the website of Lisa Nachmias Davis
Davis O'Sullivan & Priest LLC, Attorneys at Law

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 a comprehensive, consumer-oriented website maintained by Connecticut Legal Services (which includes my articles).


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CONSUMER LINKS and QUICKIE INFO PAGE  - some things updated January 24, 2017 (it's free, not fancy!)
You can also visit my lawyers' links page for forms, statutes, legal stuff for professionals.

Best new thing in the world today (not that new) (thanks Rachel) is that you can
Then to reduce font size again hit CTRL and "-" key.  Note: you'll be enlarging for all
websites you visit, not just this one -- it stays on til you turn it off!

Click for
Lawyer's links
Click for
Click for
elder law page

Click for
General Info
Click for
Nursing Homes
Click for
Assisted Living
and other
Institutional Options

Click for
Home Care
Other Care Resources

Click for
Medical Care
and Info

Click for
Resources about
Estate Planning


General Links and Links on Benefits, Programs:

Organizations / Websites of GENERAL INTEREST

Web address

GENERAL:  211ct -- you can search for lots of topics for consumers including for seniors
This forwards to ctlawhelp, online information maintained by legal services organizations (consider a donation!):
GENERAL:  to report abuse:
Current link to Ct Dept. of Social Services, Office of Protective Services
PROTECTIVE SERVICES: To report cases of suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation, call the toll-free In State referral line at 1-888-385-4225, Out of State call Infoline at 1-800-203-1234. After Hours Elder Abuse Emergencies, In State call Infoline at 211, Out of State call Infoline at 1-800-203-1234. (I'm tired of the State changing the location for this information on its website!)
Alzheimers Organization - invaluable source of support, information and programs for the families of those with Alzheimers.    The local chapter is  or for the Connecticut chapter,
Benefits Checkup pages from the National Council on Aging (both take you to the same welcome page)

CT CHOICES program - help choosing supplemental insurance, help with insurance problems. Call a local agency on aging or check this site
Connecticut Department of Social Services Services Aging Services Division, State Unit on Aging

Obviously LOTS of stuff here.

Includes detailed information on programs for seniors and those with disabilities, the Department's Aging Services Manual, available online, and aging services publications
Click to find the local Area Agency on Aging - the agencies offer all kinds of respite and other services and resources and in some regions operate the home care program for elders.

PROTECTIVE SERVICES: To report cases of suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation, call the toll-free In State referral line at 1-888-385-4225, Out of State call Infoline at 1-800-203-1234. After Hours Elder Abuse Emergencies, In State call Infoline at 211, Out of State call Infoline at 1-800-203-1234. (I'm tired of the State changing the location for this information on its website!)

CTElderLaw - consumer-oriented website on a multiplicity of topics for CT elderly

CT Partnership for Long-term Care.
  The "CT Partnership" among other things certifies certain long-term care insurance policies. These policies offer an "asset protection" feature -- once the policy has paid out X dollars, a person can apply for Medicaid even though still having X dollars over the asset limit--whether married or single.

The Partnership page has a URL too long to cite -- click here.
The Partnership offers many useful publications and fact sheets.
The site also includes page summarizing Medicare/Medicaid requirements (take with a grain of salt):

H.E.L.P. - California nonprofit with an array of helpful consumer-oriented publications.  Caution:  state-specific information will be very different than in CT

Disability "help links" on this site - further links to where to find housing, where to find health care, etc.

Elder law links on this site -- lots of super-detailed and often technical information about CT elder law, Medicaid qualification and so forth including forms and tools.   Intended for professionals but you can too.  If it's not here it's probably there (or on the disability links page)
and for CASES of interest on CT elder law:
Justice in Aging -- formerly National Senior Citizens Law Center
View free download or purchase Eric Carlson's
20 Common Nursing Home Problems and How to Resolve Them

National Association of Elder Law attorneys:  Click on the button that says "find an elder law attorney"

National Council on Aging
A national nonprofit advocacy group. Includes information about long-term care insurance, Medicare, Medicaid and Medigap insurance and a list of publications for sale.

Senior Citizens resources on
Developed as a cooperative effort under the aegis of the National Partnership for Reinventing Government and maintained by the Social Security Administration, this site provides access to government services and information covering a wide range of issues (from Social Security to travel tips).  You can also sign up for a mailing list.

Social Security Online - this has gotten progressively more user-friendly but is a very dense site!

