Legal

Autism Coverage Bills

With the rise of autism awareness comes further state legislature for autism medical coverage.  Both Florida and Michigan have passed autism coverage bills for review.  These bills are intended to help families in need pay for necessary therapy for children with autism.

Is Lying Against a Doctor's Moral Code?

According to Arizona state officials, no it’s not.  The new legislature, which states that doctors who fail to clearly articulate an unborn child’s risk of birth defects are protected against malpractice suits, is meant to prevent women from having abortions.  The Senate proposed this bill that would eliminate malpractice suits against doctors who allegedly did not make clear the risks of defects or disabilities of an unborn child.

Protecting Assets for Child with a Disability

Estate planning and lifetime planning for parents with a child with a disability present special challenges. The goals of the parents are to utilize their assets in such away to enrich their child’s life while, at the same time, preserving the child's public benefits.

Estate Planning Options

Parents of a child with a disability have four options with respect to estate planning:

Special Needs Advocacy 101

"Is my child getting all the services he/she needs or am I falling behind?"

"My son is a year old, but all he does is make noises, I’ve never heard any words come out of his mouth.   I’ve mentioned this to the pediatrician on numerous occasions and the doctor just tells me not to worry.  He says my son will talk when he is ready.  What does that mean?"

Blue Shield to Cover Autism Therapy

Blue Shield of California Life & Health Insurance Co. agreed this week to immediately cover the cost of applied behavior analysis (ABA) therapy for autism patients. This decision was the result of a settlement with state regulators, stemming from a dispute this past July when California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones filed an enforcement action against Blue Shield. “This favorable settlement agreement eliminates the frustration and insecurity so many families have faced when seeking autism treatment for their children,” Jones said in a statement. 

Planning for Health Care Decision Making

Planning for health care decision making includes two key components:

1. Preparation of a written advance directive, more commonly referred to as a living will, durable health care power of attorney, or health care proxy.

2. Appointing someone to be your trusted agent to speak for you when you cannot speak for yourself regarding health care decisions.

What are Advance Directives?

Guardianship and Developmental Disabilities

Surrogate Decision Making for People with Developmental Disabilities

Using RtI Data to Get Ready for IEP Season

Now that the holidays are done and even though it is not yet Spring, the time is now to get ready for what is commonly known as "IEP season." While the thought of the next annual review or domains meeting to decide on a round of evaluations may be enough to provoke an anxiety attack, there are some strategies that can be employed to give you more control and a plan going into the next round of meetings. The following are some useful things to do that I have been using recently as I get ready to represent parents at IEP meetings.

Improve Your Special Needs Financial Planning

The Hidden Financial Costs of Having a Child with Special Needs: Part Two

Hidden Financial Costs of Special Needs

The Hidden Financial Costs of Having a Child with Special Needs: Part One