Living will


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Related to Living will: living trust, Durable power of attorney

Living will

A document specifying the kind of medical care a person wants-or does not want-in the event of terminal illness or incapacity.

Advance Directive

A legal document expressing a person's medical wishes in the event of his/her mental or physical incapacity. An advance directive is made while the director is still competent, and comes into effect at incapacity. An advance directive may state whether or not the director wishes to be placed on life support or to receive a particular treatment. It may or may not assign another party, usually a family member, to make these decisions as they come up. It is important to note that in this situation, an advance directive is not a power of attorney and neither allows the other party access to the assignor's finances, nor obliges him/her to pay for any treatment. See also: Proxy directive.

Living will.

A living will is a legal document that describes the type of medical treatment you want -- or don't want -- if you are terminally ill or unable to communicate your wishes.

Like wills that provide instructions about your assets, living wills must be signed and have two or more witnesses to be valid.

You can use a healthcare proxy or durable power of attorney for healthcare to authorize someone to act as your agent to ensure your wishes are followed. Because there are still unresolved questions about the extent of your agent's authority, it may be wise to get legal advice in preparing the documents.

References in periodicals archive ?
Of those, 29.3 percent completed living wills, 33.4 percent health care proxies and 32.2 percent were "undefined," meaning the type of advance directive wasn't specified or combined the two.
When an institution submits a proposed living will to the Fed and the FDIC, the institution itself designates the material that will be included in the publicly released section of the document, subject to the requirements and approval of the agencies.
"Make it clear to your family and your doctor that your proxy is the person you want to make potentially difficult decisions about how to interpret your living will." For practicality, your proxy needs to live near you, so he or she can meet with your doctors, and it makes sense to choose someone who shares your end-of-life morals and ethics.
1) The pilot version will be more informative for those completing a living will and would better express their care wishes than the commonly utilized format; and 2) The new format will provide surrogates and health care providers with clearer guidance when making health care decisions for the incapacitated adult patient.
Significant differences were observed between respondents of different ages for the questions about formalising the Living Will Document (LWD) before a notary (p<0.001) and whether a living will must assign a delegate person (p=0.048).
This is the going-out-of-business method planned in the living wills due July 1.
The living will is used if you become mentally incapable of making any decisions as you become unconscious or unfit.
Getting family members involved can help relieve some of the stress of drafting a living will, says Osbourne, and it may also prod your parents, brothers, sisters and others to draft their own living wills.
Such criticisms of the living will must be considered together with its benefits.
For Schiavo, "It's relatively easy to say that one lesson has to do with end-of-life directives, living wills, durable powers of attorney for health care - they go by many names, and each one means something a bit different.
It opposes living wills and aims to reverse the trend toward giving people greater control over their end-of-life care.