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Planning with Purpose: Legal Basics for LGBT Elders

June 2009 | National Center for Lesbian Rights, Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE)

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“The legal landscape for LGBT couples in the area of law we call ‘relationship recognition’ is changing rapidly… LGBT elders must be aware of how both federal and state laws will treat your relationship.”

Provides basic information about select areas of the law that are important to LGBT elders, especially individuals and couples who are age 55 and over. This guide includes information about issues related to relationship recognition, finances, health care, long term care, Medicare and Medicaid, planning for the care of minor or disabled children, inheritance, elder abuse, and discrimination against LGBT elders. It covers many areas where rights, benefits, and protections are generally provided to heterosexual people based on spousal status, but are denied to same-sex couples, even if married or in other legal unions. It also highlights issues unique to transgender elders.


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