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For Many With Disabilities, Special Education Leads to Jail
October 30, 2014
When the special education system fails youth and they end up in jail, many stay there for years or decades. The vast majority of adults in American prisons have a disability, according to a 1997 Bureau of Justice Statistics survey. Data hasn’t been updated since, but experts attribute the high percentage of individuals with disabilities in the nation’s bloated prison population — which has grown 700 percent since 1970 — in part to deep problems in the education of children with special needs.
Full Story.

VA Disability Claims Soar
October 29, 2014
Requests for disability pay by veterans have ballooned during the past five years, overloading many doctors who evaluate the claims and increasing the possibility of fraud, according to current and former VA staff and government watchdogs.
Full Story.

3 Social Security Myths Debunked
October 28, 2014
On its face, Social Security seems like a simple program. Workers pay Social Security taxes into the system that go to pay current retiree and disability benefits, with the expectation that, when they retire, they'll get Social Security benefits funded by taxes paid by younger workers.
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ALS Patients Face Loss of Medicare Coverage for Devices Used to Help Speech
October 27, 2014
Starting Dec. 1, people with ALS — a disease that impairs motor function so people often can’t talk or even move — could lose access to technological advances that help them communicate, a change that is the result of a federal review of what Medicare can cover.
Full Story.

Raise Pay for Home-Care Aides? Disability-Rights Groups Say No Way
October 24, 2014
Republicans crowed in early October when the Department of Labor said it planned to hold off enforcing a new regulation requiring home-care workers who look after elderly and disabled people to be paid minimum wage, overtime, and travel time. “The fact that the department plans to ignore its own rule after it goes into effect should be proof enough that it should be scrapped altogether,” Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee said in a statement after the department announced the delay.
Full Story.

Finance Lab: They Have a Pension, Long-Term Care Insurance and Savings. But Is It Enough?
October 23, 2014
The Washington Post recently asked readers about their financial planning for retirement and promised to have experts review readers’ plans and offer advice.
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Social Security Benefits to Go Up By 1.7 Percent
October 22, 2014
Millions of older Americans who rely on federal benefits will get a 1.7 percent increase in their monthly payments next year, the government announced.
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7 Things to Review During Medicare Open Enrollment
October 21, 2014
Medicare beneficiaries will get an opportunity to make changes to their Medicare Part D coverage between Oct. 15 and Dec. 7, 2014. Many retirees will experience premium increases, changes in covered drugs and new cost-sharing requirements if they don’t switch plans. Here’s what you should review during the annual open enrollment period so you can select a new prescription drug plan if necessary.
Full Story.

Seniors Lose Average of $30,000 to Financial Scammers
October 20, 2014
According to a recent survey of 2,000 seniors and other adults by Allianz Life Insurance Co., elderly victims reported losing an average of $30,000, while some suffered losses of more than $100,000.
Full Story.

An Alzheimer’s Complication: Some Care May Not Be Covered by Medicare
October 17, 2014
Even though nearly 50 million people in the U.S. rely on Medicare to help pay for their health care, millions of older people who have Alzheimer’s disease may find that the insurance comes up short when they need it most – when they need long-term care.
Full Story.

Updates



Latest NAELA Advocacy Update
Read more about NAELA's public policy and advocacy efforts in the October newsletter. (October 27, 2014)

NAELA Calls for Paying Doctors to Discuss Advanced Care Planning
NAELA called for Medicare to pay doctors for the time they spend with their patients discussing advanced care planning in a letter sent to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). See press release.

NAELA Aids Win for Children With Disabilities of Retired New Jersey Police and Firefighters
The New Jersey supreme court’s decision to allow children with disabilities of retired police and firefighters to receive their parent’s survivor benefits without the risk of losing public assistance was in part due to the assistance of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) and NAELA members. See press release. (October 16, 2014)

NAELA Celebrates National Special Needs Law Month in October
NAELA members will be celebrating with public seminars, special living will days, Special Needs Law clinics, and other activities designed to educate the public. See press release. (September 30, 2014)

NAELA Member Featured in USA Today
Jean Galloway Ball, CELA, CAP,
was featured in the USA Today story, "Nonagenarian newlyweds spark legal controversy." (September 18, 2014)

Senate Hearing Sheds Light on Economic Challenges of Persons with Special Needs
The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) commends the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee for holding a hearing and issuing a report today on an important, often overlooked story: the economic plight of people with disabilities. See press release. (September 18, 2014)

NAELA Aids Win Allowing Survivor Benefit Plans to Pay Into Special Needs Trusts
The Supreme Court of New Jersey held that a Police and Firemen’s Retirement System survivor benefits can get assigned to a first-party special needs trust. The New Jersey Chapter of NAELA, along with the Special Needs Alliance and the Guardianship Association of New Jersey, submitted amicus certiorari to support this contention. The New Jersey Supreme Court holding will give ammunition in NAELA’s fight to allow military personnel the right to assign a survivor benefit plan to a special needs trust. (September 12, 2014)

NAELA Celebrates Americans with Disabilities Act Anniversary
NAELA celebrates the 24th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26, 2014. See press release. (July 21, 2014)

GAO Report “Starting Point” for Long-Term Care Reform
A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report examining the ways people become financially eligible for Medicaid long-term care coverage should be a starting point for an urgent review of the long-term care crises that millions of Americans and their families are facing, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) said today. See press release. (June 25, 2014)

NAELA Foundation Awards $25,000 Grant to Center for Medicare Advocacy
The NAELA Foundation awarded $25,000 to the Center for Medicare Advocacy (CMA) to support litigation to prevent erroneous denial of Medicare coverage, provide access for beneficiaries to an effective appeals system and, therefore, access to Medicare coverage and necessary health care. See press release. (June 6, 2014)

Marketing Inappropriately to NAELA Members

NAELA has a strict policy of NOT selling our member contact email information. To read more about a marketing email some members may have received see here.