ElderLaw News

ElderLaw News is a weekly e-newsletter that brings you reports of legal developments and other trends of vital interest to seniors and their advocates. This newsletter is brought to you by The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C., William S. Fralin, Esq., President.

The Law of Later-Life Health Care and Decision Making

Recently, we reported on Eric Carlson's Baby Boomers Guide to Nursing Homes and Natalie Choate's Life and Death Planning for Retirement Benefits, in prior editions of the Elder Law News.

We have learned that, Lawrence Frolik, Professor of Law at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, has written The Law of Later Life Health Care and Decision Making. In the preface of his book, Professor Frolik states that his goal is to provide a "comprehensive description of manner in which the law regulates and reacts to health care and personal decision making for the elderly." He accomplishes this goal.

The Law of Later Life Health Care and Decision Making is divided into the following chapters:

-- Chapter 1, Paying for Health Care, discusses Medicare, Medigap insurance policies, PACE, employer health insurance for employees age 65 years and older, retiree health care benefits, and health insurance for pre-age 65 retirees.

-- Chapter 2, Long-Term Care Housing Options, discusses aging in place at home, age restricted housing, supportive housing (including assisted living facilities and continuing care retirement communities), nursing homes and hospice.

-- Chapter 3, Paying for Long-Term Care, discusses private payment (private savings, annuities, reverse mortgages, and sale of home with lease back), long-term care insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and life insurance (accelerated death benefits, life settlements, and viatical settlements).

-- Chapter 4, Legal Implications of Mental Incapacity, discusses guardianships, conservatorships, and powers of attorney.

-- Chapter 5, End-of-Life Decision Making, discusses health care decision making for incapacitated patients, living wills, health care powers of attorney, Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Orders, palliative care, hospice care, and disposition of physical remains.

Many examples of valuable information in Professor Frolik's book are:

-- As the Social Security normal retirement age increases to 67 years, individuals will be entitled to Medicare at age 65 if they are "eligible" for Social Security retirement benefits even though not receiving such benefits. Most people will be eligible for these benefits since the early retirement age remains age 62.

-- If an individual loses coverage formerly provided by an employer sponsored Medicare supplement, then the insured can not be denied coverage for any pre-existing condition for Medigap policies A, B, C, or F, provided the insured applies within 63 days of the termination of the employer sponsored policy.

-- Before a nursing home discharges a resident, even for nonpayment, the nursing home must create an appropriate post-discharge plan of care.

In addition, Professor Frolik's book demonstrates that planning for the payment of long-term care is one of the most critical aspects of later-life planning. The Law of Later Life Health Care and Decision Making provides an explanation of the principal sources of payment, including use of savings, long-term care insurance, and Medicaid.

Published by the American Bar Association in 2006, The Law of Later Life Health Care and Decision Making may be purchased from Amazon.com for $67.97. The Estate Planning and Elder Law Firm is encouraging its staff to read this fine book.


If you are interested in having an Elder Law attorney from The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. speak at an event, then please call us at:

Maryland (301) 214-2229
Virginia (703) 243-3200
Washington DC (202) 223-0270

The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C.

The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. is an elder law firm. We represent older persons, disabled persons, their families, and their advocates. The practice of elder law includes estate planning, estate and trust administration, powers of attorney, advance medical directives, titling of assets and designations of beneficiaries, guardianships, conservatorships, and public entitlements such as Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and SSI, disability planning, income tax planning and preparation, care management, and fiduciary services. For more information about The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C., please visit our website at http://www.chroniccareadvocacy.com.

Visit us on the world wide web

Our websites contain information about The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. and an archive of our newsletters and other estate planning, estate administration, and elder law articles and resources.


Distribution of This Newsletter

The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. encourages you to share this newsletter with anyone who is interested in issues pertaining to the elderly, the disabled and their advocates. The information in this newsletter may be copied and distributed, without charge and without permission, but with appropriate citation to The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. If you are interested in a free subscription to the Elder Law News, then please e-mail us at office@chroniccareadvocacy.com, telephone us at (703) 243-3200, or fax us at 703-841-9102.

This newsletter is not intended as a substitute for legal counsel. While every precaution has been taken to make this newsletter accurate, we assume no responsibility for errors, omissions, or damages resulting from the use of the information in this newsletter. The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. thanks the law firm of Hook Law Center for their input to this newsletter.

Copyright © 2006-13 by The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C.