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ELDER LAW What IS ELDER LAW? As a population, the United States is 'graying'.  More of us are living longer, and with that longevity comes enhanced vulnerability, and increasingly complex legal and financial issues.  Attorneys that focus primarily on the areas of Elder Abuse, Medi-Cal or government benefits planning, Conservatorship, Geriatric Care, and related areas such as Retirement Planning and Estate Planning have come to describe themselves as practicing Elder Law.  Anne M. Campbell, Esq., exclusively practices in this area of the law. With an emphasis on Elder Law, an attorney must blend a broad array of skills into the legal practice, including familiarity with geriatric medicine, psychology and health issues, compassion for changing abilities and family dynamics, comprehensive knowledge of investments, real estate and other assets, and the law.  At The Law Offices of Anne M. Campbell, PC, clients find an extraordinary group of experienced staff that assist this multi-faceted attorney to quickly reassure and manage such troubles.  Those facing the problems of aging are not 'just another file', they and their families are supported on a long-term basis. What is ELDER ABUSE? There is a specific legal definition in California for "Elder Abuse".  Elder abuse is the neglect, exploitation or "painful or harmful" mistreatment of anyone who is 65 or older (or who falls under the legal definition of a "dependent" adult aged 18-64). It could be physical violence, abandonment, false imprisonment, isolation, physical abuse, psychological abuse, isolation or a caregiver's neglect. It can also include identity theft, or the theft or embezzlement of a senior's property. Elder Abuse is not commonly understood to include mental or emotional abuse, but it does.  The sad facts supporting the increasing incidents of elder financial, emotional and physical abuse are abundantly found.  However, you can do something about this!  You can PLAN AHEAD, SUPPORT, REPORT, and ASSIST.  At The Law Offices of Anne M. Campbell, PC, we advise you how to do this.  If you are the victim of elder abuse, we aggressively pursue your protection.  But DO NOT WAIT - if you think you might be abused, you probably are.  Call 911 in emergencies, but before that happens, call us. HELPFUL INFORMATION RELATED TO ELDER ABUSE: What should I do if I suspect someone is abusing or exploiting an elderly friend? If you suspect that a form of abuse is occurring, IN AN EMERGENCY CALL 911 AND THE POLICE OR SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT IMMEDIATELY.  If there is not an immediate emergency, call your local Adult Protective Services : 24-HOUR ABUSE HOTLINE: 800-850-0012.  Then, have the abused elder contact The Law Offices of Anne M. Campbell, PC, to determine if the elder can become a client and be protected.  Or, if you wish to help an elder whom you suspect is being abused, you may become our client to protect them, ... call for an initial interview. If I suspect elder abuse, do I HAVE TO REPORT it? If you are responsible for taking care of an elder or dependent adult, you are a MANDATORY REPORTER.  Mandatory reporters include:  administrators, supervisors or licensed staff of facilities providing care and services for the elders;  APS (Adult Protective Services) Employees;  Physicians, Police or other Peace Officers;  and certain Financial Institutions (banks and credit unions).  If a mandatory reporter fails to report suspected abuse, he or she could be charged with a misdemeanor (WIC §15630). To determine who is a reporter, and how to report, you may like this reference:  A Citizen's Guide to Preventing & Reporting Elder Abuse:  http://ag.ca.gov/bmfea/pdfs/guide.pdf . Who can check on my elderly mother's well-being for me? If you are worried about a parent or elderly friend who lives in another community, you can contact the local law enforcement agency there and request a well-being check.  Law enforcement agencies in some communities are struggling with budget issues presently, so if a well-check is not feasible from the police, check below for more information, and contact us for more ideas on your local support systems, placement agencies and systems. What are the Various Housing Options for Elderly Care? Shared housing - A directory listing California "match-up" and "group residence" programs. Senior citizen housing development - such developments are usually specially tailored to seniors 55 and older. Senior housing - paying a monthly fee at a facility that provides an apartment, communal meals, housekeeping and in some cases, transportation. Assisted Living Facility - a licensed residential care facility for the elderly which would provide supervision and home-like, non-medical services (room, meals, laundry, transportation and some basic assistance with daily activities). Such facilities are generally not licensed to care for anyone who is bedridden or who requires 24-hour nursing care. Board-and-care home - often a converted private home housing up to six residents who need some assistance with bathing, eating and other basic daily activities. Continuing Care Community -  offers all levels of care. A facility that usually promises to care for you as you age - sometimes for the rest of your life - in exchange for an entrance fee and/or periodic charges. ELDER ON-LINE RESOURCES Eldercare Locator Nationwide information and resource center for seniors and caregivers. Long-Term Care Ombudsman Trained individuals who advocate for the protection and rights of all residents of 24-hour long-term care facilities. The primary responsibility of the Ombudsman is to investigate and resolve complaints made by, or on behalf of, individual residents. National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse Association of researchers, medical practitioners and advocates dedicated to the safety and security of the elderly. Serves as the nation's clearinghouse on information and materials on elder abuse and neglect. National Hispanic Council on Aging Provides information on issues critical to Latino seniors, including those pertaining to health, income, education, employment and housing. National Institute on Aging Information and consumer information on health and research advances in aging issues. National Family Caregiver's Association Grassroots organization dedicated to improving life for family caregivers, or those caring for loved ones with a chronic illness or disability. National Senior Citizens' Law Center Provides information for elder and dependent adults on such issues as Medicare, Medi-cal, SSI and pensions. Nursing Home Compare: Site designed to help individuals choose a nursing home; includes comprehensive inspection results for all nursing homes.

Anne M. Campbell, Esq.

Call to make an appointment in Northern California counties: (707)449-0800 For appointments in Central California or with other questions: (805)594-1669 Anne@AnneCampbellLaw.com State Bar # 114687
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