Barbara Fradkin – Hometown News

Do I really need an elder law attorney?

Great question! Before I became a social worker, I thought one attorney was just like another. But as I became a specialist in my own field, I learned that attorneys (like doctors) have specialties, too.

Elder law attorneys advocate for seniors and their loved ones. They handle all sorts of matters affecting older or disabled persons, including issues related to health care, long-term care planning, guardianship, retirement, Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid. An elder care attorney working on your behalf navigates the legal maze related to aging.

Estate Planning

Everyone (not just rich people) should have a Power of Attorney, Living Will and Durable Power of Attorney. These documents allow someone you designate to make medical and financial decision for you if you cannot do so. The attorney will evaluate your circumstances and assist you with a will, trust, and plan for long-term care needs.

If you become incapacitated and do NOT have a Power of Attorney, a conservatorship for financial matters and guardianship for medical decisions may be required. You can avoid this scenario by choosing your own designee now!

Long-term Care

Private in-home care or long-term facilities can be very expensive. What if you don’t have the finances for it? Medicaid? Are you a veteran and eligible for government benefits? This is all part of the work of an elder law attorney.

Mediation, Probate & more

As we age, some situations become difficult to handle. Aging parents may be unable to make the decisions they once could. What happens when the adult children need to make decisions for Mom and Dad? What if the “Kids” cannot agree about care decisions? Who can mediate this?

Then there’s probate. We’re supposed to avoid it somehow, right? What about second marriages and blended families? Elder exploitation? When situations change, elder law attorneys can guide us.

Call One Senior Place in Viera at 321-751-6771 to find a qualified elder law attorney.


One Senior Place is a marketplace for resources and provider of information, advice, care and on-site services for seniors and their families. Questions for this column are answered by professionals in nursing, social work, care management and in-home care. Send questions to or visit One Senior Place, The Experts in Aging at Barbara Fradkin is a Social Worker, Certified Care Manager and the Director of One Senior Place, Viera.