As we age, our desires regarding our end-of-life care often become significantly more defined. For some, when all brain activity stops is the right time to stop any medical treatments keeping the body alive–for others, it is important to continue care for as long as possible.
However, many of us never get around to telling our families and our doctors what our wishes may be. As seen in several intense courtroom battles since the turn of the century, this can lead to emotionally difficult and financially draining courtroom battles if family members have opposite beliefs about what those wishes were–to say nothing of the spectacle the individual at the center of attention is put through.
What Can You Do?
Such cases have encouraged hundreds of thousands of Americans to seek a sure answer–one they have found in an Advance Healthcare Directive. Known also as a living will, a healthcare directive is an essential part of a complete estate plan. It enables you to designate a health care agent to make medical decisions for you if you are unable to do so, and gives them your directions for how you want your care handled in certain circumstances.
It is important that your family and your doctors are fully informed of your choices. It allows your health care agent to more effectively carry out your wishes despite the opinions of reluctant family members, as well as to remove any shreds of doubt about your decision. It’s important, too, that you give a copy of your healthcare directive to your doctors to have in your medical file; you want them to have easy access to it if they need it.
Don’t be one of the growing numbers of people whose wishes for end of life treatment are unknown or ignored.
If you’d like to learn more about advance healthcare directives or any other aspect of estate planning, call our office today to schedule a time for us to sit down and talk. Call us today at 612-206-3701 or reach out via our online contact form and mention this article.
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