So many people will avoid making an estate plan as though somehow, someway by avoiding the conversation, they can avoid the sickness or even worse, death. However, no one on this earth knows the exact date and time they could become injured, ill or in a terminal condition that leaves them comatose. And during the times of not knowing, do you really want to leave the decision to a loved one, a family member or worse yet an estranged spouse or significant other?
In light of so many of friends and family getting ill and in effect becoming unable to make their own decisions regarding life and death and the extremity of saving their life, I thought I should share my sentiments about why living wills matter someday. But after Lamar Odom’s healthcare scare unfolding in the public’s eye, I thought perhaps someday is today. And when you feel the urge to do something, you do it, even if it is to give something away for free through October 31, 2015.
Just in case you didn’t know, there are two types of advance directives which is usually combined into 1 form: (a)A living will spells out what types of medical treatment a person wants at the end of life if he’s unable to speak for himself. (b)A health care power of attorney appoints someone to make health care decisions — and not just decisions regarding life-prolonging treatments — on one’s behalf. The appointed health care agent (also called an attorney-in-fact or proxy) becomes the patient’s spokesman and advocate on a range of medical treatments the patient sets out in the durable power of attorney for healthcare.
Now that you know, the following are reasons to consider in deciding whether or not you should have the final decisions on health scares:
1. In the absence of this document, in times of crisis, healthcare providers will seek to find next of kin to decide whether or not you live or die. And this can be tricky because folks come out of anywhere to offer up suggestions, professional advice and unsolicited advice until someone shows up to speak on your behalf; which may cause problems based on family dynamics.
2. Sometimes the one in charge is not necessarily the one you would chooses because of decisions they made that caused you pain in the past…. (I’ll leave that one right there).
3. In the absence of an advanced directive or next of kin stepping forward, healthcare providers who don’t know you, your likes, dislikes, preferences and/or religious beliefs will make a decision for you. Just remember, we are speaking of healthcare professionals who assess what, if any, medical treatment you should receive based on their knowledge, experience and intuition.
4. Things get a little tricky regarding how much someone will fight for your life in the absence of paperwork that en$ures your life is worth trying to save.
5. Lastly, some decisions should be considered only when you are in sound mind and body and fully expecting, hoping and dreaming of living your best life instead of scrambling in desperation to do something.
Please note the information should not be deemed as legal advice, but education information that you might want to consider but not necessarily adhere since we’re talking about your story, your life and your legacy. However, if I’ve convinced you enough to consider drafting downloading the attached Healthcare Directive that meets the Commonwealth of PA’s standards. If you are outside of PA, feel free to visit your state’s Attorney General’s Office or AARP website to compare what you need to tweak to ensure your documents comply with your state law.
Do you have any other suggestion to inspire individuals to plan for their future as though their voice matters? If so, please leave a comment below and let me know. Additionally, please don’t forget to share this post with your friends because every should get a free legal treat every once in a while.
P.S. Here is the Link:
Toni Moore, Esq.
Toni is an attorney and business coach who is committed to helping women uplevel their success.
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