The older population in the United States has grown at a record breaking rate in recent decades. Experts tell us that the dramatic increase is due to a combination of a significantly longer average life expectancy in the U.S. and the fact that the “Baby Boomer” generation is moving into their retirement years. Although seniors have many of the same legal and social concerns that their younger counterparts have, they also experience unique issues and problems. Plainfield, New Jersey has a population of about 50,000 residents that make up approximately 15,000 households. As of the 2010 Census, 9.5 percent of the population was aged 65 or older and 7.6 percent of the households had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older.
Whether you are a senior yourself, or the caregiver of one, living in the Plainfield, New Jersey area, you will undoubtedly find the need for a number of elder resources from time to time. Because we understand how difficult it can be to locate some of these resources, the attorneys and staff at Augulis Law Firm have put some resources together for you that you may find helpful. If you have specific questions involving any legal issues that impact seniors, please feel free to contact our office to make an appointment with one of our elder law attorneys.
Local Government and Law Enforcement
Because you never know when an emergency may arise, it is always wise to have contact information for some of the more frequently used local government resource handy. Many of those can be found on the City of Plainfield website. The website offers a wealth of helpful information including a directory of city government offices, a city calendar with upcoming events, and links to helpful government offices such as the Recreation Department. It is equally important to be able to quickly and easily navigate to the relevant law enforcement agency online, should you need them. The Plainfield Police Department and the Union County Sheriff’s Office service residents who live in and around Plainfield, New Jersey.
Nursing Homes, Assisted Living, and Home Health Care
As we age, the natural aging process causes us to deteriorate physically and mentally. Sometimes, conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease speed along that natural deterioration. Thanks to advances in medicine and science along with a better standard of living, the average American can expect to be around for many years beyond retirement age. Most seniors would prefer to remain in the comfort of their own home for as long as possible. Fortunately, services such as home health care can often allow a senior to do just that. Likewise, you may choose to move to an assisted living facility long before the need for around the clock, skilled nursing care arises. Residents of Plainfield, New Jersey are fortunate in that they have a number of different care options that meet the differing needs of seniors in the community. If you need assistance deciding on health care services or facilities, the following resources may be of assistance:
- The State of New Jersey, Department of Health offers a searchable database for both acute care and long-term care facilities. You can search by county, city, name, or even owner.
- Nursing Home Compare, found on the Medicare.gov website is the official U.S. government’s website for Medicare, offering you the ability to search for and compare licenses nursing homes anywhere in the country.
- New Jersey Care Planning Council website which offers a listing of nursing homes in the area as well as a variety of other resources that help you manage the need for long-term care for yourself or for a loved one.
- The com website lists nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and community care options in New Jersey along with detailed information about the listings.
The cost of long-term care (LTC) in the United States has increased right along with the older population, and is expected to continue to increase in the years to come. Although the average cost of a year in a LTC facility across the nation in 2017 was around $80,000, the higher cost of living in much of New England means that as a resident of New Jersey you can expect to pay considerably more for LTC. In 2017, the average cost of LTC in New Jersey was over $125,000 a year. Consulting with an elder law attorney is the best way to ensure that you have the resources to cover LTC when the time comes that you need it or, in the alternative, that you qualify for Medicaid which will help cover your LTC expenses. The elder law attorneys at Augulis Law Firm can help you prepare for the financial challenges you may face if long-term care is needed.
As you probably already know, retirement doesn’t have to slow you down! On the contrary, many seniors enjoy getting out and about and socializing with old friends and making new ones. If you are a veteran, there are several American Legion Posts located nearby as well as the VFW Post 6763. You might also try the City of Plainfield Senior Services website for social events and programs geared specifically for seniors.
State and Federal Assistance
Many state and federal resources and assistance programs are geared specifically at seniors. For residents of Plainfield, New Jersey, a good resource is the Union County Aging and Disability Resource Connection. Another great resource is the State of New Jersey, Department of Human Services, Division of Aging Services. Many seniors also qualify for assistance from the Social Security disability or Social Security retirement program. For information, including application instructions, visit the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) disability website. To sign up for your Social Security retirement benefits, navigate to the sign up website of the SSA. If you are a veteran, or the surviving spouse or dependent of a veteran, you may also be entitled to a number of benefits through the Veteran’s Administration. Along with well-known benefits such as pension and disability benefits, you might qualify for additional benefits you may not be familiar with, such as Veteran’s Aid and Attendance benefits. Once you reach retirement age, you will likely be automatically enrolled in the Medicare program. Although basic Medicare is free to all seniors, Medicare actually has four parts and the other three parts may come with a premium. If you have questions about a covered service or need to find a provider, the official Medicare website can help. In addition, if you need help covering the high cost of long-term care at some point you might qualify for New Jersey FamilyCare Aged, Blind, Disabled, New Jersey’s Medicaid program.
Fortunately, there are a wide range of state and federal benefits and services available to help seniors. Making sense of the eligibility guidelines and navigating the application process, however, can be challenging. The elder law attorneys at Augulis Law Firm are familiar with the various benefits and services to which you may be entitled and are committed to helping you with any questions or concerns you may have about eligibility or appealing a denial. Whether you are a senior yourself or a caregiver, we are here if you need us.
Getting Help from a Plainfield, New Jersey Elder Law Attorney
Our experienced, compassionate, and caring team of elder law attorneys and staff are dedicated to helping our senior population and the people who care for them with legal issues and concerns, such as the need to coordinate retirement planning with your existing estate plan, asset protection, Medicaid planning, and incapacity planning. Our experienced elder law attorneys are also available to assist you with other areas typically of concern to seniors and those who care for them, such as incapacity planning, asset protection and incorporating your retirement plans into your estate plan. If you have additional questions or concerns about any of these elder law issues, contact an experienced New Jersey elder law attorney at Augulis Law Firm today by calling 908-222-8803 to schedule your appointment today.