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AARP Foundation Legal Advocacy

AARP Foundation conducts legal advocacy through its litigating arm, AARP Foundation Litigation (AFL).  AFL advocates for systemic change in federal and state courts nationwide to advance the legal rights and interests of people 50 and older, particularly low-income and vulnerable individuals.  Through representation in significant cases and participation as amicus curiae (“friend of the court”), AFL takes on harmful, widespread practices or policies of industry, business, or government. AFL helps older people stay connected to their communities by tearing down barriers and establishing pathways to economic opportunity and social stability.

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Current Priorities

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ECONOMIC  OPPORTUNITY - AARP Foundation attorneys litigate on behalf of older adults to secure opportunities to generate income and to protect their assets. 

Earning - Create opportunities to earn a living

AFL defends the rights of older adults in cases involving hiring, promoting, and terminating in the workplace.

Saving - Protect savings and assets

AFL protects savers, investors, and consumers through legal advocacy concerning employee health and welfare benefits; pension benefits; and fraudulent, predatory, and discriminatory commercial practices (financial exploitation).


SOCIAL CONNECTEDNESS - AARP Foundation attorneys litigate to keep older adults connected with their loved ones, safe in their homes, and engaged in their communities.

Connecting - Promote elder justice

AFL combats the causes and consequences of social isolation, including protecting older adults from physical and emotional abuse, neglect, and exploitation. 

Housing - Improve the ability to age in place

AFL expands access to affordable, accessible, and healthy housing.

Other impactful efforts on behalf of vulnerable older adults

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Supreme Court Preview cover

U.S. Supreme Court Preview, 2018

AARP Foundation Litigation presents a discussion of cases before the Court during the upcoming term, highlighting those having a significant impact on people age 50 and older.

Map of AFL 2018 cases amicus and litigation

On the Docket: Active in the Courts for You

Explore recent cases (in reverse chronological order of activity) in which AARP Foundation attorneys have filed, or that have been decided by the court.

Active Litigation Cases

Follow cases in which attorneys with AARP Foundation are engaged.

Recent Amicus Cases

Read recently filed amicus briefs.

In the News

People Using Wheelchairs Facing Housing Discrimination

A suit filed in New York alleges discrimination against people using wheelchairs. "Banning residents who use wheelchairs to get around their home and their community is blatant discrimination on the basis of disability and a violation of federal law," said Susan Silverstein, senior attorney with AARP Foundation.

Louisiana Legislation on Nursing Facility Camera Installation

A lawsuit initiated by AARP Foundation, Graff v. Heritage Manor, was instrumental in the enactment of the Louisiana legislation on the placement of video cameras in the rooms of nursing facility residents.

School District Charged with Violating Age Discrimination in Employment Act

Foundation attorneys Smith and McCann are co-counsel in an age discrimination lawsuit against Montgomery County Public Schools. The suit charges that the school district's pension plan violates the federal ADEA by mandating disability benefits that differ by a participants age.

Court Strikes Down Medicaid Work Requirement for Kentucky

AARP Foundation's brief noted some of the chronic problems that are common among Medicaid recipients, and why implementation of the proposed waiver would be detrimental and impede Medicaid's objectives. The court preserved the status quo and continuity of coverage.

Attorney McCann Quoted on the Difficulty Proving Age Discrimination

In discussing age discrimination in employment hiring practices with NPR's Noguchi, Attorney McCann states, "the issue is whether or not workers can even get in the courthouse door to challenge practices that clearly screen out older workers."

Attorney Bagby Interviewed Regarding Patient Dumping

"Patient dumping" is a serious issue that can confront vulnerable residents of nursing facilities. Attorney Kelly Bagby discusses ongoing litigation regarding one case of this practice with KSRF-FM's Mary Lou Cooper.

In the Spotlight

Dental Hygienists Will Continue to Provide Life-Saving Dental Care

AARP Foundation attorneys helped win a case against the California Department of Health Care Services to continue providing life-saving dental care for developmentally disabled and elderly people in care facilities.

Discrimination Against Tenants with Disabilities

AARP Foundation attorneys and co-counsel filed suit in U.S. District Court alleging practices and policies that force tenants with disabilities to move out of their homes.

Fifty Years of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)

In the article (33 A.B.A. J. Lab. & Emp. L. 89 (2018)), AARP Foundation's age discrimination expert Laurie McCann discusses the enactment of the ADEA fifty years ago. Unfortunately, although changes have been achieved and the landscape has evolved regarding this social ill, age discrimination remains a pervasive and prevalent problem that the attorneys with AARP regularly confront and challenge.

Contact Us

AARP Foundation earns a high rating for accountability from a leading charity evaluator. 

Eighty-one cents of every dollar we spend goes toward programs and services that help low-income older adults. We have met every one of the Better Business Bureau’s 20 Standards for Charity Accountability.