New York & New Jersey Elder Law Attorney

Getting older is an unavoidable part of life. But being financially unprepared for the future doesn’t have to be. Elder law is a key part in securing a future for your family.

Reaching the age of retirement often comes more quickly than we expect. That’s why it always pays to be proactive about how your retirement will play out. And the elder law attorneys at Merlino & Gonzalez are here to help with that. We have decades of experience planning all kinds of estates and helping people manage the complex documents and processes involved. And we’ve helped people of all ages plan for their retirement this way—no matter how close to or far from it they may be.

Whether your estate plan needs updating or you have yet to get around to preparing one, now is a great time to make an appointment with our team to discuss your smartest options.

We’re familiar with all the complications and unexpected hurdles that can that arise during your golden years, and we have the experience you need to help determine your priorities, answer your questions, prepare all necessary documents, and tailor your estate plan to meet your unique needs accordingly. Whatever the size or complexity of your estate, we’re ready to help you pass on your assets as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Why You Need Our Capable Staten Island and New Jersey Elder Law Attorneys

For many people, the aging process makes life more complicated and decisions more difficult to make. But you’ll find that our knowledgeable lawyers can clarify all your options. We’ll ask the right questions and provide the right insights to make your decisions easier and the entire process less confusing.

 Because we’re committed to providing you with superior service, we pride ourselves on:

  • Our attention to detail.
  • Our respect for your personal preferences.
  • Keeping current with all changes to state and federal laws regarding necessary documentation, taxes, and more.
  • Our ability to customize your estate plan to address your particular needs.
  • Our commitment to protecting your assets and maintaining your eligibility for Medicaid and other government benefits.

 And above all, we pride ourselves on always treating you kindly and respectfully. 

Elder Law Services We Offer

Once you become our client, our elder law attorneys will dedicate themselves to helping you by providing a variety of services, including:

Preparing Wills 

Our elder law attorneys are also estate planning attorneys, which means we can also prepare wills so you can name your executor and your beneficiaries, designate a guardian for any minor children, and state your specific wishes about your after-death arrangements (like your funeral, burial, or cremation),

Protecting Assets by Creating Trusts

We can also help you create trusts to protect your assets from estate taxes, creditors, or ex-spouses. Some trusts can also provide for a loved one with special needs, or protect a spend-happy heir from themselves. There are even pet trusts and charitable trusts to take advantage of if you so desire. But trust establishment can be complicated without the right guide, so we’ll help you discover all the ways you can benefit from the variety of trusts available.

Establishing a Guardianship

Guardianships come in many forms, but in the case of you or someone you love becoming incapacitated, it will be necessary to establish a guardianship that ensures the individual who you usually care for continues to have the care they need. This ward could be a minor child, elderly parents, or anyone else in your life that you provide for and want to continue providing for should something happen to you.

Setting Up a Conservatorship

A conservator is someone you designate as responsible for managing a ward’s monetary assets that you leave to them. This can often involve investing the ward’s money wisely, paying the ward’s debts, and generally acting in the ward’s best financial interests. So if you or a member of your family requires help with monetary matters, we can help you have the court appoint the right conservator for the job.

Retaining Government Benefits After an Inheritance Through Elder Law

It can be extremely frustrating dealing with government agencies like Medicaid or Social Security if you aren’t sure what you’re doing. So having one of our experienced elder law attorneys help you navigate processes with them can be invaluable. Any lawyer on our team will see to it that you receive the benefits you’re entitled to at the right time and that your money is properly stored in a trust so your ability to keep receiving those benefits isn’t jeopardized.

Planning for Incapacity and/or Long-Term Care

Painful as it is to consider, most of us will need some kind of long-term care before we die. The elder law attorneys of Merlino & Gonzalez are not only competent in planning for these matters but approach them with compassion as well. We will work diligently to draft the documents you need to shield yourself from some of the prospects of aging, including: 

  • Being unable to communicate your wishes about your health care.
  • Being unable to handle your finances, or even simply sign a check or use your credit card.
  • Being unable to take legal action on your own behalf.
  • Being unable to agree that your medical information may be shared with family members.

 We’ll help you avoid these problems by creating some or all of the following documents:

  • Durable Power of Attorney
  • Health Care Proxy
  • Advanced Directive (Living Will) 
  • HIPAA Compliance Form

Even if the accident or illness that incapacitates you is not a fatal one, having these documents at the ready may not only relieve your family’s anguish, but it may ultimately save your life. 

Contact Our Experienced Staten Island and New Jersey Elder Law Attorneys Today

Our elder law attorneys are here to provide you with the tools you need to feel secure in knowing that you’ve done everything possible to protect your assets and loved ones. Contact us today so we can help you get your estate plans started, or tie up any loose ends your pans might have. No matter what stage of life you’re in, we have ways to help.

Merlino & Gonzalez help residents of New York & New Jersey with their elder law needs. Since their primary office is in Staten Island, they receive a lot of clients there as well as in the boroughs of Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, & The Bronx.