David Perecman, Lawyer for Family of Avonte Oquendo, Applauds Justice Department for Agreeing to Fund “Avonte’s Law” Proposal Protecting Children With Autism

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New York lawyer David Perecman of The Perecman Firm applauds the Justice Department for agreeing to fund optional tracking devices to be worn by children with autism.

New York personal injury lawyer

The Perecman Firm

To know that a child is safe and protected will be the best thing and help to prevent more tragedies like Avonte’s.

Attorney at Law David Perecman, founder of The Perecman Firm and lawyer for the family of Avonte Oquendo, applauds the U.S. Department of Justice for agreeing to fund voluntary electronic tracking devices to be worn by children with autism. A day after the funeral for Oquendo, Senator Charles E. Schumer pushed for the new law.

"Avonte's Law" was named after Avonte Oquendo, a 14-year-old boy with autism who wandered away from his Long Island City school on October 4. Three months later Avonte’s body was found in the East River in Queens, reported the L os Angeles Times (1.30.14).

The proposed law was presented by Schumer at a press conference in New York City on January 26, 2014. In attendance were Avonte's mother Vanessa Fontaine, grandmother Doris McCoy, their Attorney David Perecman, Executive Vice President of Strategic Communations at Autism Speaks Michael Rosen, and Rosen’s son who is on the autism spectrum.

The federal government would provide the $10 million for the GPS tracking devices for autistic children under the proposed legislation. Interested parents would be given free access to the equipment that can be worn on the wrist or ankle or clipped to clothing, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Usage of the monitor would be up to the parents of the autistic child. The precise system of employing the devices would be up to individual municipalities, reported the Los Angeles Times.

When Avonte left his school, authorities took 45 minutes to an hour to contact the police, Perecman said.

The Los Angeles Times cited select results of a 2012 study by the Kennedy Krieger Institute. Children between the ages of 4 and 7 with autism were four times more likely to wander away than children of the same age without autism. The study, found that 49% of the children over the age of 4 had tried to run off at least one time.

“Often times when autistic children run away they place themselves in danger,” said Perecman. “To know that a child is safe and protected will be the best thing and help to prevent more tragedies like Avonte’s."

The new program is modeled after an existing Department of Justice program that tracks individuals with Alzheimer's, the Los Angeles Times said.

The Los Angels Times article was “Feds to help pay for tracking devices for autistic children.”

About David Perecman and The Perecman Firm, PLLC:

For the past 30 years, the New York City lawyers at The Perecman Firm, PLLC have handled all types of New York accident cases. David Perecman, founder of the Firm, has been recognized for his achievements as an Honoree in the National Law Journal's Hall of Fame, in New York Magazine's "The Best Lawyers in America" and The New York Times Magazine "New York Super Lawyers, Metro Edition" for the years 2007-2010. The prestigious U.S. News & World Report ranks The Perecman Firm among the top 20 personal injury firms in New York City for 2011-2012 and 2012-2013.

The Firm has recovered millions of dollars for its clients. Among the more recent victories, Mr. Perecman won a $15 million verdict** for a construction accident (Index 112370/03) Supreme Court, New York County, a $5.35 million dollar verdict*** for an automobile accident (Index 2749/04) Supreme Court, Kings County, and a $40 million dollar structured settlement for medical malpractice (Index 2146/03)****Supreme Court, Kings County.

The Perecman Firm serves Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, Long Island, Westchester, Upstate NY, Morris County, and Rockland County.

**later settled while on appeal for $7.940 million    
*** later settled for $3.5 million
**** total potential payout

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"Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome."

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