I’ve returned to Maine for the holidays. During some of the quiet times I am working on my new book, The Empowered Paralegal Approach to Elder Law.” Those of you who have read “The Empowered Paralegal” know that the basic approach to dealing with clients is understanding not only their legal needs, wants and goals, but understanding the client him or herself in a way that allows the paralegal to remove barriers to communication and properly manage the client as a member of the legal team. This takes on a special meaning with elderly clients and often means applying the same principles to the client’s family. Clearly many elderly clients need special accommodations due to diminution in mobility, hearing and sight. However, it is also important for the paralegal to be aware of the basics of psychology of aging and the varying perceptions that clients and their families have of aging, dying and death, as well as the effects that those perspectives have on the client and their families as they work through legal issues.
I am very interested in hearing from practicing paralegals about their experiences with elderly clients and their families. Please contact me by comment here or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your comments, problems, concerns, accommodations or stories regarding elderly clients.