Facilities and Home Care:

Nursing Home Information -- FINDING & solving  PROBLEMS

PROBLEMS?  In a nursing home?  Get information about your rights using the website of, run by CT legal services (then click on nursing homes) OR
go straight to the nursing home page here: 
PROBLEMS?  Also:  read more on legal rights and how to argue by getting advice from the National Senior Citizens Law Center on dealing with Nursing Home Problems View free download or purchase Eric Carlson's
20 Common Nursing Home Problems and How to Resolve Them
PROBLEMS?  Need help with problems at the nursing home? CT's long-term care ombudsman. Call 1-866-388-1888 or 860-424-5200 (or see website for more)
PROBLEMS? Find out about nursing homes at National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (formerly the National Citizens Coalition for Nursing Home Reform or NCCNHR) - including a page summarizing nursing home residents rights. Also for CHOOSING a nursing home -- You can order on-line their invaluable publication "Nursing Homes:  Getting Good Care There"; Click HERE to get to the publications page -- you can get it in paper or as an ebook.  See also Consumer Guide to Choosing a Nursing Home -- PDF
FINDING: Get the low-down on individual nursing homes from Medicare's "nursing home compare" page
FINDING: Find the cost of nursing home care in your area - click to find "cost of care in your area."
You may also get this information for CT by checking the website of the Long-Term Care Partnership, here
FINDING: Read the Alzheimer's association guide on "how to tour a nursing home"
FINDING: You can't any longer download a Dept. of Public Health Book on nursing homes -- last update was 2012.  You SHOULD check the licensure to be sure it is what you think it is.

Check a particular facility's licensure or check for updates at "ct.clic" which checks licensures.  You can also find out the rates by looking at the  CT Partnership "long-term care in CT" rates (change year in the urL to get current year).  NOTE:  the STATE rate is usually about half -- much lower.

Assisted Living, CCRCs and other institutional options

FINDING an assisted living facility.  On most of these sites, it's likely that a fee must be paid by facilities in order to be listed (or for referrals through the site), and so not all facilities may be included in the survey.  There are MANY sites that pretend to help you but probably don't give you all the information because of this model.  Or, they will tease you and then you only get more information if you hire a "care advisor." The best of these I've seen is

(1) My favorite: -- it seems the most comprehensive and you can tailor your search for different kinds of facilities.  FOR INSTANCE: In CT a "residential care home" may accept government payments (similar to Medicaid) for those unable to pay, wehreas for private facilities, this isn't available.  This site lets you search for an "RCH."
(2) a guide from, an advisory/ counseling company: (3) a competitor, A Place for Mom,
(4) another,, that seems pretty comprehensive and nonprofit BUT does not seem to include the Benchmark chain!  at least, those are listed as "Bal East Haven" etc. instead of "Village at Mariner's Point East Haven" and so it's a little hard to feel it's comprehensive.
FINDING:  Check out the Consumer Consortium on Assisted Living - you can order "Choosing an Assisted Living Facility: Considerations for Making the Right Decision" - 2nd Edition

FINDING: Find an accredited "continuing care retirement community" at the website of the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities.  A ccrc is typically one where there are different levels of care with a  "buy-in" payment of some kind that -
LEGAL RIGHTS:   If you're in an assisted living facility and they want you to leave, you have the same legal rights as any other tenant.  Legal Services may be able to help. They give priority to folks who are over 60.
Index to local legal services organizations so you don't have to use the toll-free number:
Self-help pamphlets:
Home care and other kinds of help

FINDING A HELPER:  Find a geriatric care manager, now apparently called an "aging life care expert" - to help manage and oversee private care but sometimes also to triage private AND state-funded care. May also help with placement in a facility.

Formerly the National Association of Geriatric Care Managers, AGING IN LIFE CARE still helps you find a care manager

HOW TO GET HELP especially if you qualify for government help, the CT Home Care Program for Elders (state or federally funded levels of care).

Contact the Area Agencies on Aging CHOICES program - administers home health care in Connecticut - call for assessment and assistance in finding home care even if you don't qualify for financial help.

Check out the various regional Agencies on Aging:
South Central Region, "AOASCC" (parts of website originally designed by yours truly) -
South West  -
West (, North Central, and Eastern.

NOTE:  For those with income too high to qualify for the more generous Medicaid waiver Home Care Program, the one that also allows the spouse to keep more money (half the assets, with minimums and maximums and the possibility of keeping it all... see my medicaid for married people article...) -- you MIGHT need a POOLED TRUST.  Read my article....

