Press Release - New Elder Law Department
Local solicitors Arnison Heelis have announced the opening of a specialist Elder Law department trading under the name of ‘Securing Your Future’. Director Trevor Price stated: ‘We have been working in this area for many years and it is very apparent not only that there is a growing need for specialist help but also that a significant part of that need is not particularly well met. We are looking to provide a specialist service focussing on addressing those needs’. The new department is based in new offices at Penrith previously occupied by Arnison Heelis Estate Agents who have moved to new premises on the other side of King Street. There is private parking immediately outside for clients who can access the offices without having to go up any steps. The practice also regularly undertakes home and hospital visits if these are needed. Arnison Heelis currently have four solicitors, one legal executive and a further three support staff working in this area of law at offices in Penrith and Appleby.
The growing demand for support for the elderly has been fuelled by better health care and people living longer lives, by rising house prices and by the breakdown of traditional family structures which means that often children live in other parts of the country or overseas and are unable to help their loved ones as they get older. Unfortunately, in some cases this can lead to sub-standard care, exploitation and abuse. The problem can be made worse because many people do not plan for the later stages of their life and prefer not to think about what will happen to them as they get older.
Trevor Price states: ‘All too frequently the elderly are seen as a problem. We want to change that mind set. In many cultures the old are respected for their wisdom and experience and describing them as elders rather than ‘the elderly’ is a good starting point as it implies respect’.
He states that essentially the work of his practice falls into two main areas. The first is dealing with the consequences of old age which can include the inability to make decisions, care funding and financial abuse. The second area is much more proactive and essentially involves having a plan. It means ensuring that you have all the legal documents in place to get you what you want and that you have considered the pitfalls that may face someone in later life and ways to avoid them if possible or at least to mitigate them. Further details are given in the Securing Your Future section of the Arnison Heelis website.
Trevor is a member of Solicitors for the Elderly which is a national association of independent lawyers who specialise in elder client law. As specialists, SFE members are also trained in older client care so that they are able to take into account any difficulties both mental and physical which can affect older and vulnerable clients and are aware of the health and social problems that people may face.