» Consumer Debt Unit Helping Elderly Manage Bills, Notes Elder Law Attorney

Consumer Debt Unit Helping Elderly Manage Bills, Notes Elder Law Attorney

Bloomfield Hills, MI (Law Firm Newswire) May 8, 2013 – A Maine-based group is helping local seniors pay off debt.

A nonprofit group based in Maine, Legal Services for the Elderly (LSE), has announced that it has formed a Consumer Debt Unit within its organization to help clients pay off outstanding debt. As of 2009, LSE noted an increase of more than 25 percent of elderly clients who were struggling to manage their debt burden, a majority of whom used to be able to meet their bills every month and now cannot.

“The truth is, older Americans who depend on Social Security benefits or disability checks to meet their bills and who can no longer work or who cannot find work, have no way to repay their debt,” commented Michigan elder law attorney Christopher J. Berry.

There are multiple factors that have led to the consumer debt increase for the elderly, not just in Maine, but nationwide, but Maine has a higher-than-average rate of poverty among the elderly population. Price hikes for food, fuel and health care promoted an increase in the use of credit cards with inflated interest rates. The loss of a spouse, a medical issue, and the use of credit cards to pay for household items, and even the use of credit cards by other family members or friends have all been reported to contribute to a debt load which became unmanageable, seniors reported. While health care bills continue to be the leading factor contributing to senior debt, living on a fixed income often means that bills can never be paid in full.

The Legal Services for the Elderly Consumer Debt Unit is being watched by elder care advocates to see if it works successfully as a model for other debt units to be launched throughout the state. Seniors work with staff to assess their level of debt, work out a budget, and contact creditors, designing a pay-back system or taking necessary steps to avoid collection. The Unit receives funding from the Administration on Aging in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which helps pay for an on-staff elder law attorney and a paralegal.

Learn more at http://www.michiganelderlawattorney.com/

The Elder Care Firm of Christopher J. Berry
2550 S Telegraph Rd.
Ste 255
Bloomfield Hills, MI 48302
Local: 248.481.4000
Toll free: 855-41-Elder (855-413-5337)



  • Philip Seymour Hoffman Leaves his Children Zilch…$35Million to his Partner
    Phillip Seymour Hoffman died at the young age of 46, with three children, all under the age of 11.  With his estimated $35 million fortune in his estate, he made the bold decision to disinherit his children, leaving the bulk of his $35 million to his partner, Mimi O’Donnell, according to an article on Today.com. […]
  • Is your Michigan Caregiver for Your Senior a Felon?
    According to a disturbing article in the Daily Reporter, convicted felons are being paid to take care of our Michigan seniors, according to a staffer at the Area Agency on Aging. Melissa Franklin of the Area Agency on Aging states, “We have multiple care providers now who are on the sex offender registry.  There is […]
  • BIG NEWS: Supreme Court Holds Inherited IRAs are Not Protected Anymore
    In the big news department, the Supreme Court held in Clark v. Rameker that inherited IRA’s are not asset protected.  There were differing opinions on whether an inherited IRA would be protected against bankruptcy, however it is now clear that they are not. Here’s the facts, at death Ms. Heffrom owned an IRA worth about […]
  • Your Free Five Wishes Medical Power of Attorney Ain’t No Good.
    In my Michigan estate planning practice, I’ve had a ton of clients and financial planners bring up the Five Wishes as a way to handle end of life decisions.  Everyone over the age of 18 in Michigan needs advanced directives (sometimes called medical powers of attorney).  In Michigan we call these documents Patient Advocate Designations. […]

See other news sources publishing this article. BETA | Tags: , , , , ,



Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required