The application and referral form can be downloaded here.

FINDING PRIVATE SOURCES OF HOME HEALTH CARE:    Same proble as above regarding searching for assisted living. Beware if the list isn't comprehensive.  

Use 211ct search tool  to find a CT home care agency:  search ct211
The best search page I've seen is -- This really does seem comprehensive.
You can also try to search for agencies -- but the list is far from complete.  Another incomplete list:

FINDING SENIOR HOUSING:  Get Dept. of Social Services 2000 "Elderly Housing Directory" - PDF (big file)

Click for the Manual - the link is too long to show!  Too bad it is 13 years old (as of this writing).  You'll have to do a lot to update the contact information.

WHAT TO DO IF HIRING:  Help on private hiring of  caregivers:
Hiring Family or Friends as Your Caregiver: A Guide for Adults Needing Care, (PDF) from Washington State Department of Social and Health Services; Aging and Disability Services Administration - download
WHAT TO DO IF HIRING:  IRS info on household help:
The IRS says (read it) that it doesn't matter how you get the person doing the work -- if you control HOW the work is done, the person is an employee. It's a tricky area.  Social Security, the IRS, and the state labor department may be involved.  If you hire someone through an agency and complain to the agency if the person doesn't do things right, probably the person is not an employee.  But if you tell the person what to do every step of the way, probably the person is an employee.  NOT LEGAL ADVICE FROM ME.  You can look at IRS publication 926 and read more..  NOTE:  home health workers may be subject to wage and hour laws (such as overtime)unless you follow the rules with care.
WHAT TO DO IF CAREGIVING:  Help on adapting the home to make it safer for the elderly:
Download Agency on Aging fact sheet on home modifications - PDF
Get help with pet expenses:  Humane society page (too long to show) Humane Society page (  Commercial site selling Bathroom Assistance, Bedroom Products, Communication Aides, Diabetic Supplies, Lift Chairs, Walkers, Scooters and of course, Wheelchairs.  (NO ENDORSEMENT IMPLIED)

Medical and Health or Health Insurance Information


FORMSThe state of Connecticut has FORMS for advanced directives that let you appoint a health care representative and state your wishes about end of life care.  (1) the forms are so-so, but they are recognized.  In theory in CT we should recognize other forms e.g. from other states, provided the form is signed in front of 2 witnesses. But it helps to have a local form. (2) Even the state form is published in various ways -- I think the DSS version is the best. (3) Lots of attorneys including me will adapt these forms to add things that haven't been included. For instance: if you have a pacemaker you may need to add the instruction to turn it off. Here are some sites to get these forms and find out about the.  You should not have to hire me or some other attorney to do this important document.
Link to information on advanced health care directives including "do it yourself" forms -- good to talk to your lawyers or others about these, but don't let that hold you back from doing this very important document.
The specific link to this topic:
Click on "court forms" tab -- it's a typo I guess.

These forms are from the attorney general's website, but the Aging Services Division of  the  Dept. of Social Services site has a nicer package.  (They also come in spanish), CLICK HERE.

If going to another state you may want that state's forms. This site, from Caring Connections, a program of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO)
,, has good forms but they tend to be a lot more pages than is really necessary!  Pick your state HERE.
Alzheimers Organization - it goes without saying that this would be a key site for anyone dealing with a family member with Alzheimers. However, I found it hard to find local resources and had to navigate a lot of fundraising info.

Check the CT chapter here:
Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral Center (ADEAR), a service of National Institute on Aging. Has many fact sheets
Lots of useful information in PDFs you can download including:
You can also order Caring for a Person with Alzheimer’s Disease: Your Easy-to-Use Guide, from the National Institute on Aging. Publication # 09-6173, call (800) 438-4380 to order.

Alzheimer's Disease Research Center

 -- lots of information including PDF definition of Alzheimers
 -- stages of Alzheimers

Center's page is:
Used to host a useful listserv -- the archive is still listed but the ADRC now refers those interested to the following support groups:

Alzheimer’s Association message boards and chat rooms:

ElderCare Online Forum:

Alzheimer's Care Giver Support Group (started by former members of the ADRC Alzheimer List):

*To repeat: for a host of problems call the CT CHOICES program - they can help with insurance problems. Call a local agency on aging or check this site

National Institute on Aging publications, etc. (

Caregiver Guide

You can also download So Far Away:  20 Questions on Long-Distance caregiving (PDF)  OR you can go to the site and order it in booklet form.

