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Legal support for aging adults

Anyone who has had children or who has spent time with youths will be able to tell you just how fast their needs and requirements change. While an infant may need 24-hour care, support with eating and sleeping, and other significant types of help, a 7-year-old may be able to bathe themselves, eat their own meals, and conduct themselves responsibly while they are out of their home at school. What a child needs from its parents and caretakers will diminish significantly as the get older.

However, it is a sad truth that the opposite can happen as men and women move into their later lives. Particularly when illnesses and injuries affect the cognitive and physical well-being of older adults, those individuals begin to feel as though they need more help to manage their affairs. Individuals who want to ensure that they are making good decisions about their futures and are protecting their loved ones in the process may want to discuss their concerns with elder law attorneys in their communities.

The benefits of a health-care proxy in an estate plan

No one wants to think about a future where they cannot make important decisions for themselves. Whether they are unavailable due to illness, injury, or death, a person who does not have control over their own prospects may have concerns over how their wishes for the future will be respected.

In Massachusetts, individuals can take some of their concerns out of the picture by creating strong, sound estate plans.

How will I ever pay for nursing home care?

There is one constant across almost all nursing homes: they are expensive. Whether you are looking into nursing home care for yourself or are concerned for a loved one, the cost of quality care can leave a lot of uncertainty toward a person’s future. Don’t hamstring your search for care too early, though. There are options for those in need.

Massachusetts offers several programs and benefits for qualifying elders. It can mean financial support to cover nursing home residency and other vital types of care. Consider the following if you or a loved one are considering the nursing home option.

What do I do if my MassHealth application is denied?

Healthcare is expensive, and securing health insurance to pay for medical visits, prescriptions, and emergencies is not possible for all Massachusetts residents.

While some individuals are able to get health insurance for themselves and their family members through their jobs, this option is not available to every person who lives in the state. For those with low incomes and those who are in need, MassHealth can help.

Entering a nursing home does not mean relinquishing one's rights

It can be a hard on a Massachusetts family to make the difficult decision to place a loved one in a nursing home. Many people would prefer to live in their own homes if they could, and families often look at all of their options to see if they can provide their loved ones with the care they need to live as independently as possible. When the option to live alone or with relatives is not possible, individuals may find themselves looking for nursing homes to provide them with their ongoing care.

A nursing home is a facility for people who need help with their daily personal and medical needs. Nursing homes are regulated to ensure that they do not present threats or hazards to their residents, but unfortunately many individuals suffer harm at the hands of their nursing home care providers. When entering a nursing home, individuals should be aware of their rights and options for redress.

What is the probate process?

The Massachusetts probate process may seem complex and difficult to understand, but it does not have to be that way. Getting answers to common questions about what the probate process is can help estate planners and families know what to expect from probate.

Probate essentially refers to the transfer of property following the death of the estate planner. Property is usually transferred by will and the probate process collects property, pays debts from the estate and ensures the property is distributed according to the wishes of the estate planner. The probate process ensures that the will was valid and is a process conducted by the court. In general, probate may be contested or uncontested. The process involves collecting all probate property of the estate planner; collecting all rights to income or dividends; paying all debts and claims against the estate and taxes owed by the estate; settling any disputes; and distributing and transferring remaining property to the estate planner's heirs.

The important elements of an effective estate plan

There are a variety of documents that are the foundation of an effective estate plan. An estate plan can be useful and important at any stage of life whether the estate planner is concerned about planning for their children or ensuring their assets are distributed how they wish for them to be distributed.

A comprehensive and effective estate plan can be helpful for both the present and future of the estate planner. An effective overall estate plan that is thorough and carefully thought out can help provide peace of mind for the estate planner and also help prevent potential conflicts family members may have to resolve down the road during an exceptionally difficult time.

Estate planning after a divorce

Divorces later in life are becoming more common. Once the kids are grown, couples are discovering that they have nothing in common and decide to split. These so-called "gray divorces" have tripled in number since 1990. However, this creates a whole new set of considerations, particularly when it comes to retirement planning.

The basics of Medicare coverage

The commercials for financial advising companies make it seem so easy. Put some money away each month and 20 to 30 years later you will be able to everything you wished you were able to do while you spent your professional life making a normal life for your family. But there is more to retirement planning. The money you put away and the lifestyle you subscribe to is not only about preparing a nice cushy life for yourself as you grow old. As a matter of fact, retirement planning should include health care planning.

As people grow older, their medical expenses may increase. Even though the average retiree may already have coverage, it may not be sufficient to cover important medical expenses, such as preventative screenings and critical medications. This is why the use of Medicare coverage may be a possibility. This post will provide some basics on Medicare.

Guardianship: Providing plenary or limited aid

Your parent is aging quickly, and you worry that they no longer can accurately maintain their finances. Perhaps your parent’s hygiene or health is deteriorating, and you want to ensure that all aspects of their life are appropriately monitored. In a previous post, we discussed when your parent may need the appointing of a guardian. Now, we want to discuss the two variations of guardianship that Massachusetts offers families.


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