Elder Law: A Shoulder to Lean On

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Talking Elder Law with GrandmaLinda Loope’s hard working mother, Hilda, never wanted anyone to worry about her.

Born in Montgomery County, Hilda grew up during the Depression, during which her family often changed locations. Throughout her husband’s 42 years with the Norfolk and Western Railroad, their family experienced setbacks with company layoffs and strikes, leading Hilda to work part time in retail customer service to help with finances. When her husband passed away in 1973, she worked even harder to support her two children.

But her strong and self-reliant attitude could not stop her eldest daughter from assisting Hilda in one of her most important life changes. When it was decided that Linda’s mother would be moving to an assisted living home, her house of 55 years needed to be sold.

“It was very hard for her to leave her home, but it is the best thing that could have happened at this point in her life,” said Linda, “And if not for ElderLife Financial Services, it would have been much harder for me to make it happen.”

While Linda needed help getting the house ready to sell, she wanted to make sure her mom would be taken care of. When she and her husband visited Loyalton of Roanoke to complete the paperwork for her mother’s admission, they were referred to ElderLife. Linda found it was exactly what she needed to tide her family over until the house was ready.

“I did not know that such a service was even available,” said Linda, who had taken on the full responsibility of caring for her mother and assumed the role as her Power of Attorney. Aside from the stress of this responsibility, Linda was also an administrative assistant at a local church and has two grown children.

“ElderLife’s services are wonderful for folks who are going through the trauma of moving a parent into assisted living and trying to make sure they will be financially secure while getting everything settled.”

For Linda, the process turned out to be quite simple. She corresponded with Farrell Didio, the director of Family Relations, over the phone and internet.

“Farrell was always willing to listen as I tried to figure things out and was always there if I had any concerns or questions,” she said.

According to Linda, the staff made sure that payments were made to Loyalton on time and she never felt any pressure in terms of when the house would be sold.

“In fact, I was told that if necessary, I could extend the time of the loan if the house didn’t sell in the allotted time,” she said, “Much to our delight, we put the house on the market and it sold in less than a week.”

Although she no longer needs assistance from ElderLife, Linda said Farrell has called many times to check in and see how her mother is doing.

“Not only are they helpful, but they are also very efficient and trustworthy,” she said, “They have a real compassion for the elderly, their families and what it takes to do all of the things that need to be done.”

To this day, Linda recommends this service to others, as she feels it is extremely necessary for those who do not have a lot of money and depend on the sale of their homes as a means for entering a facility.

“I am just very thankful for them,” she said.

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