Anything that involves money, assets, and taxes warrants full attention. In the context of Estate Planning, expert legal help is indispensable.
Lawyers are trained in law school to be general practitioners. Unlike physicians, there is no requirement for internship or residency before we can sell our services to the public. To practice law in Florida, a lawyer needs only to graduate from an accredited law school and pass the Bar Exam.
Estate planning involves state statutory and case law, taxes, and other related matters. Elder Law planning involves further knowledge of Federal Social Security law, Veteran’s Benefits, Medicaid, and agency rulings. It is advisable to hire a lawyer who has the knowledge and expertise and the credentials to back it up.
Florida Bar’s Highest Standards
Florida Bar Board Certified Elder Law Attorneys have met The Florida Bar’s highest standards for special knowledge, skills and proficiency in the practice of law. The Board certification’s stringent requirements give the public objective standards by which to evaluate attorneys. When you hire a board certified attorney, you are represented by a lawyer who has:
• Practiced Law for at least 5 years
• Been substantially involved in the specialty of elder law 40% or more during the 3 years immediately preceding application
• Been evaluated for competency and professionalism by peers in the legal field
• Completed 60 hours of continuing legal education within the 3 years immediately preceding application
• Passed a full day written examination demonstrating knowledge, skills, and proficiency in the field of elder law to justify the representation of special competence in this are to the profession and public
Debra G. Simms is a Florida Bar Board Certified Elder Law Attorney. Her practice areas include: Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Advance Medical Directives, Probate, Guardianship, Medicaid Planning.