The older population in the United States has been growing at an unprecedented rate for the last several decades – and experts tell us the trend will continue for the foreseeable future. As a result of the senior population explosion, issues that impact seniors, and those who care for them, have taken center stage in the U.S. in recent years. The legal community has also taken note and created a new practice area known as “elder law” that focuses on the needs of seniors and their caregivers. As of the 2010 Census, the City of Ladera Heights had a population of approximately 6,498 residents. Residents age 65 or older made up 23.5 percent of the population and 12.8 percent of all households had someone age 65 or older living alone.
If you are a senior yourself, or the caregiver of a senior, you will likely find yourself in need of services aimed at assisting the older residents of the community. To help you find those resources when you need them, the elder law attorneys at Collins Law Group have put together the following Ladera Heights, California elder law resources.
Local Government and Law Enforcement
It is always wise to have some of the more frequently used local government resources handy in case you need them. Because Ladera Heights is a census designated place (CDP) and unincorporated area within Los Angeles County, most of the important government resources will be found on the official Los Angeles County website. The website offers telephone numbers and contact information for most county government offices as well as helpful information about the county itself. You may also find helpful resources on the Ladera Heights Community Information website. It is equally important to be able to quickly and easily navigate to emergency contact information such as the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Nursing Homes, Assisted Living, and Home Health Care
Although we can all look forward to a much longer average life expectancy than our ancestors had just a few generations ago, the natural aging process catches up to all of us eventually in the form of physical and/or mental deterioration. At some point, it may become unsafe to remain in your home by yourself which may prompt the search for assisted living or nursing home care. Ladera Heights residents are fortunate to have a wide variety of options from which to choose in this area. If you are looking for assisted living or nursing home care for yourself or for your loved one, the following resources may be of help:
- California Care Planning Council offers the ability to search for skilled nursing care as well as alternatives types of care for seniors. In addition, you will also find a wealth of additional information and resources for the elderly on the website.
- com is a website that allows you to search or home health care providers, assisted living facilities and skilled nursing homes all in the Ladera Heights area.
- The Medicare.gov website has a Nursing Home Compare section that lets you search for, and compare, nursing homes in the Ladera Heights, California area.
- The County of Los Angeles, Health Facilities Inspection Division website offers performance ratings for all licensed facilities within the county.
Todays seniors are not content to just sit in their rocking chairs on the front porch and watch the world go by. Instead, most seniors consider retirement to be an opportunity to work on that bucket list with old friends or to meet new friends with whom they can have new adventures. If you are looking for places to mingle or meet new friends, there are numerous Community and Senior Centers located throughout Los Angeles County. The Los Angeles County Parks and Recreation Department also has a page devoted to seniors where you will find activities just for you. If you are a veteran, the Veterans of Foreign Wars website will help you find the nearest VFW post.
State and Federal Assistance
Many state and federal resources and assistance programs are geared specifically at seniors. An excellent example is the California Department of Aging. 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) website. 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 long-term care at some point the California Medi-Cal for Seniors program may be able to help. The California Healthcare Foundation offers a wealth of information about the types of benefits available and eligibility guidelines. To apply for Medi-Cal for Seniors benefits, navigate to the California Department of Healthcare Services website.
Although there are an ever-increasing number of state and federal benefits and services available to help seniors, making sense of the eligibility guidelines and navigating the application process can be challenging. The elder law attorneys at Collins Law Office are familiar with the various benefits and services to which you may be entitled. Contact Collins Law Firm by calling (310) 677-9787 to register for one of our FREE estate planning workshops.