Prof. Gittler was joined this week by Prof. Thomas Gallanis, J.D., Ph.D., N. William Hines Chair in Law, University of Iowa College of Law. Prof. Gittler began by discussing care giving responsibilities in long term care, many of which are borne by family members, especially adult daughters. She explained that caregivers of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias experience an even greater burden than do other caregivers because of the unique symptoms and long duration of these dementias. Additionally, Prof. Gittler highlighted the negative impact care giving has on a provider’s financial situation.
Prof. Gallanis then lectured in part about a proposal that Prof. Gittler and he developed. This proposed model legislation attempts to address long term care burdens through the laws of succession, creating a elective share in the decedent’s estate for the decedent’s primary caregiver. Prof. Gallanis also discussed several methods a caregiver might use to manage a care recipient’s property, including powers of attorney, joint bank accounts, joint tenancies, and custodial and bespoke trusts.