Wednesday, 14 August 2019
We have just become Fife’s first Dementia Friendly legal practice and are delighted to be part of a Dementia Friendly Community across Fife which enables people who are affected by dementia to remain a valued and active part of the community. In order to obtain this award businesses must ensure our offices have signage that promotes easy access and navigation and that staff are trained in how best to work with people living with dementia.
All partners, the majority of solicitors, paralegals and support staff completed their training with Ruth McCabe from the Dementia Friendly Fife Project earlier in the summer.
Ruth said: “It is exceptionally helpful that Stevenson and Marshall took the time to become a Dementia Friendly company. The nature of the work they do means that a developed knowledge of dementia and the issues faced by people living with a diagnosis and their families will be vital when they are supporting them to make decisions. For example Powers of Attorney requires an intimate knowledge of people’s circumstances and understanding of how to assess the fluctuating nature of capacity. It has been a great pleasure working with them and they should be congratulated for being the first Lawyers in Fife to receive the award.”
This training and award adds to the accolade gained earlier this year when Jillian Barnes, the firm’s Lifetime Legal Partner, gained accreditation as a Solicitor for the Elderly. Jillian is the first solicitor based in Fife to become a member of Solicitors for the Elderly. Solicitors for the Elderly is a national organisation of trusted legal advisors who provide specialist legal advice for older and vulnerable people, their families and carers.
Jillian said “It is important that anyone living with dementia is still able to see their solicitor to access legal services such as making a Will and their diagnosis should not prevent this. A diagnosis of dementia does not mean that people cannot make their own decisions. However, it is important to also think about putting in place a Power of Attorney so that you can choose who you want to manage your affairs if dementia was ever to prevent you from doing so in the future.”
Jillian and her team are always happy to offer home, nursing home and hospital visits as well.
Why not take some time and watch this excellent video on what it's like to live with Dementia. It will give you a much fuller understanding as the video was made by three people who have been diagnosed with early onset dementia and they openly share their challenges with the full and rewarding lives they still lead.