Touro Law Center’s Aging and Longevity Law Institute Identifies Capacity Crisis, Holds Conference to Prepare Legal Profession for Future

Date: October 10, 2013
Media Contact:

Patti Desrochers
Director of Communications
pattid@tourolaw.edu
(631) 761-7062

Central Islip, N.Y. – Touro Law Center’s Aging and Longevity Law Institute (ALLI) held a conference on Monday, October 7 that identified a growing capacity crisis amongst our nation’s seniors. The conference “The Capacity Crisis, What Lawyers Need to Know and Do for Their Clients, the Public and Themselves” brought together experts, including members of the academy, bar and bench, and addressed the role of the legal profession to recognize and address America’s capacity crisis. The innovative and unprecedented program began the process of educating the legal community and helped facilitate a national dialogue as to why society, including the legal profession, must address the capacity crisis.

“The capacity crisis is a critical issue that needs to be examined and addressed,” said Bob Abrams Co-Founder and Of Counsel to Abrams, Fensterman, Fensterman, Eisman, Formato, Ferrara & Einiger, LLP and Chair of the ALLI Advisory Board. “The statistics prove that the situation is getting worse not better and that these changing demographics of society demand a response from the legal, professional and academic communities. Touro Law is leading an interdisciplinary approach to identifying the problems, sharing information and training professionals to ensure an effective course of action for dealing with the crisis.”

The numbers show the critical need for this type of institute and illustrate the depth and breadth of this capacity crisis:

  • 5.2 Million: Current alzheimers patients
  • 13.8 Million: Projected alzheimers patients in 2050
  • $200 Billion: Current annual cost for treatment of people with diminished capacity.
  • $400 Billion: Projected annual cost in 2040 for treatment of people with diminished capacity
  • $1.2 Trillion: Projected annual cost in 2050 for treatment of people with diminished capacity

At the conference, Touro Law Center’s Aging and Longevity Law Institute received honors by the New York State Office for the Aging as well as from the Suffolk County Legislature. Keynote addresses were delivered by the Hon. A. Gail Prudenti, Chief Administrative Judge, New York State Unified Court System, Greg Olsen, Acting Director of the New York State Office of the Aging, and the Hon. Kathleen Rice, Nassau County District Attorney. In addition, other schools within the Touro College network participated including: Dr. Robert Goldberg, Dean of Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine; Dr. Stuart Feldman, Dean of Touro College of Pharmacy; and Dr. Melissa Earle, Associate Dean of the Touro College Graduate School of Social Welfare.

“I have spent almost two decades working with state and local government on a myriad of issues affecting our aging population and am so pleased to help bring this Institute to fruition to formally address these issues among lawyers, judges and law students,” said Patricia Salkin, Dean of Touro law Center. “The legal academy will now be better prepared to be effective in serving the needs of our aging community from direct provision of legal services and counsel, to advocacy for change to best meet the challenges that lay ahead. I am so pleased that Touro Law is at the forefront of identifying and addressing critical needs in our society for the benefit of all.”

The Institute is the first-of-its kind program in the country that teaches law students and the legal profession to be better prepared to help the nation’s aging population. The Institute has been designed to provide attorneys and other professionals with the information and resources they need to serve the 100 million Americans who are 50 years of age or older.

“The Institute will address a wide variety of educational topics, including fragility of capacity, adult children with special needs, bankruptcy, confidentiality, emergency preparedness, estate planning and administration, financial planning, grandparents’ rights, mental health issues, retirement, taxes and many others,” said Marianne Artusio, Founding Director of the Institute. “In addition, courses will be added to the Law Center curriculum for JD and LLM students.”

“Touro Law Center has long recognized a critical need in the community to serve our aging society,” said Greg Olson, Acting Director of the New York State Office for the Aging. “The New York State Office for the Aging looks forward to continuing our partnership with Dean Salkin and Institute Chair Robert Abrams as we continue to build and strengthen partnerships to improve access to justice.”

“The Suffolk County Legislature takes pride in honoring those special institutions whose accomplishments are deserving of praise and admiration by the local community,” said Steve Stern, Suffolk County legislator. “The Suffolk County Legislature wishes to congratulate the Touro Law Center for establishing the first-in-the-nation, innovative Longevity and Aging Law Institute.”

For additional information about the Aging and Longevity Law Institute at Touro Law Center, please contact Director Marianne Artusio at (631) 761-7090 or Coordinator Robert Cannon at (631) 761-7190.

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