Southwood Meeting Notes June 4/13

Gordon Frazer, a lawyer in Calgary came and spoke with us.  We discussed the incident of one of our partners being forced into hospital because she hugged a minor.  The fact is that regardless of intent, our society views the protection of children as very important.  We discussed the events and everyone agreed the RCMP officer involved obviously lacked any understanding and acted far too heavy-handed.  However, he did follow the letter of the law.  The Mental Health Act in Alberta allows the police to take someone and have them admitted to hospital based on a mental disorder and that includes dementia/alzheimers.  So one more thing to add to the list of all caregivers - what actions may your partner take that may be misconstrued and be the basis for someone else being frightened/concerned and calling the police.  Of note, if the police insist your partner be taken in the police car, you may challenge "what is the harm of me taking them?"  If they allow you to take your partner to hospital do not be surprised if they follow you. 

The second topic of conversation was on Personal Directives and Power of Attorney/Enduring Power of Attorney.  Is this still on your list?  GET IT DONE THIS WEEK!  Unfortunately for one of our group she thought they had more time to get some of the affairs in order.  It is obvious to her now that she should have done this earlier.  So rather than a smaller fee and  1 or 2 visits to the lawyer, she will have to file for guardianship- she must go to court and ask to be appointed trustee.  This is apparently much more expensive and takes a lot of time. 

Last topic "involuntary separation".  This has nothing to do with you wanting a separation from your spouse, it is not a precursor to divorce.  The involuntary separation has to do with money only.  It is an income tax thing.  When your partner has to go into care, you are separated "involuntarily" - the paperwork separates your income.  This is important in determining how much you have to pay for care. 

Very good meeting - good discussion.  GET YOUR PAPERWORK DONE.  PACKAGE: WILL, PERSONAL DIRECTIVE (this is about health) and POWER OF ATTORNEY(this is about the money). 

Next meeting:  Mollie Cole, Manager of the Strategic Clinical Network, Seniors Health will attend.  Please come out for this.  It is important that AB Health meet us and learn of our issues. 

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