CLINIC STUDENTS REFLECT

Kim Allison and her client.

Kim Allison and her client.

  • Pride:  In watching the “Gen Silent” documentary about LGBT elders, I learned that they are more likely to age alone.  They often face hostility from their own families as well as from the broader community.  As an attorney, I will commit to being welcoming and accepting of LGBT clients.
  • Paradox:  It’s rewarding to help clients control their future through planning.  There’s a sense of relief that comes with having a simple document such as a will or power of attorney.  As tough as it may be initially to consider death or disability, there is empowerment in taking control over one’s future, even somewhat paradoxically, where that may mean ceding some control through a power of attorney.
  • Proactive:  For my own family’s needs, I now have a better understanding of the importance of being proactive regarding estate planning.  Also, I learned that the difference between a good and a great attorney is the ability to explain legal issues in a way anyone can understand.
  • Professional ethics:  I came to appreciate the way the Clinic deals with its clients.  Without the Clinic’s guidance, I would have tended to ignore an elderly client and dealt mostly with the more “competent” person who brought him.  My mindset would have been similar to how I would approach a parent-child situation.  I’ll be more careful now.  The Clinic teaches us to preserve the dignity of older clients by respecting them as autonomous adults to the greatest extent possible.

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