Online LL.M. in Elder Law

Elder Law LL.M. Required Courses

LAW 8000AGING AND THE LAW3
LAW 8050LONG TERM CARE PLANNING 13
LAW 8025ESTATE&GIFT TX PLAN/ELD CLIENT3
LAW 8030ETHICS IN THE PRACT OF ELDR LW3
LAW 8035GUARDIANSHIPS & ALTERNATIVES3
LAW 8055RETIREMENT PLANNING3
LAW 8070SELECT TOPICS IN ELDER LAW1
Total Credits19

Elder Law LL.M. Elective Courses

Select six (6) credit hours from the following electives:
LAW 8010TAX FOR ELDER LAW ATTORNEYS3
LAW 8020DISABILITY LAW-LLM ELDER LW3
LAW 8040GOVT & PRIVATE HEALTH BENEFITS (3 credits)3
LAW 8049LAW, AGING & MENTAL HEALTH (3 credits)3
LAW 8047REPRESENTING CLIENTS WHO ARE ELDERLY OR HAVE SPECIAL NEEDS (3 credits)3
LAW 8090VETERANS BENEFITS-LLM ELDER LW (3 credits)3
1

Long-Term Care Planning is required, but with the approval of the Director of the LL.M. in Elder Law, Disability Law may be substituted (effective Fall semester 2012).

By taking a full course load (three courses), degree-seeking students should complete the requirements for the LL.M. degree within three semesters (fall, spring and fall). Candidates must satisfactorily complete 25 hours of academic credit, and will take no more than three classes per semester. Most classes are three credits. Students interested in taking fewer classes each semester must receive approval from the program director and will require additional semesters to complete the degree.

LAW 8000. AGING AND THE LAW. 3 Credits.

This course examines various issues in elder law, including the psychology and physiology of aging. Topics include autonomy, surrogate decision-making, elder abuse, ethics, aging in place, and planning for long-term care, ageism, discrimination, the criminal justice system, and interdisciplinary approaches to client representation.

LAW 8010. TAX FOR ELDER LAW ATTORNEYS. 3 Credits.

This course will include an overview of basic fundamental tax principles necessary for practice in a variety of other legal fields - individual tax planning, family law, estate planning, real property taxation, and business planning - with a special emphasis on tax provisions and principles particularly relevant to elderly clients. Topics will include the definition of gross income, with emphasis on exclusions for social security recipients, the taxation of health care, with emphasis on tax incentives for health savings and deductions/credits for extraordinary health care expenses, the definition of the "family" for tax purposes as that definition relates to elderly taxpayers who provide support for adult children and grandchildren, tuition and higher education benefits, with emphasis on lifetime learning credits and costs associated with second careers and payment of grandchildren expenses, retirement savings, the exclusion of gain from the sale of principal residence, taxation of annuities and life insurance, and planning for post-death events (e.g., bequests, devises, and inheritances). Overall, the course will survey tax provisions with special relevance to elder law. Students will be allowed to suggest specific topics relevant to their own elder law practice (if any). Evaluation will be based on a final exam and completion of three practical problems presented at the one third, two third and final third portion of the course.

LAW 8020. DISABILITY LAW-LLM ELDER LW. 3 Credits.

This course will cover the foundations of Special Needs and Disability Law: the issues, laws and regulations concerning individuals with disabilities, including access, employment, education, services and benefits, civil rights, discrimination, Social Security Disability, and the hearings and appeals process. (Note: Long-Term Care Planning is required, but with approval of the Director of the LL.M. in Elder law, Disability Law may be substituted.).

LAW 8025. ESTATE&GIFT TX PLAN/ELD CLIENT. 3 Credits.

This course examines the federal transfer tax system, and its effects on various estate planning arrangements, including joint tenancies, reserved life estates, durable powers of attorney, various types of trusts (including special needs trusts) and contractual arrangements for the transfer of wealth. Although the course will examine the basic planning and gifting concepts used for estates of all sizes, the focus will be on the gift and estate planning and tax provisions for the typical elder law client.

LAW 8030. ETHICS IN THE PRACT OF ELDR LW. 3 Credits.

This course reviews the ethical issues frequently presented to an attorney representing people who are older or disabled through an examination of the Model Rules and comments, Restatements, and other authorities. Issues covered include "who is the client?", loyalty, confidentiality, conflicts of interest, clients with diminished capacity, former clients, prospective clients, joint representation, and the lawyer's role as counselor.

LAW 8040. GOVT & PRIVATE HEALTH BENEFITS. 3 Credits.

This course examines the various benefits plans provided by private and governmental health plans, including Medicare and Medicaid programs, managed care plans, regulation and access, policy issues and recent developments.

LAW 8035. GUARDIANSHIPS & ALTERNATIVES. 3 Credits.

This course examines the causes of incapacity, behaviors of those with dementia, aphasia, etc., alternatives to guardianship for property and health care decisions (durable power of attorney, property management tactics as alternatives, advance directives), capacity assessments, the process of declaring a person incapacitated, selection and appointment of a guardian, administration, closing of a guardianship, and mediation.

LAW 8048. INTRODUCTION TO ELDER LAW. 3 Credits.

This course is for those LLM students who have limited or no experience in Elder Law and is a condition of admission. This introductory course is a survey of all of the unique areas of elder law. The emphasis is on introducing the student to the issues and vocabulary of elder law. Subjects include Guardianship, Government Benefits; Estate Planning and Ethics. Exam, 3 credits.

LAW 8049. LAW, AGING & MENTAL HEALTH. 3 Credits.

This course examines the issues, laws and programs concerning clients with mental health issues. Discussions will cover the various legal procedures and the alternatives for planning and working with clients and their families.

LAW 8050. LONG TERM CARE PLANNING. 3 Credits.

This course examines the issues concerning long term care, including planning for long-term care, services, paying for care, including long-term care insurance, provisions of services including in-home and institutional care and the policies concerning long term care.

LAW 8047. REPRESENTING CLIENTS WHO ARE ELDERLY OR HAVE SPECIAL NEEDS. 3 Credits.

This course examines the substantive law and strategies in representing people who are elderly or who have special needs including Medicaid, Guardianship litigation, Probate litigation, SSD Appeals. A number of nationally known experts in subject matter areas are guest lectures. The course has a skills exercise and an exam.

LAW 8055. RETIREMENT PLANNING. 3 Credits.

This course examines institutional forms of retirement planning, including family and community support, employer-sponsored pension plans, and personal savings in the form of tangible and intangible assets. The course also looks at the federal income tax consequences of pension plan distributions, spousal rights and benefits under employer-sponsored pension plans, employer and third-party service provider fiduciary duties and fiduciary liability issues, and estate planning strategies related to retirement savings.

LAW 8070. SELECT TOPICS IN ELDER LAW. 1 Credit.

This three-day in person course is in conjunction with the Annual Special Needs Trust conference. Students attend two days of the conference and a third day on campus, covering issues that are currently being discussed and debated in the elder law profession as a whole. Exam; 1 credit.

LAW 8090. VETERANS BENEFITS-LLM ELDER LW. 3 Credits.

This course examines the issues that arise for veterans regarding the application, grant, and denial of benefits within the Department of Veterans Affairs. The course will cover the various programs and benefits available, eligibility for programs and services, and the hearings and appeals process.

Please note: Course descriptions are intended to be only a general summary of course content.