It may be unpleasant to think about now, but most of us will come to a time in our lives when critical medical decisions must be made about the type of treatment that we should receive in life-or-death situations. While modern medicine has come a long way in prolonging life, in many cases, the procedures done to accomplish this are painful, expensive, and result in a living standard that many find unacceptable. In fact, one study shows that the majority of doctors familiar with life-saving procedures would not want them done on themselves. A doctor cannot provide medical care without your consent, but if you become capacitated, someone else will have to make this medical decision for you, unless you have a living will in place.
By creating a living will (also referred to as an Advanced Healthcare Directive or “ADR”), you can take control of what medical procedures and care you should receive.
Creating Your Living Will
By law, a medical provider is required to honor the wishes you set in your living will, provided it has been drafted in accord with applicable law. In your living will, you can clearly state the type of medical care you should and should not receive with respect to:
- Pain relief and management
- Hospice care
- Surgical operations
- Resuscitation orders
- Use of breathing ventilators
- Whether feeding tubes should be used
- Any other end-of-life intentions or desires you have
One of our estate planning attorneys will guide you through all the questions that you will need to address in your living will, and ensure that your living will comprehensively and clearly states your wishes for medical care and is kept in a safe and accessible place so that attending medical providers will follow it when the time comes.
We can also work with you to create a legal power of attorney which will place decisionmaking power in the hands of a trusted family member or friend who will see to it that your living will is followed and will be responsible for addressing any further issues regarding your care that may arise.
Create a Power of Attorney With the Help of Experienced CA Estate Planning Attorneys
The estate planning attorneys at The Law Offices of Omar Gastelum and Associates, APLC, can help you create or update a living will and/or power of attorney that will clearly lay out your wishes and place your care in the hands of a trustworthy person of your choosing. To discuss all of your estate planning needs, call our offices today.