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Elderlaw Project

Observations & Issues

The number of seniors nationwide is growing as the first wave of baby boomers enter their 60s, and in New York City those seniors are increasingly minorities and immigrants, many of whom are living at or below the poverty level. The median income for a single senior citizen in the city is $10,450 a year, and the poverty rate among elderly citizens is twice the national average.

For seniors, the necessity of securing housing, food and prescription drugs has become an extreme challenge. Unfortunately, many of New York's seniors are isolated and lack the financial resources to obtain necessary legal help. As a result, pro bono legal assistance, with important processes such as the writing of a will or seeking government benefits, can make a significant difference in the lives of the elderly and their families.