Living Wills And Powers Of Attorney: All You Need To Know

Posted on: 6 September 2017

Thinking about the loss of loved ones is nothing that anyone wants to think about. However, making end-of-life decisions is one of the most important discussions you need to have with those you love, for both them as well as yourself. As people age, these decisions become so important because having a plan in place makes the lives easier for everyone involved. However, it is also best that you have plans in place for yourself as well.

There are two documents that a person can have in place that will have important impacts as to his or her care; a living will and a power of attorney. These are two plans that will ensure that you or your loved one will be treated should he or she not be able to make their own medical decisions. However, these two plans work very differently. The following are the differences between a living will and a power of attorney:

The Living Will

A living will is a document that you write that states how you want to be cared for medically should you be unable to make those decisions on your own. Included in a living will are whether or not resuscitation is desired, all treatment made at the end of life, and any treatments that are unwanted.

The living will should be very specific as it will serve as your primary directive pertaining to your health care. However, it is important to note that no matter how specific your living will is, it will never be able to account for all possibilities when it comes to your healthcare, so a power of attorney is a great thing to have as well.

The Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is the rights granted to the person of your choice to make medical decisions on your behalf in the event of an emergency. Although your living will dictates how you wish to be treated, it is impossible to consider any and all possibilities that could put you into a position of inability to make decisions.

One important thing to keep in mind is that if your living will dictates one aspect that is not in agreement with your power of attorney, the living will takes priority. The person who is the power of attorney will then be the person who advises anything not addressed by the living will.

Both living wills and powers of attorney are very complex documents that will be referred to in the most important parts of one's life. It is crucial that you have your attorney help you create a plan for yourself and your loved ones to make the process less complicated.

Contact a law office like Wright Law Offices, PLLC for more information and assistance. 


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