Senior Center Initiative

CDEL offers legal services to a large number of clients through Initiatives. These are programs developed in response to a specific legal issue which has a disparate impact on low-income seniors and/or persons with disabilities. The Senior Center Initiative (SCI) is one of these programs.

The rationale for the SCI is that seniors with capacity should prepare durable Powers of Attorney for Health Care and Property as a means of avoiding potential abuse and financial exploitation, as well as the possible requirement of a guardianship proceeding, should they later become incapacitated.  The SCI is designed to afford seniors the opportunity to learn about and prepare these important advance directives.  The SCI has three components:  (1) presentations offered on-site at senior centers; (2) accredited continuing legal education (CLE) seminars at which volunteer attorneys and paralegals receive training regarding advance directives; and (3) workshops held at senior centers, where residents meet individually with an attorney; prepare and execute the advance directives; and receive final, fully-executed documents.

In 2018, CDEL:

  • Made 81 SCI Presentations
  • Offered 31 SCI Continuing Legal Education Seminars;
  • Held 67 SCI Workshops; and,
  • Helped 1027 seniors execute durable Powers of Attorney for Health Care and Property and Living Will Declarations.

Since the inception of the program in 2007, CDEL and its volunteer attorneys have assisted over 7,500 seniors with their Advance Directives.

For more information, or to schedule a workshop at your community center, please call (312) 376-1880 ext. 402.

To volunteer, please contact CDEL here, or through the Chicagao Bar Foundation/Paladin site, located here.

Periodic free training is available through CDEL's CLE program.