Representing Individuals with Diminished Capacity


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February 12 & 13, 2016: Diminished and Diminishing Capacity: Challenges and Solutions

(Georgia CLE Course No. 200822 – Representing Individuals with Diminished Capacity)

Dementia is a disease. It is not normal aging. Unfortunately, the prevalence of dementia is significant. The Alzheimer’s Association informs us that someone in the United States develops Alzheimer’s disease every 67 seconds.   Every professional can expect to work with clients with diminishing or diminished capacity. How should you respond to those individuals? Are you prepared, or will you struggle when that happens?

On February 12-13, 2016, the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey hosted a conference in Dalton, Georgia. Representing Individuals with Diminished or Diminishing Capacity 2016 conferenceThe conference was designed to prepare you for this challenge. Dr. Peter V. Rabins, author of The 36 Hour Day, is our keynote speaker. Dr Rabins delivered a presentation on “Alzheimer’s Disease: The Challenges and Joys of Caregiving” and on “Surrogate Decision Making.” Viki Kind, a bioethicist and author of the Caregiver’s Path to Compassionate Decision Making spoke on “Evaluating Risk, Danger and Safety When Creating the Care Plan.”  

The conference was held at Stage 123, located at 123 W. Gordon Street, Dalton, Georgia.

CLE: This conference was approved by the Georgia Commission on Continuing Lawyer Competency for 12 hours of regular CLE including 1 hour of ethics, 1 hour of professionalism, and 3 trial hours. It was approved for 11.50 hours (including 1 dual hour) in Tennessee as Course ID No. 176070.

Agenda:  The agenda  was as follows:

Friday, February 12, 2016

  • 8:00 to 8:50 Registration 
  • 8:50 to 9:00 Welcome David L. McGuffey
  • 9:00 to 10:30 Dr. Peter V. Rabins, Professor and the Director of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and co-Author of The 36 Hours Day Alzheimer’s Disease: The Challenges and Joys of Caregiving
  • 10:30 to 10:50 Break [Visit exhibitor tables]
  • 10:50 to 12:20 Dr. Peter V. Rabins, Surrogate Decision Making
  • 12:20 to 1:40 Lunch [Visit exhibitor tables]
  • 1:40 to 3:10 Viki Kind, M.A., Bioethicist and Author of the Caregiver’s Path to Compassionate Decision Making Evaluating Risk, Danger and Safety When Creating the Care Plan
  • 3:10 to 3:25 Break [Visit exhibitor tables]
  • 3:25 to 4:25 Viki Kind will be speaking on Capacity and decision-making. (Mr. Charlie Sabatino, previously scheduled for this session, will not be able to join us).
  • 4:25-4:30  Final Door Prizes and announcements 4:30 Adjourn  


Saturday, February 13, 2016

  • 8:00 to 8:35 Registration 
  • 8:35 to 8:45 Welcome David L. McGuffey
  • 8:45 to 9:45 Kristen M. Lewis, J.D. Elder Financial Abuse
  • 9:45 to 9:55 Break 
  • 9:55 to 10:55 Timothy L. Takacs, CELA Life Care Planning
  • 10:55 to 11:05 Break 
  • 11:05 to 12:05 Mary F. Radford, Professor of Law Georgia State University College of Law; former president of ACTEC Ethical Challenges in Representing Clients with Diminishing Capacity
  • 12:05 to 1:15 Lunch 45 minutes facilitated discussion during lunch regarding Life Care Planning
  • 1:15 to 2:15 Drew Early, J.D. V.A. Benefits
  • 2:15 to 2:25 Break 
  • 2:25 to 3:25 David L. McGuffey, CELA and Catherine Anne Seal, CELA  Guardianship Litigation, Part 1 (This program makes use of video segments from a mock trial.)
  • 3:25 to 3:30 Break 
  • 3:30 to 4:30 David L. McGuffey, CELA and Catherine Anne Seal, CELA and President-Elect of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys Guardianship Litigation, Part 2 (This program makes use of video segments from a mock trial.)
  • 4:30 Adjourn 


If you have questions regarding future conferences, please contact Melinda Byers. You can reach us at (706) 428-0888.

