Would Your Doctors And Loved Ones Know Your Wishes?
If you became incapacitated by grave illness or accident, your doctors and your family would have to make important decisions about your care. A health care directive guides your loved ones and medical providers by spelling out your wishes regarding medical intervention and end-of-life care.
An estate planning lawyer of Cogdill Nichols Rein Wartelle Andrews (CNRWA) will sit down with you to discuss these sensitive but important questions, and draft clear instructions for medical personnel and your immediate family.
Don’t overlook this key piece of your estate planning. Call our Everett office at 425-247-3984 to discuss a living will and related documents.
Why You Should Have A Health Care Directive (Living Will)
A health care directive or medical directive, commonly known as a living will, is a legal document. It provides specific guidance on what actions the medical staff should or should not take on your behalf, such as:
- Heroic measures – If your heart stopped, would you want to be resuscitated?
- Life support – If you lost brain function or the ability to breathe, would you want to be kept alive?
- End-of-life care – Do you want life-extending treatment? Pain medications? Religious rites?
Physicians must adhere to medical directives, such as a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order. In the absence of a living will, physicians may be required to act against your wishes, or family members may be powerless to do what you would have wanted.
Power Of Attorney For Health Care
In addition to a living will, you may want to designate a loved one as your health care proxy, also known as health care power of attorney. That person would be empowered to make decisions on your behalf if you were incapacitated. For example, they could authorize surgery or other medical intervention in a crisis situation when time is of the essence.
Knowledgeable Counsel For Sensitive Matters
The key to a living will is in the details. You may think your family members know your wishes, and vice versa, but when the time comes there may be disagreements or heart-wrenching decisions. Our attorneys walk you through various scenarios to ensure that the directive to physicians reflects your wishes and avoids those dilemmas.
CNRWA invites you to arrange a consultation today, online or by phone. Based in Everett, we provide full-service estate planning in the Seattle area and throughout Washington.