What Should be Included in Your Living Will?
You should make a living will as a part of your incapacity plan. You need to ensure that you have made a legally valid, comprehensive and enforceable plan if you do not want to leave decisions about medical care to chance.
You have the right to decide in advance what kind of care you may wish to receive, or decline, in the event of a serious medical emergency or end stage illness. It is up to you whether or not you want to take advantage of that right or put your family in the difficult position of trying to figure out what your wishes actually are if something happens to you.
Zimmer Law Firm can help you to understand Ohio laws on the creation of a living will and can assist you in making certain that you create this type of advanced directive so you have the ultimate ability to control your destiny and make choices on quality of life versus longevity of life. Give us a call today to find out more about what is involved in creating a legally valid living will that can provide the protections you need in case of incapacity.
What Should You Include in a Living Will?
The Ohio State Bar Association explains that a living will is “a legal document you can use to set forth your directions about the use or non-use of artificial life-sustaining support if you become terminally ill or permanently unconscious.”
Your living will can become effective if you cannot communicate your wishes on medical care AND if you are terminally ill or permanently unconscious. You are free to change your living will at any time as long as you remain mentally sound enough to do so, and your living will is going to take precedence over any decisions made by someone who you appoint to act as your agent if you create a healthcare power of attorney.
When you create a living will, it is up to you what you specifically want to include in it. You can specify that you do or do not want life-sustaining treatment such as CPR or a feeding tube. You can create a Do Not Resuscitate order making clear you want no extraordinary measures taken at all. You can request to die naturally, and/or can make clear that you want treatments such as a feeding tube to be withdrawn.
Dayton Physicians have a sample living will that you can take a look at in order to get an idea of what you may want to put in one, but this is a document that you absolutely should create only with help from an experienced attorney who can provide personalized advice on what your living will should include.
Why is Creating a Living Will so Important?
If you do not create a living will, then your loved ones are going to have to determine what kinds of care you actually would want to receive versus what kinds of care you want to decline. Depending upon what kinds of advanced directives you have created, such as whether you named a healthcare proxy or have a Do Not Resuscitate Order, your family may have no idea at all of what your preferences are for care. Your loved ones may also not agree on what you would want, and may not know who they should put in charge of making your decisions for you.
This can create confusion, stress, and guilt for your family and result in you being put into a bad situation as you get care you really don’t want. It is already a tragedy if something happens to leave you incapacitated, so don’t compound that tragedy by not having a plan.
Getting Help from A Cincinnati Incapacity Planning Lawyer
Zimmer Law Firm will work with you to make certain that you make a living will that will be enforced and that will address the necessary issues that matter when it comes to medical care. You don’t want to take any chances on not getting the care that you need, or on getting care that you do not want, so you should work with an experienced Cincinnati incapacity planning lawyer to get your advanced directives in place.
If you are interested in learning more about creating a living will or about any aspects of incapacity planning, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at 513.721.1513 to speak with a member of our legal team for personalized advice and assistance with your incapacity plan.