Elder Law and Disability Planning

ThompsonMcMullan’s elder law practice encompasses all aspects of planning for and representation of elderly and disabled clients. We provide counsel and seasoned representation in guardianship and conservatorship proceedings, including judicial estate planning needed to establish trusts and complete transfers for tax and public benefits objectives. We have substantial experience in advising both institutional trust departments and individual clients regarding long term care issues, with special emphasis on protecting public entitlements rights for elderly, incapacitated and disabled persons. Our experience in this practice area includes: hospital and nursing home representation for discharge and admission of incapacitated adults; adult guardianships and conservatorships; family representation in civil commitment and psychiatric medication proceedings; special needs estate planning for Medicaid and disability recipients; Medicaid Special Needs Trusts / Medicare set aside arrangements in personal injury and worker compensation litigation; and Medicaid appeals. We are members of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc. and a member of the Special Needs Alliance.

Our experience in this practice area includes:

  • Hospital and nursing home representation for discharge and admission of incapacitated adults;
  • Adult guardianships and conservatorships;
  • Family representation in civil commitment and psychiatric medication proceedings;
  • Special needs estate planning for Medicaid and Disability recipients;
  • Medicaid Special Needs Trusts / Medicare set aside arrangements in personal injury and Worker Compensation litigation; and
  • Medicaid and Social Security appeals.

Members of the Elder Law practice include:

R. Shawn Majette, practice manager
Paul G. Izzo
Andrea J. Yoak
Joley L. Eason

The following topics fall within our area of expertise in this practice area:

  • Representation in all aspects of guardianship and conservatorship proceedings (both as counsel and as guardian ad litem) in the Circuit Courts of Virginia, including acting as court appointed guardian and conservator in appropriate cases;
  • Protecting the rights of nursing home residents;
  • Creative uses of “special needs” trusts sheltering assets for Medicaid and other public benefits programs (often in personal injury and decedents’ estate cases);
  • Protecting entitlements such as Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid;
  • Counseling professionals before state licensing boards;
  • Advising family members regarding surrogate decision-making under health-care advance directives; and
  • Advising and representing family members in obtaining involuntary mental health treatment for loved ones under Virginia statutes governing civil commitment, court ordered psychiatric medication, and court ordered electro-convulsive therapy.

A growing part of the elder law practice involves aggressive representation of impaired or disabled individuals who have fallen victim to financial abuse and exploitation. We have an impressive track record of recovering misappropriated property on behalf of vulnerable citizens and creating trusts and agency relationships (such as a durable power of attorney) to ward against future victimization.

ThompsonMcMullan recognizes that this practice area is critical to an aging population, and is dedicated to providing timely and expert advice as to all issues affecting the elderly and disabled.

Related Resources

Helpful Links

Social Security Administration and Supplemental Security Income for the Aged, Blind, and Disabled

Guardianship Resources

Civil Commitment