The Sandoval Signpost

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Community Bits

Free legal assistance available to 55+

The Lawyer Referral for the Elderly Program is a service provided by the State Bar of New Mexico and the New Mexico State Bar Foundation to all New Mexico residents fifty-five years of age or older. The program is funded by the New Mexico Aging and Long Term Care Services Department, the New Mexico Civil Legal Services Commission and the State Bar of New Mexico.

Persons fifty-five years and older can call the LREP legal help-line and receive assistance from the LREP staff regarding issue assessment, legal information, and legal advice. If the problem cannot be resolved by the LREP staff, LREP can assist the caller by making a referral to an appropriate agency or to a private attorney. Consultations with the LREP staff attorneys are free of charge. Referrals to private attorneys are made on a free, reduced, deferred, or full-fee basis, depending on the case priorities and income and asset guidelines.

LREP also conducts legal workshops and clinics throughout New Mexico, typically at community centers and senior programs. LREP distributes free of charge informational brochures that address various legal issues of interest to seniors such as durable powers of attorney, advance health-care directives, Medicaid nursing-home eligibility, creditor problems, Social Security, wills and trusts, and the probate process. The program also makes available at no charge standard forms of advance health-care directives and durable power of attorney. The LREP staff can assist persons in completing these forms and signing them properly.

The LREP office is open from 8:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Persons living in the Albuquerque area can call LREP, at 797-6005. Those living outside the Albuquerque area can call toll-free, at 1-800-876-6657.

Electric wheelchairs from Medicare

All Medicare recipients should now be aware that if they suffer from conditions such as arthritis, cardiovascular disease, or respiratory disorders and have difficulty walking or propelling a standard wheelchair, they may be eligible to receive an electric wheelchair paid for by Medicare.

For information on Medicare eligibility, contact Gregory at (800) 810-2877.

Rio Grande Nature Center plans Summer Wings celebration

Friends of the Rio Grande Nature Center will present Summer Wings, August 12 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. This annual celebration of butterflies, dragonflies, hummingbirds, and bees is a free event in support of the nature center. It takes place at the state park, 2901 Candelaria NW. Parking is $3 per car.

Events will include hummingbird banding by Joan Day-Martin, certified hummingbird bander, from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m., followed by a slide show and talk on hummingbirds by Day-Martin; bird and nature walks; tours of Mariposaville, the center’s pollinator garden; live raptors presented by Wildlife Rescue; a discussion and display by the Native Plant Society; and children’s activities. For more information, call 343-1373.





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