Connecticut Hospice, Inc.
 website says nurses available 24/7 to answer questions:

CT Insurance Department You can contact the Insurance Department with problems, also, go directly to the page with Medicare supplemental policy rates in Connecticut; page listing companies that offer them; page with list of CT Partnership policies; page with list of other companies offering LTC policies; page on HMO external appeals; and compilation of insurance regulations

Center for Medicare Advocacy:  FREE assistance, counseling, and help with appeals of Medicare denials, coverage issues, eligibility issues, they are the EXPERTS.  Consider a donation to this nonprofit.
Medicare has really gone all-out to provide user-friendly information here about Medicare coverage and even treatment.

Various sites with information about prescription discount cards and prescription plans. (Canadian)

Funeral Consumer Alliance of Connecticut Nonprofit group that surveys funeral homes and provides price information.  Order their funeral home survey.

Estate Planning, Taxes, and Finances
: (work in progress)


 **warning to over-eager family membersyou can be required to ACCOUNT to the probate court and to a conservator for your actions and held responsible if anything is missing.  Nursing homes are eager also to try to hold liable the power of attorney or "agent" for an older person if the older person does not qualify for Medicaid because of what the power of attorney did, or failed to do.  DON'T MAKE GIFTS without authority in the document, without the document being signed willingly, AND without consulting a lawyer.  Since 7/1/17 you cannot even set up a joint bank account with the person who signed (the "principal") unless the document says so EXPRESSLY. You have a DUTY to try to preserve any "existing estate plan." See my article.
FORMS:  a durable power of attorney is a very powerful document and you SHOULD get legal advice. However, there are times when a durable power of attorney is an essential tool to help your family members get access to your records, sign forms etc. for your benefit, and on these occasions, you should not be held up by the cost and difficulty of obtaining legal help when time is short.  If the benefits outweigh the risks of doing so, you can use a do-it-yourself form on the website of, run by Connecticut Legal Services.  Read the information!  Much has changed!!  EXERCISE CAUTION This is not legal advice from me    NOTE to those coming to CT from other states: in CT, for a power of attorney to be in "recordable form," that is, usable to convey title to real estate, it must have 2 witnesses, AND an acknowledgment of a notary or attorney -- some states such as NY only require the acknowledgment but without 2 witnesses, this cannot be recorded.

Forms:  HEALTH CARE DIRECTIVES, also discussed above.
The forms on are from the attorney general's website, but the Aging Services Division of  the  Dept. of Social Services site has a nicer package.  (They also come in spanish), CLICK HERE.

If going to another state you may want that state's forms. This site, from Caring Connections, a program of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO),, has good forms but they tend to be a lot more pages than is really necessary!  Pick your state HERE.
Caution: if you have a pacemaker you may need to expressly authorize that it be turned OFF.  Also, this is not a HIPAA RELEASE, only your named health care representative may be entitled to information about you and others would only get information if the representative authorizes it.

Information about CONSERVATORSHIPS
This is too big a topic for me to tackle here. You can read a lot about this on the website of the State of CT probate courts page on conservatorship. You can also download the User Guide for Conservators.

Information on "pooled trust accounts" at PLAN of CT which you may need to qualify for home care in CT!
Sorry ,there IS no public information on this --- stay tuned However, you can read about PLAN, the nonprofit organization that runs the trust in CT, and my explanation in the next column.
A "pooled trust" allows an older person  to qualify for certain home care benefits or to stay in some residential care homes that participate with the state and say they "take Medicaid" -- if the only reason (s)he might not qualify is having income that is "too high" for the program's arbitrary limit (currently (2017) $2.205/mo).  You put the extra income in the trust each month, and presto, it disappears for eligibility purposes.  Currently up-front fee $1,050, monthly about $100.  If more than about $405/month, more is involved. You must get a lawyer for this -- if your current lawyer wants to help you do this, as long as (s)he joins PLAN they will share forms and I can share instructions.   EMAIL ME.
Our laws:  state statutes in Connecticut.  Try it!
Entire Connecticut General Statutes 2013 compilation
(NB: if out of date, replace the year included the URL link with the current or most recent ODD-NUMBERED year. ALSO check for updates in even-number years)