Speaker Bios:

Dr. Peter V. RabinsPeter V. Rabins, MD, MPH is a Professor of the Practice at the University of Maryland Baltimore county (UMBC), Professor of Psychiatry, part time, at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and a member of the Berman Bioethics Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. He was the founding director of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry and the first holder of the Richman Family Chair in Alzheimer Disease and Related Disorders at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. His career has focused on the psychiatric and behavioral symptoms of neurological diseases including the dementias, as well as geriatric mood disorders, and serious mental illness in the elderly. He has published more than 300 articles and book chapters and is an author or co-author of 8 books including the 36_Hour Day, Practical Dementia Care, The Why of Things, and Getting Old without Getting Anxious.


Viki Kind, M.A.Viki Kind is a clinical bioethicist, professional speaker and hospice volunteer.  Her award winning book, The Caregiver’s Path to Compassionate Decision Making: Making Choices For Those Who Can’t, guides families and professionals who are making decisions for those who have lost capacity.  Viki is known as “The People’s Bioethicist,” because she is a rare individual who bridges two worlds, that of the health care professional and of the family struggling to make the right decision. She is an honorary board member of the Well Spouse Association and has been a caregiver for many years for six members of her family.



Professor Mary RadfordProfessor Mary F. Radford is the Marjorie Fine Knowles Professor of Law at the Georgia State University College of Law in Atlanta, Georgia.  Her teaching areas include Wills, Trusts & Estates; Elder Law; and Business Succession Planning.  Professor Radford is an Academic Fellow of the American College of Trust & Estate Counsel (ACTEC) and, in 2011-12, she served as that organization’s President.  Professor Radford served as the Reporter and principal drafter for the State Bar of Georgia committees that drafted the 1998 Revised Georgia Probate Code, the 2005 Revised Georgia Guardianship and Conservatorship Code, and the 2010 Revised Georgia Trust Code.  Professor Radford is the author of Redfearn: Wills & Administration in Georgia (Thomson Reuters, 2008); Trusts & Trustees in Georgia (Thomson Reuters, 2015-16 ed.); and Georgia Guardianship and Conservatorship (Thomson Reuters, 2015-16 ed.), as well as numerous law review articles and other scholarly publications. 


Timothy L. TakacsTimothy L. Takacs is certified by the National Elder Law Foundation as a Certified Elder Law Attorney and by the State of Tennessee as an Elder Law Specialist. Takacs, AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell, was one of the first elder law attorneys in the nation to assemble an interdisciplinary team of experts to provide integrated client care. His innovations have transformed the practice of elder law in the United States and have set a new standard of excellence in the field.Takacs writes for and gives presentations regularly to attorneys and other professionals about elder law. He is founder of The NAELA eBulletin, a weekly newsletter published by the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. He is the author of Elder Law Practice in Tennessee, a treatise for Tennessee attorneys published by LEXIS Law Publishing, and A Guide to Elder Law Practice. He received the NAELA John Regan Writing Award for 2004, which is awarded by NAELA for the most original and influential article published in the NAELA Quarterly during the year.He is also a recipient of the 2003 NAELA President’s Award.

Kristen M. LewisKristen M. Lewis is an attorney with Smith, Gambrell & Russell in Atlanta. She has devoted her 32 year legal career to serving families with children and other loved ones challenged by various disabilities. She is nationally recognized for her work in the Special Needs Trust Planning area, and is a frequent speaker and author on this topic. She is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, and an active member of the Special Needs Alliance. She currently serves on the Boards of All About Developmental Disabilities and Georgia Community Supports and Solutions, which serve persons with disabilities and their families. In her vast amounts of free time, she is also a volunteer trainer for Canine Assistants, which raises and trains service dogs for recipients with various disabling conditions, where she staffs Saturday night Puppy Nursery Duty each week.


Drew N. EarlyDrew N. Early was born in Harrisonburg VA. He attended the US Military Academy, West Point NY, graduating in 1979. Mr. Early served in US Army, including service with XVIII ABN Corps, Second Infantry Division, Tenth Mountain Division, and Third Army.  Multiple deployments, including Haiti and several to the Middle East (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Yemen, and the Emirates). He graduated, with honors, US Army Command and General Staff College and follow-on attendance at US Army School of Advanced Military Studies, with an advanced degree in Strategic Planning. He received separate Master’s Degree in Management while on active duty. After military retirement, Mr. Early attended at law school, graduating cum laude from Georgia State University and currently runs his own law firm, focusing on veterans assistance and elder law. Mr. Early is an adjunct professor at Emory University’s College of Law.





