Planning for Life

How Will We House an Aging Population?

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on November 6, 2018

By Harry S. Margolis

Harvard's Joint Center for Housing Studies has published a report on the challenges of housing our aging population over the next two decades. harvard_jchs_housing_growing_population_cover[1]

The Coming Crisis

Here are some of its findings:

  • The over-65 population will increase from 48 million today to 79 million in 2035.
  • The over-80 population will double from 12 to 24 million.
  • By 2035, one in five Americans will be 65 or over, up from one in seven today.
  • The Joint Center projects that by 2035, 17 million older households will include someone with a mobility disability, 12 million needing with a self-care disability and 27 million with a household activity disability.
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Topics: home care, seniors

Managing Risk for Unpredictable Events

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on March 27, 2018

By Harry S. Margolis

At a recent conference of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, I spent some time catching up with my old friend and colleague, Paul Sturgul.Paul-Picture-225x300.jpg Paul practices in a very different part of the country from me, in Hurley, Wisconsin, as opposed to Boston's Back Bay. Hurley, which has just over 1,500 residents, is about 100 miles east of Duluth, Minnesota, near the southern shores of Lake Superior. (If you think we've been having a long winter, the average high temperature in Hurley in March is 25 degrees and the average low is 15.)

5536525_WI_Hurley.pngWhile Paul has to drive a lot further to see his clients (he has a second office in Ashland, 38 miles from Hurley), what we do for our clients is surprisingly similar. Here's how Paul describes the essence of elder law:

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Topics: elder law, seniors

What Would the House Tax Bill Mean for Seniors?

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on November 7, 2017

By Harry S. Margolis

iStock-144229773.jpg

Perhaps we shouldn't be concerned with the House Republicans' proposed tax bill. With no Democratic support, a slim Republican majority in both houses, and a somewhat more moderate Republican majority in the Senate, it is unlikely to become law in its current form, if at all. On the other hand, the Republicans need a victory and will do everything they can to pass the law in something close to its current form.

So, what does it mean for seniors and people with disabilities? The two largest impacts would probably result from the projected loss of tax revenue and the elimination of the medical expense deduction.

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Topics: income taxes, seniors, Medicaid, Medicare

Demented Patient Liable for Injuries He Causes

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on November 15, 2016

By Harry S. Margolis

In Mary Ellen Gioia v. Richard D. and Ann L. Ratner, the Essex County superior court in Massachusetts refuses to dismiss a lawsuit brought by a registered nurse who claims she was injured by a patient in her care. She brought the suit against the patient, Richard Ratner, and his wife and health care agent, Ann Ratner. Judge Diane M. Kottmyer rules that the suit against Mr. Ratner can move forward but dismisses the claim against his wife.

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Topics: elder law, seniors, dementia, incapacity, caregiving, hospital care, deficit

Exciting New Proposal to Help With Housing for Elderly and Disabled in Massachusetts

Posted by Elizabeth Stepakoff on January 25, 2016

By Karen B. Mariscal

Given the cost of living in Massachusetts, we need to think creatively about how to make sure the elderly and disabled can afford to stay in their home communities, close to their families.  Encouragingly, a bill has been introduced in the State House to create the Disabled and Elderly Accessory Apartment Loan Program, which would allow a homeowner to take out a low-cost loan from the state to create an accessory apartment of up to two bedrooms, provided a person with a disability or a senior citizen residesin the new unit or in the original part of the home.

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Topics: seniors, housing policy ,, disability

When Should You Call In an Elder Mediator? -- Massachusetts

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on October 29, 2013

By Harry S. Margolis

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Topics: long-term care planning, seniors

Weisman Warns Seniors (and the Rest of Us) About Scams - Massachusetts

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on March 10, 2013

By Harry S. Margolis

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Topics: seniors, identity theft, Estate Planning, asset protection

5 Guidelines for Caring for the Caregiver - Massachusetts

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on July 10, 2012

By Harry S. Margolis

Taking care of a senior, whether due to dementia or illness, can be exhausting and stressful. Often due to the lack of outside help, a devotion to the person needing care, or the tunnel vision that can accompany exhaustion, caretakers don’t take care of themselves.  

If this describes you, you must take care of yourself.  Failure to do so can lead to burn out, injury or illness.  If you are the caregiver, any of these results will harm your ability to care for your loved one.
Photo by Tim Doerfler on Unsplash


Here are some steps you can take to take care of yourself and make sure you can take care of your loved one:

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Topics: seniors, dementia, caregiving, long-term care planning

Do You Live in a NORC?

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on October 3, 2011

By Harry S. Margolis

I recently met with a new client who commented that she lives in a NORC.

"A what?" I asked.iStock-474949592.jpg

"A Naturally Occurring Retirement Community," she responded.

She explained that she and her neighbors in the apartment complex where she lives are all getting older.  Without a lot of people moving in and out, the facility is taking on the demographics of a retirement community.

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Topics: seniors, Retirement Planning, long-term care planning, nursing homes

Modern Marriage for Seniors and Soon-to-be-Seniors (Baby Boomers)

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on February 9, 2011

boomer weddingBy Harry S. Margolis

My client’s wife, a retired attorney and business owner, unfortunately suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. He visits her almost every day in the special assisted living dementia unit where she lives.

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Topics: baby boomers, seniors, divorce, dementia, MassHealth planning, Estate Planning

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