Living wills are a bit of a misnomer because they are not wills. Instead, a living will (also known as a healthcare directive or directive to physicians) tells a doctor your medical treatment preferences in case you are ill and unable to express them yourself. Living wills may cover instructions regarding a natural death unattended by artificial life support, organ donation and medical techniques, such as tube feeding and resuscitation. Inheritance Network suggests that you discuss your living will and your options with your family and doctor and that you consider giving a copy of the living will to your doctor.
Along with a living will, Inheritance Network recommends that you consider a durable health care power of attorney (also known as a health care proxy). A durable health care power of attorney allows you to appoint someone to make health care decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated. As its names suggests, it is a variation of a durable power of attorney. Like a will, a living will and a durable health care power of attorney must follow certain legal formalities and Inheritance Network urges professional assistance. Please have our Network contact you to learn more about preparing your living will and durable health care power of attorney.
Don't forget that advances in medicine happen every day. So, periodically review your living will and other estate planning documents.