Legal Rights - a minefield for people living with dementia

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Media Release

Tuesday 15 March 2016                                                                                                                                  

Legal Rights - a minefield for people living with dementia

People living with dementia and their carers will now have access to the much-sought-after new resource, Dementia and Your Legal Rights, to help them better understand their legal rights when it comes to dementia.

Today Alzheimer’s Australia National CEO, Carol Bennett, together with The Assistant Minister for Health, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP will launch the new document at the National Consumer Summit at Parliament House at 11.00am.

“The subject of legal rights and dementia has been identified by our consumers as a priority area of concern,” Ms Bennett said.

Minister Wyatt said it is crucial to ensure the rights of people with dementia are protected.

“It is wonderful to be involved in launching a much-needed tool for people with dementia and their families, to assist them in understanding their rights and the actions they can take to ensure their rights are protected,” Minister Wyatt said.

Dementia and Your Legal Rights is a consumer driven initiative, developed by Adjunct Fellow in Elder Law, Ms Sue Field and Professor Colleen Cartwright with guidance from the Dementia Australia’s consumer advisory groups, comprising of people living with dementia and carers.

“The National Consumer Summit provides an excellent opportunity to share this new resource with many of the consumers that have been so involved in its development and review.” Ms Field said.

Bronte Parkin and his wife Glenda, who is living with dementia, have been involved in developing the new resource with the legal experts.

“In our experience there are current gaps in Australian law in relation to dementia. It has been good to identify the areas we have found difficult so further information and advice can be made available on important areas that are part of everyday life, including driving, employment, travel and superannuation,” Mr Parkin said.

Dementia and Your Legal Rights provides practical information for people with dementia and their families and carers on:

  • What mental capacity means, and how it applies to decision-making;
  • Legal rights and decision-making with regard to finances;
  • Legal rights and decision-making with regard to health care and personal matters; and
  • Legal rights and responsibilities around employment and superannuation; criminal responsibility; voting, driving; travel; and Wills.


Media enquiries:

Bianca Armytage | 0407 019 430 | [email protected]


Read or download Dementia and Your Legal Rights here.

Alzheimer’s Australia is the peak body representing people with dementia and their families and carers. It provides advocacy, support services, education and information. More than 353,800 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than half a million by 2030.

National Dementia Helpline: 1800 100 500
An interpreter service is available
(The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)
Dementia is a National Health Priority Area

Media resources and additional information