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Education and Outreach



This is just a general comment. I attended Kent Alderman's presentation at Sun Valley earlier today (Saturday, July 18, 2009). Obviously, a lot of people have put a lot of time, energy, experience, and concerned thought into this project. The proposal appears to be very well-suited to the goal of protecting the personal and property rights of a "protected person" who, possibly, is not in need of sweeping protection -- or perhaps any protection at all. The proposal is clearly aimed at gettting to the truth about the capacity/incapacity of the "protected person." Kudos to all involved on a job well done. Having said that, and I think Lyle Hillyard alluded to it, in a given case the litigation could go on and on and on at great cost to someone (e.g., the assets of the protected person, the government???). I'm not saying that the people involved in formulating the proposal did not try to balance the need to protect "protected persons" against the cost (money, time, emotions, court resources, etc.) but, as the proposal goes forward to the next step, I think everyone involved needs to ask the question: "How can we do the best we can to not let a new law backfire and end up necessitating what MIGHT otherwise but unnecessary?" If such protection is already built into the proposal, I apologize for not listening more carefully to Mr. Alderman today (there was a stretch of time when I was checking email on my phone). Also, do you think there is a way to better educate the public concerning how revocable trusts, power of attorney, and advance medical directives can alleviate some (possibly all) of the risk that mom or dad will have to go through this more involved guardianship/conservatorship process? Of course, having asked that, I suppose the same dangers exist in those circumstances -- perhaps even more, e.g., that a doctor is allowed to make a determination of incapacity and thereby turn over too much power and control to people who, arguably, don't deserve it (although, remember, mom and dad did CHOOSE who they want to be trustees, power of attorney agents, and medical power of attorney agents). FWIW. Randy Holmgren