.

Additionally, senior citizens who have divorced and remarried can work with an attorney to make sure that both the current spouse and any children are provided for after the individual's passing, as well as children from previous relationships. Elder law attorneys can also help in instances when families need to seek guardianship over elderly loved ones when they are no longer physically or mentally capable of managing their own affairs. Sadly, occasionally a family may need the representation of a lawyer in instances where a senior has fallen victim to fraud, exploitation, or even abuse.

When an elderly individual passes away, a New York estate planning attorney can assist in asset distribution according to the terms set forth within the will. Conversely, if he or she died intestate, such a lawyer can help with probate administration according to state intestacy laws. Beyond Medicaid planning for nursing home stays and advanced health care planning, there are a variety of ways New York individuals can benefit from the professional knowledge of an elder law attorney.

Source:, "Top 10 Reasons To Consult An Elder Law Attorney by Kara Gansmann", Kara Gansmann, July 5, 2017

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