Catherine Ann Seal and David L. McGuffeyCatherine Anne Seal is the senior member in the law firm of Kirtland & Seal L.L.C. in Colorado Springs.  Ms Seal is the Public Administrator for the Fourth Judicial District of Colorado, serving El Paso and Teller Counties.  She is the first person ever awarded an LL.M. Degree in Elder Law from the Stetson University College of Law, graduating with honors.  Ms Seal received her B.B.A. degree with honors from Colorado State University and a M.S. degree in marketing from the University of Colorado – Denver.  She received her law degree from the University of Colorado Law School and holds a Graduate Certificate in Gerontology from the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs.  She is a member of the American Bar Association’s Real Property, Trusts and Estate Law Section where she serves as co-chair of the Surrogate Decision Making Committee.  She is President-Elect of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and is past-chair of the Guardianship Section. She is the past-president of the Colorado Chapter of NAELA, and is one of only seven attorneys in Colorado designated a Certified Elder Law Attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation.  As a member of the Colorado Bar Association, Ms Seal is a past-Chair of the Elder Law Section.  She is the author of Colorado Elder Law, published by Thompson West Publishing as part of their Colorado Practice Series.  Her practice is concentrated in the areas of elder law, protective proceedings, probate, financial exploitation of the elderly, and related matters.


Catherine Ann Seal and David L. McGuffeyDavid L. McGuffey is in private practice with the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey, LLC, located in Dalton, Georgia. David limits his practice to Elder Law and Special Needs Law. This means he helps individuals who are elders or who have special needs, as well as their caregivers. Much of David’s practice is devoted to helping individuals with chronic health conditions find, get and pay for good long-term care. David is certified as an Elder Law Attorney (CELA) by the National Elder Law Foundation. David is AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell. In 2012, David was invited to join NAELA’s Council of Advanced Practitioners. David is a member of the Special Needs Alliance. David has been selected as a “Georgia SuperLawyer” in the field of Elder Law each year since 2013.



The Fine Print

Seating is limited, and registration will not be confirmed until payment is received by the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey. Although this program is offered to attorneys first, after October 31, 2015, the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey reserves the right to sell Day One Only seats to non-lawyers. That means your seat for Day One might disappear if you do not register early.

No one is guaranteed a door prize; door prizes may be given to any person attending other than sponsors. Door prize winners are responsible for shipping costs, if any.

The Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey has applied for 12 hours of Continuing Legal Education credit in Georgia and Tennessee. Georgia has approved 12 hours of general CLE. We are seeking Georgia approval for one hour of ethics, one hour of professionalism and three hours of trial. Tennessee approval is pending; however, we do not guarantee that any accrediting agency or bar association will provide CLE credits to attendees. We will provide attendees with proof of attendance, a copy of materials in electronic or other form, and speaker bios.

The Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey may or may not provide additional events, such as receptions, and may or may not charge an additional fee for those events. Information regarding additional events will be made available after registration is underway and after we determine an estimated headcount. If you would like information on other events, please contact our office.

The Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey reserves the right to use, publish, display, distribute, sell, and/or reproduce in any manner video/recorded voice/photographs, including the right to edit or use a portion of such video/recorded voice/photographs for educational and marketing purposes and/or the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey website or other websites. Further, the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey reserves the right to partner with other organizations regarding any video or audio rebroadcast of the program presented.

Individuals who cancel their registrations by 5 p.m. on January 11, 2016 will receive a refund less a$125 cancellation fee. No refunds will be given after January 11, 2016. Cancellations must be in writing and will not be accepted by telephone. If this program is postponed for any reason, you may apply your registration fee toward the rescheduled date, or if you cannot attend, we will provide a copy of the edited DVDs from the program. The Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey is not responsible for any loss or damage (including travel expenses and hotel accommodations) as a result of an alteration, postponement or cancellation of the event. Please note that while speakers and topics were confirmed at the time of publication, the Elder Law Practice of David L. McGuffey reserves the right to modify the advertised speakers and topics if necessary without any liability and without any specific notice. Any changes will be updated on our webpage as soon as possible.

How Can We Help?

If you would like to know more about how our firm can serve you, we invite you to call us at 800-241-8755 or fill out the “How Can We Help” form on any page on this website. If you hire us, our goals are to solve the problems  you entrust to us and to provide peace of mind.


Preferred Initial Meeting