Did you know that May is National Elder Law Month? This month is dedicated to highlighting the legal issues and challenges that seniors encounter and learn how to support them effectively. With California’s significant senior population understanding how to care for aging individuals is important. We have six ways to help provide better care and ensure the legal protection of senior family members in California.

  1. Help your seniors by understanding the California-specific estate planning tools for elder care. California offers unique legal tools tailored for elder care planning, including durable powers of attorney and health care surrogates. With these tools seniors can appoint someone they trust to make decisions on their behalf should they become unable to do so. During National Elder Law Month, families should review these documents with an experienced California estate planning attorney to ensure they align with current laws and personal circumstances.


  1. Help your seniors protect assets and plan for long-term care. One of the biggest concerns for seniors is how to pay for long-term care without depleting their life savings. California-specific Medi-Cal planning can be an essential strategy for asset protection and ensuring eligibility for benefits that cover long-term care costs. An experienced California estate planning and elder law attorney can assist families in navigating complex long-term rules and implementing legal strategies like irrevocable trusts or appropriate asset transfers.


  1. Help your seniors age-in-place. During National Elder Law Month, it is important to focus on improving home safety for California seniors wanting to age in place. Begin by conducting a safety audit to identify and mitigate fall hazards, such as loose rugs and clutter, and be sure that all areas are well-lit, particularly hallways and bathrooms. Install grab bars in strategic locations within bathrooms and consider safer bathing options like walk-in tubs or showers with seats. Seniors also need easy access emergency response systems, such as wearable devices that enable them to call for help if needed. Regular maintenance of home systems and timely updates to safety devices like smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are crucial to prevent accidents and ensure a safe, independent living environment for aging seniors.


  1. Help your seniors and your family be aware and understand elder abuse. Elder abuse, including financial exploitation, is a growing concern in California. National Elder Law Month is an excellent opportunity for families to educate themselves and their seniors about the signs of elder abuse and the steps to take if abuse is suspected. Everyone needs to know that California law offers protections against elder abuse, and understanding these can help families take swift action to protect their elderly members.


  1. Help you seniors with the use of their technology by tutoring them. Help your seniors become more tech-savvy by spending some time with them to explore their smartphone, tablet, or computer. Teach them how to use social media to stay connected with friends and family, manage healthcare appointments online, and access useful information. This not only enhances their digital skills but also helps them maintain their independence and social connections.


  1. Help your seniors by arranging reliable transportation to health care appointments and more. It is important that your senior family members never miss an important medical appointment by organizing their transportation. Whether it is accompanying them yourself or setting up rides with reliable volunteer services, your involvement can make a big difference. In addition, consider bringing them to local health fairs during this important month where they can benefit from free health screenings and expert advice without the hassle of long travels.

Caring for aging seniors in California involves more than just meeting their daily needs, it also requires careful legal planning to ensure their rights are protected and their future is secure. During National Elder Law Month, families are encouraged to review and update their elder care plans. Choosing to work with a knowledgeable California estate planning and elder law attorney can provide peace of mind that all are prepared for the challenges of aging.

We know this article may raise more questions than it answers.  Do you have questions? We know this article may raise more questions than it answers. Our office is here for you and your loved ones. Please call us to schedule a meeting time.