Happy New Year. As is their practice every year, the Illinois General Assembly
passed new laws which are effective January 1, 2016.
Here are just a few. Some follow cultural trends. Others are just interesting.
One important trend is increasing emphasis on the needs of senior citizens.
An increasing proportion of our work is in this area.
- DUI: An individual with 4 convictions for driving under the influence will
have an opportunity to obtain a restricted driving permit. Beginning 1/1/2016,
they can demonstrate that they have turned their life around and petition
for a restricted driving permit that will them to drive only during certain
time of the day for certain purposes. They must have a breath ignition
lock device on their car. If they have one more DUI, they are barred from
driving for life.
- DUI Again: Offenders with 2 DUI convictions in 5 years must have a breathalyzer
locked ignition device installed in their cars.
- Electric Cars: Prohibits a conventional car from parking in a spot designated
for an electric car.
Medical Coverage and Costs:
- Experimental Drugs: People dying from serious illnesses may try experimental drugs.
- Cannabis: Employers and insurance companies are not required to reimburse
individuals for the cost of marijuana used for treatment (in worker compensation
or other injury cases).
- Gay Conversion Therapy: Prohibited.
- Medical Costs: Prohibits hospitals from charging more for out of network
surgical assistants than for in network surgical assistants
- Medical Costs: Expands coverage for infertility and inability to conceive.
Estate Planning and Long Term Care:
- Wills: There is now a presumption that a will or codicil executed by a
disabled individual who has a guardian is invalid. The presumption can
be overcome by clear and convincing evidence.
- Health Care Power of Attorney: There was another (!) “fix up”
to the health care power of attorney act where the general assembly rewrote
the law. It fixes problems with the 2015 version of the law and adds back
features from the 2014 law.
- Nursing Home Surveillance Cameras: Individuals living in nursing homes
may install surveillance cameras in their rooms. The purpose would be
to document appropriate or inappropriate care. This gives seniors in nursing
homes an important right.
- Caregiver: Hospitals must give patients the opportunity to designate a
caregiver before discharge.
- Elderly: Creates “Silver Alert” system for missing disabled
adults and those with Alzheimer’s and other diseases.
The Most IMPORTANT Law Passed: Pumpkin Pie is officially the State Pie!
Please contact us if you have questions in the areas of estate planning,
elder law and care for seniors, and estate administration.