Client Success Stories - From Homeless to Home

**Names have been changed and details have been made more general to protect the privacy of our clients. **  

When Jerry, an elderly, retired public servant who suffers from memory issues, received a foreclosure notice on his house, he came to his local legal aid for help. His checks had begun to bounce, and he could not afford food, water, or electricity. He was worried about how he would care for himself in his senior years. Upon review of his case, the Tennessee Senior Law Alliance (TSLA) attorney helping Jerry found that he was running out of money because his disability pension had been canceled.  

Jerry had been living in Tennessee alone without any friends or family. Living in confusion and isolation, Jerry did not send in the necessary paperwork to continue getting his pension. In addition to losing the pension benefit, he also lost his health benefits. Jerry was now left with little to no income and no way to pay for his home, his healthcare, or his groceries.  

The TSLA attorney immediately began by helping him apply for SNAP benefits to assist with his grocery costs and finding a community organization that could temporarily help cover his utility costs. After addressing these issues, the attorney focused on helping Jerry cover his healthcare costs and get his pension restarted. The attorney assisted Jerry in applying for a Medicare Savings Program that helped Jerry pay for medical premiums, deductibles, and copays. Once the attorney knew that Jerry’s immediate needs were covered, she worked on getting his pension back by connecting him with an organization that specializes in helping seniors sort through benefit problems. 

Jerry was finally on his way to being financially stable and could return to his normal life. The attorney worried about Jerry living in isolation and was concerned that his memory issues would lead to him forgetting to reapply for his benefits again in the future. With Jerry’s permission, the TSLA attorney contacted Jerry’s family from out of state, who did not know about his memory loss. After working with Jerry and his family, the attorney helped him establish a Power of Attorney to give his family the opportunity to help him make decisions and manage his finances.  

After reconnecting with his family, Jerry moved to be closer to them. Jerry is now living out his senior years with the financial stability to support himself surrounded by family and loved ones.

Posted: June 30, 2020