Free Legal Services Available To Eligible Seniors

SonnyphotoBy Sonny DiSabato, Senior Citizen Coordinator

Hello fellow seniors.

South Jersey Legal Services, Inc. (SJLS) is a private, non-profit law firm that provides high-quality civil legal services to low-income residents of several counties in New Jersey, including Camden County. The firm’s Camden County office has a senior citizen advocate center, which provides legal assistance to county residents who are 60 years of age or older and meet established guidelines.

For more information about the Camden Senior Citizens Advocate Center, call (856) 964-2010.

Energy Assistance, Preventive Services Available

Camden County may be eligible for some help keeping your home warm during the winter, thanks to several government-sponsored programs.

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program is a federally funded program, providing one-time aid to low income households for their heating costs. Even if these costs are included as part of an individual’s rent, they may still be eligible to receive aid. Applications are accepted now through April 30. Benefit eligibility is dependent upon income, household size and heating type. The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program is administered by the department of Community Affairs.

Created by New Jersey’s Board of Public Utilities, the Universal Service Fund helps low-income households pay for their electric and natural gas bills. To qualify, a household must be income eligible based on program guidelines and spend more than three percent of household income on gas and/or electricity.

The Lifeline Utility Assistance Program helps eligible low-income senior citizens and the disabled with their electric and natural gas costs. Homeowners and renters can apply for Lifeline by filling out the Pharmaceutical Assistance for the Aged and Disabled (PAAD) application.

The Temporary Relief For Utility Expenses (TRUE) program was designed to help low to moderate income households to pay their natural gas and electric bills. This program provides benefits only to income eligible households who have not received assistance through the Universal Service Fund or the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program in the past 12 months, have a notice of overdue payment for gas or electric service, and have a good payment history on their utility bills.

The Weatherization Assistance Program helps elderly, handicapped and low-income persons to weatherize their homes, improving their heating system efficiency and conserving energy. Eligible recipients will receive both an energy audit and installation of the recommended energy efficiency measures at no cost. The program is available year round to New Jersey residents.

For more information on these and other programs that benefit seniors and the disabled, visit Camden County O.E.O. at 5287 Rt. 70, Pennsauken. Office hours are 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Residents can also call the office at (856) 910-1180.

Wishing you good health, happiness and a Happy Thanksgiving! Please say a prayer for our men and women in the Armed Services. May the come home safe and soon.

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