Massachusetts law about elders' issues

A compilation of laws, regulations, and web sources on the law surrounding issues of concern to the elderly.

Table of Contents

Massachusetts laws

St.2018, c.220 (H4116) An act relative to Alzheimer's and related dementias in the Commonwealth
Among this law's provisions:

  • Requires content about Alzheimer’s and other dementia to be incorporated into physicians, physician’s assistants, registered nurses and practical nurses continuing medical education programs
  • Requires doctors to share an initial Alzheimer’s diagnosis and treatment information with a family member or legal personal representative, after obtaining the patient’s express or implied consent
  • Requires hospitals that serve adults to have a plan for recognizing and managing individuals with dementia within 3 years

MGL c.6A, s.18L Silver Alert Community Response System
MGL c.62, s.6(k) Real Estate Tax Credit for those 65 and older
MGL c.90, s.22I Permits health care providers and law enforcement officers to report "cognitive or functional impairment or incapability to operate motor vehicle safely" to the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
MGL c.111, s.236  Designation of caregiver to receive patient health information and discharge plan. Note: The legislature inadvertently created 2 laws with the same citation. Scroll down past the organ donation information to see the correct section

Crimes against the elderly

MGL c.19A s.14 Elder abuse, definitions.
MGL c.265 s.15A  Assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, victim 60 or older.
MGL c.265 s.15B Assault with a dangerous weapon, victim 60 or older
MGL c.265 s.18 Assault with intent to murder, victim 60 or older
MGL c.265 s.19 Robbery by unarmed person, victim 60 or older.

Massachusetts regulations

105 CMR 309 Safe driving. "designate[s] for health care providers and the Registry of Motor Vehicles cognitive or functional impairments that are likely to affect a person's ability to safely operate a motor vehicle."

540 CMR 24 Medical qualifications for operators of motor vehicles. "provid[es] minimum physical and mental qualification standards determined to be necessary for the safe operation of a motor vehicle."

Web sources

800 Age Info: Resources for Massachusetts Elders, 800 Age Info.

Complete Guide to Managing Your Parents' Finances When They Cannot, Atlantic Publishing, 2009. Requires library card for access.

Divorce After 50: Your Guide to the Unique Legal and Financial Challenges, Nolo, 2016. Requires library card for access.

End of Life Care, Executive Office of Health and Human Services.  
Includes links to brochures in many languages, regulations, forms and more, regarding Mass. requirement that health care providers "distribute to appropriate patients...culturally and linguistically suitable information regarding the availability of palliative care and end-of-life options."

The Family Caregiver Handbook: Finding Elder Care Resources in Massachusetts, MIT Workplace Center
"The Family Caregiver Handbook is a "gateway" to key elder care organizations across the Commonwealth, providing telephone numbers, locations and website addresses so that caregivers can find the most appropriate resources closest to their own community." Topic areas include housing, health care, insurance, financial, transportation, recreation, and more.

Get it Together: Organize your Records So Your Family Won't Have To, Nolo, 2018
Includes information on health care directives, durable power of attorney, organ donation, insurance, bank accounts and more. Requires library card for access.

How To Retire Comfortably & Happy on Less Money Than the Financial Experts Say You Need: Insider Secrets to Spending Less While Living More, Atlantic Publishing, 2008
Book covers both ways to spend less and ways to save more. Requires library card for access.

IRAs, 401(k)s and Other Retirement Plans: Taking Your Money Out, Nolo, 2017
Includes information on early distributions, periodic payments, types of retirement plans, and more. Requires library card for access.

Long-Term Care: How to Plan and Pay for it, Nolo, 2016
Includes information on at-home care, hospice care, asset protection, long-term care insurance, and more. Requires library card for access.

Nursing Home Consumer Information Page, Bureau of Health Care Safety and Quality
Includes nursing home regulations, information on choosing a nursing home, and more

POMS Manual: SSA's Program Operations Manual System, Social Security Administration

Retire Happy, Nolo, 2008
Steps to take to plan your retirement, both personal and financial. Requires library card for access.

Social Security, Medicare and Government Pensions: Get the Most Out of Your Retirement and Medical Benefits, Nolo, 2018
"This book is intended to help you get all the benefits to which you are entitled: Social Security (both retirement and disability based), Supplemental Security Income, veterans benefits, and civil service benefits." Requires library card for access.

Print sources

American Bar Association Legal Guide for Americans Over 50, Random House, 2006

Elder Law (Mass. Practice), West, annual.

Elder Law Answer Book, Wolters Kluwer, loose-leaf.

Massachusetts Elder Law, Lexis.

Contact

Phone

Within Massachusetts only

Within Massachusetts only

Online

Reference librarians online Chat with a law librarian 
Reference librarians via email masslawlib@gmail.com

Address

Administrative office (no law library at this location)
2 Center Plaza
9th Floor
Boston, MA 02108
Last updated: November 7, 2018

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