Search statutes, Public Acts

CT estate tax return for non-taxable estates

HA -- it is our "DEATH TAX"!!!!!!!!!
This is the form you file and then get to pay CT's "death tax" known as the "probate fee."  This is required on the death of ANY state resident even one that dies without any need for probate. See my article.  The CT 706 NT is the form and I'm linking it in case you/your family doesn't otherwise need to access the probate system and wants to try this one alone -- although you get what you pay for! :)  Current year CT 706 and CT 706-NT.  If it is crunch time and the home is about to be sold you may be able to get a probate court to issue you the release of lien that you need, too -- PC-256 or PC-256A
If you're curious on what tax you might have to pay, I have a spreadsheet that will compute this -- click here.  NO ESTATE TAX if there is less than $2 million.
Savings Bonds (TreasuryDirect)
Treasury Dept. site for determining current value of US savings bonds
CT State Treasurer "name it and claim it" site
Lost property (at least, in Connecticut)
Immediate Annuity site
You can get a ballpark figure for what dollars are required to produce what benefit and for how long- helpful for planning.  CAUTION:  currently annuities are "counted assets" for Medicaid purposes unless they meet very specific requirements.  Buying one might also be considered a transfer of assets. Use caution.  CONSULT AN ELDER LAW ATTORNEY.
Reverse mortgage calculator
Used to be AARP had  the best one but this one is linked from AARP --

List of Articles Referred to on the main Elderly Planning Page --- you may also want to check the Estate Planning Page:

Other places to write or call:   (please give me feedback on this information so I can keep it current)

Connecticut Programs and Information:

Elder Rights/Protective Services.  Investigates potential cases of elder abuse, neglect, abandonment or exploitation of persons 60 and over including monitoring and linkage with community based services.  1-888-385-4225 or 1-860-424-5241; after hours/weekends Infoline 800-203-1234.

Connecticut Home Care Program for Elders.  Offers home and community based services as an alternative to institutional placement.  Program is available to Connecticut residents aged 65 and older who qualify financially and functionally.  1-800-445-5394 or 1-860-424-5181.  For eligibility information, see the "Home Care" page of the website.  The Department of Social Services Alternate Care Unit also has information.

CHOICES, help for Connecticut residents in selecting appropriate "Medigap" or Medicare supplemental insurance: 1-800-994-9422, Connecticut's program for Health Insurance Assistance, outreach, information and Referral Counseling and Eligibility Screening" (affiliated with the Area Agencies on Aging.)   The State website is impossible to write out! CLICK.

Connecticut Hospice, Inc., 100 Double Beech Road, Branford, CT 06405.  Tel:  (203) 315-7500.  Connecticut Hospice provides care for those in the terminal stages of illness. 

Information on Reverse Mortgages: -- AARP's site has info but NO LONGER has a calculator. - the government's site on HECM reverse mortgages.

The following documents may be somewhat dated, so check the updates. 

"Money from Home: A Consumer's Guide to Reverse Mortgage Options."  Write to FannieMae, 3900 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016-2899. 

"Facts for Consumers -- Reverse Mortgages," published by the Federal Trade  Commission, Office of Consumer/Business Education, Washington, D.C. 20580. 

"Home Made Money,"  published by AARP, lists key questions to ask, offers less costly alternatives to reverse mortgages, and includes information on obtaining reverse mortgage counseling.  The guide can be ordered online or by calling toll free 1-800-424-3410.  You can order online by sending email to

"Your New Retirement Nest Egg," by Ken Scholen, available from The National  Center for Home Equity Conversion, 7373 147th Street West, Suite 115, Apple  Valley, MN 55124. 

Help with Medicare and Medigap Insurance

Help with Medicare Issues:  Center for Medicare Advocacy, P.O. Box 350, Willimantic, CT 06226.  1-860-456-7790. Free assistance for Connecticut residents in most cases. 

Help selecting appropriate "Medigap" or Medicare supplemental insurance:  CHOICES, 1-800-994-9422, Connecticut's program for Health Insurance Assistance, outreach, information and Referral Counseling and Eligibility Screening" (affiliated with the Area Agencies on Aging.)  You can also check the CT Insurance Department site for Medigap policies.


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Lisa Nachmias Davis
Davis O'Sullivan & Priest LLC
129 Church Street, Suite 503
New Haven, CT, 06510
Phone: 203-776-4400
Fax: 203-774-1060 or 776-4411