Did you know that the month of May has been devoted to honoring and supporting the nation’s senior population since 1963? During May, Older Americans Month formally recognizes Older Americans as indispensable to our society and recognizes their value. May is also National Elder Law Month, which is dedicated to promoting and providing legal support for a wide range of senior-related issues. However, without the aid of family caregivers, millions of seniors would have difficulties. In fact, family caregivers are vital to the care of our seniors year-round.

In honor of Older Americans Month, National Elder Law Month and family caregivers across the country, we would like to share some very important and much needed resources on our blog.

1. The need for respite care. Caregiving can be a tremendous sacrifice in terms of time, money and opportunity costs, especially if a senior loved one has a physical or mental health disability. Often, caregivers are at risk of developing their own health problems due to exhaustion and unmet needs. With respite care, caregivers are able to take breaks and care for themselves.

ARCH National Respite Network and Resource Center ARCH helps senior caregivers find appropriate respite care programs and services for their elder loved ones. The National Respite Locator provides a state-by-state list of facilities that can help give family members a break.

National Adult Day Services Association – This is a professional organization that provides adult day care consumer resources, including an adult day care locator and counseling on choosing the right facility for a senior loved one.

Senior Corps and Senior Corps’ Senior Companions program provides respite care by matching older volunteers with seniors who need help with daily tasks.

2. The need for health care. Do you know all the options available to seniors today? Let us share this list with you.

Department of Veterans Affairs – The V.A. provides a vast array of support services for qualifying senior veterans and their families, including a paid family caregiver benefit. The program is called Veteran-Directed Home and Community Based Services. Elder law attorneys are potent advocates for senior veterans’ rights and often help secure V.A. benefits if they’re denied.

Medicare — Medicare is a massive federal health program for people aged 65 and older. Senior caregivers might not realize that Medicare covers home health and skilled nursing services in many circumstances.

Medicaid — Medicaid is a federal-state partnership program that provides health coverage for people with limited income and assets. Medicaid can also pay for long-term care in nursing homes.

SHIPs — State Health Insurance Assistance Programs, or SHIPs, provide free support to Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers.

3. The need for legal planning. The time to start legal planning for those you love is now. We know you may have questions about what you or your aging loved ones need. From advance directives to estate planning to long-term care proactive planning, we are here to help. If you or someone you know would like more information or specific guidance on legal issues, we encourage you to contact an elder law attorney.

At the Perlin Estate Planning & Probate our credentials enable us to provide a multi-disciplinary approach to our legal services. By building relationships with our clients, we are also able to understand each client’s needs and desires, and we support such goals through thoughtful, comprehensive planning techniques. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting.