National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) is a community of attorneys who specialize in handling legal issues affecting people as they age and those with special needs. We believe in the importance of continuing legal education, advocacy and examining public policy issues in our mission to enhance the quality of life for older adults and persons with disabilities.

Find an Attorney  Join NAELA

Announcements 

We are proud to announce that through NJ NAELA’s advocacy, the NJ Supreme Court has relaxed R. 1:21-12 to provide an Exemption from the Madden v. Delran, 126 N.J. 591 (1992) pro bono requirements.  
NJ NAELA's response to the COVID-19 Crisis
April 9th Response Letter
(Adobe PDF File)
Special Order 4/8/20
(Adobe PDF File)

News

 Social Security Celebrates 86th Anniversary (8/12/2021) 
   — President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act in 1935, providing economic security for workers when they retired. Today, Social Security provides benefits to millions of retirees, people with disabilities, and their families.

August 12, 2021 
Contact: Abby Matienzo, Communications Manager
       703-349-1923

Social Security Celebrates 86th Anniversary
Attorneys Serving Older Americans and People with Disabilities Proudly Serve Beneficiaries of Longtime Public Benefits Programs

Washington, DC — President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act in 1935, providing economic security for workers when they retired. Today, Social Security provides benefits to millions of retirees, people with disabilities, and their families. Learn more about Social Security statistics with their monthly snapshot.

National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) member attorneys are well-equipped to provide guidance in navigating the complexities of Social Security, Social Security Disability, Medicare, Medicaid, and much more,” said NAELA President Letha Sgritta McDowell, CELA, CAP.

Learn more about how elder and special needs law attorneys can assist you.

Find an elder and special needs law attorney in your area using NAELA’s Member Directory.

About NAELA
Members of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) are attorneys who are experienced and trained in working with the legal problems of aging Americans and individuals of all ages with disabilities. Upon joining, NAELA member attorneys agree to adhere to the NAELA Aspirational Standards. Established in 1987, NAELA is a non-profit association that assists lawyers, bar organizations, and others. The mission of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys is to educate, inspire, serve, and provide community to attorneys with practices in elder and special needs law. NAELA currently has members across the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit NAELA.org, or to locate a NAELA member attorney in your area, visit NAELA.org/findlawyer.

# # #


 Now Accepting Powley Elder Law Award Nominations (8/8/2021) 
   Nomination deadline: May 28, 2021

The Powley Elder Law Award

This award is presented to a NAELA member who has demonstrated a commitment to promote, in the minds of the general public, a greater understanding of the rights and needs of older Americans and people with special needs and of how elder law attorneys advocate for those rights. The award is established in the memory of Wes and Helen Powley, grandparents of NAELA member Tim Takacs. Both Wes and Helen were active in civic affairs for all of their lives, and Wes practiced dentistry well into his 80s. The award is funded by a grant from the Takacs Family Foundation.

Submit a nomination for the next award recipient by May 28, 2021.  Download the form below.

Powley Award Recipients

2019 Leonard Berg
2018 Debra Rahmin Silberstein
2017 Patricia Sitchler, CELA
2016 Keith Huffman, Esq.
2015 H. Amos Goodall, CELA
2014 Marielle Hazen, CELA
2013 Reginald Turnbull, CELA
2012 Janet L. Lowder, CELA
2011 Patricia Harrison, Esq.
2010 Eric Carlson, Esq.
2009 Alfred "Chip" Chiplin, Esq.
2008 Martha Brown, CELA, CAP
2007 Stephen W. Dale, Esq.
2006 Lynn Campisi, CELA
2005 Patricia K. Dudek, Esq., CAP
2004 Doris Hawks, Esq. CAP
2003 Mary Alice Jackson, Esq.
2002 John J.Ford, Esq.
2001 Fay Blix, CELA, CAP
2000 Edward W. Long, Esq.


 NAELA Celebrates Medicare and Medicaid Anniversary 2021 (7/29/2021) 
   When President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law on July 30, 1965, he stated, “No longer will older Americans be denied the healing miracle of modern medicine. No longer will illness crush and destroy the savings they have so ca

July 30, 2021 
Contact: Abby Matienzo, Communications Manager
       703-349-1923

NAELA Celebrates Medicare and Medicaid Anniversary


Washington, DC — When President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law on July 30, 1965, he stated, “No longer will older Americans be denied the healing miracle of modern medicine. No longer will illness crush and destroy the savings they have so carefully put away over a lifetime so they might enjoy dignity in their later years. No longer will young families see their own incomes, and their own hopes, eaten away simply because they are carrying out their deep moral obligations.”

“Medicare and Medicaid have played a critical role in supporting the communities that NAELA members serve – older adults and people with disabilities. NAELA member attorneys are proud to advocate for legislation that supports these programs and provide help in navigating these programs,” said NAELA President Letha Sgritta McDowell, CELA, CAP.

Learn more about questions and answers when looking for an elder and special needs law attorney.

Find an elder and special needs law attorney in your area using NAELA’s Member Directory.

About NAELA
Members of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) are attorneys who are experienced and trained in working with the legal problems of aging Americans and individuals of all ages with disabilities. Upon joining, NAELA member attorneys agree to adhere to the NAELA Aspirational Standards. Established in 1987, NAELA is a non-profit association that assists lawyers, bar organizations, and others. The mission of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys is to educate, inspire, serve, and provide community to attorneys with practices in elder and special needs law. NAELA currently has members across the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit NAELA.org, or to locate a NAELA member attorney in your area, visit NAELA.org/findlawyer.

# # #


 NAELA Celebrates Americans with Disabilities Act Anniversary 2021 (7/20/2021) 
   NAELA celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26.

July 20, 2021 
Contact: Abby Matienzo, Communications Manager
       703-349-1923

NAELA Celebrates Americans with Disabilities Act Anniversary


Washington, DC — The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26. Congress enacted the ADA “to provide a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities.” The U.S. Department of Labor states that the ADA “prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in several areas, including employment, transportation, public accommodations, communications, and access to state and local government’ programs and services.

NAELA member attorneys serve older adults, people with disabilities, and their families. As part of the Disability and Aging Collaborative, NAELA helped draft recommendations for a fourth piece of COVID-19 legislation. These recommendations included increasing the Medicaid Federal Medical Assistance Percentages (FMAP) match beyond the 6.2 percent bump in April 2020 and passing the Coronavirus Relief for Seniors and People with Disabilities Act (H.R. 6305, S. 3544), which includes grants to support Direct Support Professional (DSP) and Home Health Workforce and to support aging adults and people with disabilities in their homes and communities.

“As the needs of people with disabilities evolves, NAELA member attorneys are always right there supporting legislation aiming the enhance their quality of life,” said NAELA President Letha Sgritta McDowell, CELA, CAP.

Find an elder and special needs law attorney in your area using NAELA’s Member Directory.

About NAELA
Members of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) are attorneys who are experienced and trained in working with the legal problems of aging Americans and individuals of all ages with disabilities. Upon joining, NAELA member attorneys agree to adhere to the NAELA Aspirational Standards. Established in 1987, NAELA is a non-profit association that assists lawyers, bar organizations, and others. The mission of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys is to educate, inspire, serve, and provide community to attorneys with practices in elder and special needs law. NAELA currently has members across the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit NAELA.org, or to locate a NAELA member attorney in your area, visit NAELA.org/findlawyer.

# # #


Featured Events

JOIN US

Be part of an organization that inspires, empowers and values elder law and special needs planning attorneys.
JOIN NOW

NAELA Foundation

Help us support litigation that establishes good legal precedent in matters of critical importance to older Americans and people with special needs
Give Now
Raymond J. Falcon, Jr.

Featured Member

Raymond J. Falcon, Jr.

Estate planning, probate, and guardianship, with a special concentration on special needs planning; special needs settlement planning; business succession planning for closely-held businesses.
FIND AN ATTORNEY