My mother suffered from Alzheimer's Disease. When, she and my father sought out the advice of an attorney for their estate planning (before I became an attorney), that attorney was insensitive and did not take their financial situation and personal needs into consideration. As a result, my parents failed to follow up, take action and create a plan.
I had earlier worked with two gerontologists who developed a system to allow people to age at home with dignity and independence. That work inspired me to work to help others, like my mom and dad, to live with dignity and independence. That simple system started by those town gerontologists (who were husband and wife) became the Lifeline System!
As a result of the experience of my mom and dad, I decided, while my mom was still in her early stages of dementia (Alzheimer's Disease is a form of dementia), to go to law school and become an elder law and estate planning attorney.
My Bachelor's degree in Psychology and empathy for those like my mom was a primary influence in my decision to help others. I realized I would be able to combine my passion for those like my mom and dad with my Psychology education , experience in helping people live with dignity and independence as well as my Masters Degree in Business so that I would be able to offer sound financial and tax advice in addition to caring for the person, their family and their legal needs.
My dad took great care of my mom. She passed away in January of 2002 after suffering many years with this terrible disease. I have been privileged, along with my wife, who is also my law partner, to help thousands of others like my mom and dad.
Yes, we also plan for young families, families with young children, families with disabled children as well as those in the middle of their career, at retirement and beyond. As a result of my business education and experience, we counsel businesses and help families pass their business to the next generation. But I never forget it was my mom that not only brought me into this world, she inspired me to help others.
Languages Spoken: English, Italian, Greek, Spanish, Portuguese
Licensed since 1993
Cash, Check, Credit Card
I endorse Attorney Spano. He has extensive experience with elder law and estate planning matters. He has instructed other lawyers on how to best serve our clients. I attended his class on how to review long term care insurance policies and advise clients on how to coordinate their benefits and coverage for long term care with other programs, including Medicaid.
John Roberts Probate Attorney
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
I endorse this lawyer highly. Stephen is a well regarded elder law and special needs attorney. He is one of 17 nationally certified elder law attorneys in Massachusetts. As past president of both the Massachusetts chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the National Elder Law Foundation, he is widely respected in the elder law community.
Ian Oppenheim Elder Law Attorney
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
|Award Name||Grantor||Date Granted|
|Super Lawyer||Super Lawyers||2012|
|Super Lawyer||Super Lawyers||2008|
|Super Lawyer||Super Lawyers||N/A|
|Preeminent (AV) Highest Possible Rating||Martindal Hubbell AV Rated||N/A|
|Board Certified Elder Law Attorney||National Elder Law Foundation||N/A|
|Partner of the Year Award||Mystic Valley Elder Services||N/A|
|Adjunct Professor of Law in Post Doctoral LLM Program||Western New England University School of Law||2013 - 2013|
|Principal||Spano & Dawicki||1900 - Present|
|Association Name||Position Name||Duration|
|National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys||Member||N/A|
|The Community Family||Director & Treasurer||N/A|
|Boston Estate Planning Council||Member||N/A|
|Life Care Planning Law Firms Association||Past President||N/A|
|National Elder Law Foundation||Past President||N/A|
|Massachusetts Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys||Board of Directors||N/A|
|North Shore Alzheimer's Partnership||Founding Member||N/A|
|North Shore Hospice||Advisory Board for Planned Giving - Past Member||N/A|
|Greater Lynn Senior Services||Vice-President & Board Member -Past||N/A|
|Massachusetts Guardianship Association||Founding Board of Directors - Past||N/A|
|National Elder Law Foundation||Board of Directors||N/A|
|Massachusetts Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys||Past President||N/A|
|Life Care Planning Law Firms Association||Board of Directors, Past||N/A|
|Massachusetts Bar Association||Member||N/A|
|Greater Medford Visiting Nurses Association||Director, Past||N/A|
|Morrison v. Commonwealth of Massachusetts||First child caregiver contract case to win against the state Medicaid agency, the Office of MassHealth, in Superior Court.|
|NAELA Advanced Institute||Elder Divorce as an Estate Planning Tool||2009|
|University of Massachusetts||English||BA - Bachelor of Arts||N/A|
|University of Massachusetts||Psychology||BA - Bachelor of Arts||N/A|
|Northeastern University||Business Administration||MBA Masters Degree in Business Administration||N/A|
|New England School of Law||Law||JD - Juris Doctor||N/A|
|National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys 2013 Annual Conference||Basics of Medicaid for Elder Law Attorneys||2013|
|National Advanced Elder Law Review Course In Washington DC||Health & Care Planning, Pre-Mortem Legal Planning, Fiduciary Representation, Legal Capacity Counseling, Benefits Advice, Special Needs, Insurance Counseling, Employment & Retirement Counseling, Housing Counseling, Litigation & Administrative Advocacy||N/A|
|National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys Annual Conference||To Marry or Not to Marry (ReMarry)||N/A|
|Extensive Speaking Engagements Presented Annually to Professionals and the Public||Elder Law, Estate Planning, Probate, Tax, Guardianship, Life Care, Medicaid, MassHealth, Asset Sheltering, Asset Protection, Nursing Home Matters, Assisted Living, Congregate Housing, Veteran's Benefits, Guardianship, Conservatorships, Financial Planning||N/A|
|Elder Law Basics Program for Attorneys Presented at Suffolk University School of Law Advanced Elder Law Institute||Suffolk University School of Law Advanced Elder Law Institute Elder Law Practice Areas for Attorneys Entering the Field of Elder law||N/A|