Estate Planning v. Elder Law


What is the Difference Between Estate Planning and Elder Law?

Elder law and estate planning are two areas of law that are not well understood.  Many seniors have little understanding as to what constitutes elder law, as opposed to estate planning.  Our estate planning and elder law lawyers at OC Wills and Trusts discuss the main differences between estate planning and elder law, and why each legal field is important as you age.

Estate Planning Explained

Estate planning is the field of law concerned with what happens when you die.  Estate planning focuses extensively on wills and trusts.  Through an estate plan, you can control who will receive your assets when you die.  Proper estate planning can save your heirs significantly in taxes and court fees, as well as preventing strife among family members. Your estate plan offers a way to preserve your legacy, ensuring your final wishes for your hard earned assets are carried out to the fullest extent.

Elder Law Defined

While estate planning focuses on what happens if you die, elder law addresses the opposite—what happens as you reach the sunset of your life.  Elder law deals with the unique issues so often faced by the elderly.  Elder care planning involves four primary areas: housing, financial, healthcare, and legal issues.

An elder law attorney can assist seniors in nearly all aspects of their daily lives.  Elder law lawyers can help the elderly in securing public benefits, like Medi-Cal, while still preserving their assets.  They can also guide seniors in planning for the rising costs of health and nursing home care.  For the elderly that wish to stay in their home, an elder law lawyer can assist them in making the adaptations needed to remain at home safely.  Proper elder law planning can allow you to flourish financially in your golden years, while estate planning can ensure your assets are protected even after your death.

Aging Californians should contact an elder law and estate planning lawyer for assistance with all of their senior related needs.  Putting off elder law and estate planning can leave you vulnerable to the financial issues that accompany aging and death.  With advance planning you can enhance your life and legacy.

Brian Chew, the managing partner of OC Wills & Trust Attorneys, has extensive experience in the areas of estate planning, asset protection planning, business succession planning, long-term care planning, and veterans’ benefits. By devoting his practice to estate planning matters, he has founded a firm that strives to provide exceptional service to their clients by working closely with individuals and their families to create comprehensive and customized estate plans. For the past twenty five years, Brian has served thousands of clients in the matters of estate planning, wills and trusts. If you have any questions about this article, you can reach Brian Chew here.