What is the difference between elder law and estate planning? If you do estate planning, does it mean that you don’t need to do elder law planning? Elder Law and Estate Planning attorney Matthew Crider discusses the importance of both in this video.
WHAT IS THE DIFFENCE BETWEEN ESTATE PLANNING AND ELDER LAW?
People often ask us about the difference between estate planning and elder law. The two go hand-in-hand. One way they are similar is that both are more universal than they initially seem. Estate planning is not only for those with large estates. Elder law is not only for the elderly.
But there are also important distinctions between them.
Estate planning focuses on an individual’s assets. How they should be held while the individual is still living? How they should be distributed after that individual dies?
An estate planning attorney can use tax-planning strategies to minimize estate taxes. Proper estate planning can also use substitutes for a will, to minimize the cost of probate.
Of primary importance to many clients is the ability to make specific choices regarding the beneficiaries on each of his or her assets. With the help of an estate planning attorney, you can create a plan that reflects your wishes about how your property should be distributed after your death.
Without an estate plan, the court will distribute your assets according to the strict requirements of the law. Which may be different than what you want.
Additionally, an estate planning attorney can create a plan that includes protecting the needs of minor children or family members with disabilities, so that each family is best provided for according to their unique and individual needs.
Elder law is a broad field that encompasses many different areas of the law. It is not just for the elderly. And it can be most effective when started before someone is at an advanced age.
Elder law focuses on providing a plan to continue living according to one’s wishes as that person gets older, while remaining in good financial standing.
Depending on the individual’s circumstances, this plan can include trusts, gifts to family members, buying long-term care insurance in anticipation of potential future needs, or qualifying for Medi-Cal or VA benefits.
Elder law planning also may include many of the estate planning tools, such as trusts and Powers of Attorney to avoid the need for a conservatorship. The plan should also include medical planning. This is so that the individual can name someone to make health care decisions if that individual can’t anymore.
A proper elder law plan should be a comprehensive, holistic plan, taking into account the specific needs of the individual and his or her future needs as he or she ages.
Attorneys practicing in the fields of estate planning and elder law share a common goal. To help the clients achieve their wishes while protecting their property and assets for themselves and their loved ones.
It is important to reach out to a qualified elder care and estate planning attorney for help in ensuring that you have planned for your future.