New Jersey Adopts a New Law Which Will Allow You to Die With Dignity and on Your Terms

The State Legislature recently adopted a law entitled  “Aid and Dying for the Terminally Ill Act” which will allow a qualified terminally ill patient to self-administer medication to end his/her life in a humane and dignified manner.

The new law provides that New Jersey’s long standing commitment to individual dignity, informed consent and the fundamental right of a competent adult to make healthcare decisions about whether to have life prolonged through medical or surgical procedures withdrawn and withheld is to be honored and affirmed.  As a result, a qualified terminally ill patient under appropriate safeguards and limitations can obtain medication that the patient may choose to self-administer in order to bring about the patient’s humane and dignified death.

As I indicated in the opening paragraph, there are a number of conditions that are attached to this new law which appear to be very reasonable in reading though I do disagree with some of the provisions as being a bit onerous and bureaucratic.   Still the law serves a very valuable purpose.  Having been with thousands of families over many years, I believe this law is appropriate and a responsible recognition of America’s aging population and the substantial burdens that many terminally ill persons face in the dying process.

While there are a number of individuals and organizations that believe that assistance in ending life is contrary to religious convictions, it is a suitable subject for discussion by all concerned.

I have copies of this Legislation available for anyone that may be interested.   Please contact me by email at fniemann@hnlawfirm.com and it will be our pleasure to send you a copy.

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold Township, Monmouth County, NJ Elder Law Attorney

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