Attorney Brett Howell was the first Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA) in Genesee County. In order to become a CELA, Brett completed a full-day exam and had to show that he specifically focused on special needs and elder law. The criteria to become a CELA is listed below as taken from the National Elder Law Foundation website:
- Licensure – Attorney must be licensed to practice law in at least one state or the District of Columbia
- Practice – Attorney must have practiced law during the five years preceding theirapplication and must still be practicing law.
- Integrity/Good Standing – Attorney must be a member in good standing of the bars in all places in which they are licensed.
- Substantial Involvement – Attorney must have spent an average of at least 16 hours per week practicing elder law during the three years preceding their application. In addition, they must have handled at least 60 elder law matters during those three years with a specified distribution among legal subjects as defined by the Foundation.
- Continuing Legal Education – Attorney must have participated in at least 45 hours of continuing legal education in elder law during the preceding three years.
- Peer Review/Professional References – Attorney must submit the names of five references from attorneys familiar with their competence and qualifications in elder law. These persons must themselves satisfy specified criteria.
- Examination – Attorney must pass a full-daycertification
Choosing a Certified Elder Law Attorney is a wise decision. An attorney who has been certified by the National Elder Law Foundation has shown that they have the qualifications, and desire to provide excellent legal care.
There are about 400 Certified Elder Law Attorneys across the country. There is a CELA in almost every state and major city making it possible for you to find a Certified Elder Law Attorney.