Government Law Center Releases 2 New Health Law Explainers

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The laws surrounding adult protective services and guardianship for adults with developmental disabilities in New York State are complex, but Albany Law School’s Government Law Center has prepared two new explainer documents to help attorneys and policy makers understand the law more fully.

The explainers are the latest in a series from the Government Law Center (GLC) that concisely map out the law that applies to important questions of public policy. The Center has also created explainer documents on the Paycheck Protection Program and immigration policy.

The explainer was written by Special Consultant on Aging Law Rose Mary Bailly, who oversees the center’s Aging Law Program. Michele Monforte provided editorial assistance.

The explainer about Adult Protective Services, sometimes called Protective Services for Adults, covers a program mandated by New York law that is overseen by the state's Office of Children and Family Services and operated by county departments of social services. The services involve "intake, investigation and assessment of referrals of abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation" of adults who are unable to care for themselves because of a physical or mental impairment and have no one to assist them responsibly, regardless of the adult’s income.  The explainer shows that there is a delicate balance between respecting the autonomy of vulnerable adults and protecting them from harm.

The explainer about guardianship for adults with developmental disabilities discusses the two guardianship statutes in New York State—guardianship governed by the mental hygiene law (general guardianship) and guardianship governed by the surrogate's court procedure law (developmental disability guardianship)—and highlights the differences.

Each explainer is available on the GLC’s website and is free for public use.

Beyond the latest explainers, the GLC currently has four other health care and aging law–related explainers, including: