What Is the Difference Between Estate Planning and Elder Law?

As you look towards your future, you might want to schedule meetings with both an elder lawyer and estate planner, or to find an attorney who practices in both of these spaces. While there is some crossover, certain lawyers focus only on one or another.

As you think about end of life issues and the proper administration and transfer of your assets to your loved ones, you may have questions about the difference between estate planning and elder law.

Both estate planners and elder lawyers cover many similar issues but these are actually different concerns. The primary difference is that elder law planning seeks to preserve your assets and income for use while you are still alive to enable you to maintain your lifestyle or to enable you to have the funds available to you to be as comfortable as possible if you need to go into a nursing home.

Estate planning often considers elder law issues at least at a basic level but is more often concerned with implementing your wishes and then distributing your assets after you pass away in the most tax advantaged and efficient way. These two processes go hand in hand.

Without estate planning documents you make it difficult for your loved ones to receive your assets. Without an elder law plan to protect and preserve your income and assets, you may find that you don’t have an estate to pass onto your loved ones to begin with.


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