Page 9 - Palm City Spotlight - June '18
P. 9

Equine Rescue from page 8                                  	 ERAF is located at 6400 S.W. Martin Highway in Palm                                               Palm City Spotlight, Page 9
                                                           City and is open Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m.
	 Volunteers are an essential component in the ongoing     to 4 p.m. The website is www.eraf.org and you can also               Estate
care and operation of the organization. If you are         follow them on Facebook for current events.                        Planning
interested in becoming a volunteer please visit our
website http://eraf.org/becoming-a-volunteer/ for further                                                                   Two Simple Steps To
information.                                                                                                                Protect The Young Adult

Jeff Sabin, Rob Holden, Joe Szhweigart                     Kathleen Roberts, Christine Lamorthe, Jane Collymore,            By Carrie Lavargna,
                                                           Marge Descher                                                    Esquire
                                                                                                                            	 Once a child turns
                                                                                             Photos by Beverly Bevis Jones  18 years of age, they
                                                                                                                            become an adult legally.
                                                                                                                            There are two steps
                                                                                                                            parents and their adult
                                                                                                                            children can take so that
                                                                                                                            universities, hospitals
                                                                                                                            and law enforcement
                                                                                                                            are allowed to contact
                                                                                                                            parents in case of an
                                                                                                                            emergency.
                                                                                                                            	 First, register emergency contact information with the
                                                                                                                            Florida Department of Highway Safety. This program
                                                                                                                            was started in 2005 by a woman from Manatee County
                                                                                                                            in Florida after her 22-year-old daughter was killed in a
                                                                                                                            car accident and neither law enforcement nor the hospital
                                                                                                                            knew how to contact her. Devastated that she didn’t know
                                                                                                                            that her daughter had died for over six hours, she worked
                                                                                                                            to create the emergency contact program in Florida. Now
                                                                                                                            over 13 million people have registered in Florida and the
                                                                                                                            program is available in five other states.
                                                                                                                            	 When you obtain your driver’s license they ask you
                                                                                                                            for emergency contact information and most people give
                                                                                                                            them one name and number. But by going online, you
                                                                                                                            can register up to six phone numbers, home, work or
                                                                                                                            cell for two different people. For my children, I put my
                                                                                                                            husband and myself together as “Person No. 1” with our
                                                                                                                            cell phone numbers and my office number. We cancelled
                                                                                                                            our home line years ago, which makes it very important
                                                                                                                            to include the cell phones. For “Person No. 2” I added
                                                                                                                            a good friend who knows our family well since it’s
                                                                                                                            possible that all of us could be in a common accident.
                                                                                                                            Only law enforcement has access to this information. Go
                                                                                                                            to www.toinformfamiliesfirst.org for more information
                                                                                                                            and to register.
                                                                                                                            	 Second, once your child turns 18, medical professionals
                                                                                                                            are not legally permitted to speak to the parents, without
                                                                                                                            the young adult’s consent. This becomes a tremendous
                                                                                                                            problem when your child has a medical emergency. Have
                                                                                                                            your child sign a health care surrogate designation which
                                                                                                                            conforms with the health care privacy law allowing you
                                                                                                                            to talk with physicians and to make medical decisions for
                                                                                                                            your child if he or she cannot make them. If your child is
                                                                                                                            going away to college, I strongly recommend you get the
                                                                                                                            health care surrogate form signed because universities,
                                                                                                                            and their medical facilities, can be very strict on privacy
                                                                                                                            compliance. I’ve heard several times of parents racing
                                                                                                                            to an out of town hospital only to have the medical staff
                                                                                                                            refuse to speak to them.
                                                                                                                            	 This column is an overview of the subject matter and
                                                                                                                            is not intended as legal advice. Carrie Lavargna is an
                                                                                                                            attorney practicing law in Stuart and is Board Certified
                                                                                                                            in Real Estate law by The Florida Bar and is designated
                                                                                                                            an Accredited Estate Planner (AEP) by the National
                                                                                                                            Association of Estate Planners & Councils.

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