Kommer Bave and Ciccone LLP General Practice Law Firm

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Recent Successes And News:   Month: June 2024

Bringing Awareness to Alzheimer’s

Did you know that nearly 7 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s? June is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, and here at Kommer Bave & Ciccone LLP we are working to raise awareness of this devastating disease. As elder law attorneys, we are acutely aware of the impact of Alzheimer’s and other dementias on the individuals and the families we represent, and many of us have our own personal stories of how our lives have been touched by Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s is a cause close to the heart of Managing Partner Patty Bave, Esq. After her father passed from Alzheimer’s 34 years ago, she has made it a personal mission to support families dealing with this disease. This year, along with leading the KBC LLP Team at the Westchester Walk to End Alzheimer’s, she has also joined the Walk’s Executive Leadership Team. In this role, Patty meets with like-minded professionals under the direction of the Alzheimer’s Association to find new and creative ways to raise money and awareness around Alzheimer’s. The money raised by the Walk goes to support the families locally who are struggling with a family member with the disease as well as to the research efforts for a cure.

To learn more about why we walk, visit our Westchester Walk to End Alzheimer’s page.

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Daughter holding mother's hand

New York State Legislation Considering Medical Aid in Dying Act

Medical aid-in-dying (MAID) involves having a physician prescribe a lethal dose of medication at the request of a competent patient with a terminal illness. While traditionally, assisted suicide has been viewed as a crime, a trend has been emerging with more states legalizing medical aid in dying. As of 2024, MAID is legal in the following 11 states:

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Hawaii
  • Maine
  • Montana
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • Oregon
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • Washington, D.C.

Currently, several more states are considering legislation to make medically assisted death legal. This includes New York, with the New York State legislature considering the Medical Aid in Dying Act (A995/S2445). This Act is modeled after Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act and has core eligibility requirements.

Patients seeking MAID must be adults with a prognosis of six months or less to live. They also must demonstrate that they are mentally competent and able to administer the lethal medication themselves. The New York State bill would require that the patient have two physicians confirm their diagnosis, prognosis and mental competence before they can receive life-ending drugs. The physician is tasked with ensuring the patients are qualified and informed of the risks and alternatives, and are not being coerced.

Seeking Legal Solutions to Health Care Needs

With advance directives, including living wills and powers of attorney, an individual can outline their wishes ahead of time. These documents allow them to communicate their medical care preferences to their families and doctors. These documents can prove especially important in case of a serious injury or illness, or when someone is facing a terminal illness.

Proper planning will protect your interests and ensure appropriate arrangements. The attorneys at Kommer Bave & Ciccone LLP can assist you in choosing the care and treatment you would prefer at the end of life through carefully drafted advance directives. Contact us today for guidance.

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June 15th is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 10 percent of older adults experience some form of abuse each year. In addition to physical harm, elder abuse can also encompass financial exploitation, neglect, and emotional abuse. Older adults who experience abuse are more likely to suffer depression, physical injuries, cognitive decline, and premature death.

To raise awareness of this issue, the World Health Organization at the United Nations has declared June 15th as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, here are five things everyone can do to build community support and prevent elder abuse:

  1. Learn the signs of elder abuse and how we can solve the issue together.
  2. Prevent isolation. Call or visit our older loved ones and ask how they are doing on a regular basis.
  3. Talk to friends and family members about how we can all age well and reduce abuse with programs and services like law enforcement, community centers, and public transportation.
  4. Sign up to be a friendly visitor to an older person in our communities.
  5. Send a letter to a local paper, radio or TV station suggesting that they cover World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (June 15) or Grandparents Day in September.

NCEA Prevent Elder Abuse

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Joann D’Emilio, Esq. to Speak on Elder Law and Estate Planning

Joann D'Emilio is a senior associate attorney with Kommer Bave & Ciccone LLPJoann D’Emilio, Esq., senior associate attorney with Kommer Bave & Ciccone LLP, has been invited to speak at the Ardsley Senior Center on June 12th about Elder Law and Estate Planning. With her practice focusing on Trusts and Estates, Elder Law, and Special Needs matters she has extensive experience in developing estate plans.

During this hour-long presentation for the Ardsley Seniors, Ms D’Emilio will give an overview of estate planning, why estate planning is important, and what one should consider when putting together a plan. She will highlight the different documents that are included in a comprehensive estate plan, including details on what each document type accomplishes. She will also talk about planning options for Medicaid and long-term care, including asset protection strategies.

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