April 16, 2011
On April 16, 2011, Kelley Drye attorneys participated in a Legal Clinic organized by SAGE (Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Elders), at the LGBT Community Services Center. The Clinic was part of a series of life planning legal clinics that are offered annually throughout New York City as part of National Health Care Decision Day.
The SAGE Legal Clinic consisted of two parts: 1) an educational component on the importance and scope of health care proxies, powers of attorney, and living wills; and 2) individual sessions where SAGE constituents could speak with a volunteer attorney to fill out and notarize such documents. Kelley Drye associate Melissa E. Byroade volunteered for the program. They noted that end of life planning is important for all adults. However, LGBT elders face a unique set of challenges that make advanced directives all that more important for them to consider. The associates said that participating in the SAGE clinic was a great opportunity to directly assist elders within the LGBT community and give them peace of mind that their healthcare and financial wishes would be followed.
National Health Care Decision Day is a 50-state annual initiative that aims to provide (free of charge) essential information to older adults regarding the necessity of advanced directives as well as the opportunity for seniors across the nation to complete and file their own advanced directives.