Approximately 150,000 seniors age 60 and up reside in Mecklenburg county. However, nearly 27% of seniors live with incomes under 200% of the federal poverty level. Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy is dedicated to improving the quality of life for Mecklenburg County’s elderly population by helping them protect themselves from exploitation and aiding them in critical legal matters.
Our services focus on:
- Empowering older people in Mecklenburg County through education and legal representation, thus allowing them to remain self-sufficient, their property unencumbered and their finances protected
- Preventing and protecting older people from becoming victims of financial exploitation and abuses such as predatory lending and fraud
- Improving quality of life for older people
- Simple wills, powers of attorney and advance directives
- Power of Attorney Revocations
- Consumer and housing issues, including home foreclosures, predatory lending practices, exploitation and unfair debt collection practices
- Government benefits, including Medicaid and Medicare, Food Stamps, Social Security and SSI
- Access to health care and issues regarding nursing homes, assisted living and in-home services
The program represents residents of Mecklenburg County who are 60 years of age or older regardless of income and assets (with the exception of consumer, housing and benefits issues, which are subject to income eligibility). The program’s focus is to protect the legal rights of low-income elderly people who are unable to afford legal representation.
Legal Services for the Elderly conducts community outreach and provides community legal education, including presentations and speaking engagements, to senior citizens and to the staff of other agencies. The program works regularly with the Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Senior Centers, the Mecklenburg County Council on Aging, North Carolina’s Ombudsman Program, and other agencies serving the elderly.
Volunteers and training
Legal Services for the Elderly relies extensively on volunteer attorneys to represent clients whose cases have been evaluated and accepted. The program also provides continuing legal education and training programs for volunteer attorneys and attorneys who volunteer with other low-income taxpayer clinics.