A healthcare directive is a legal document that you can devise with the help of an estate planning attorney to specify who will make health care decisions on your behalf in the event that you are unable to make these decisions yourself. The person you name to make your health care decisions is referred to as an advocate or an agent.
Who Should I Name?
The question that estate planning attorneys are often asked by clients when preparing a healthcare directive is who they should name as an advocate. Ultimately, this is a personal decision that only you can make. However, there are some important factors that your attorney will want you to consider when making your decision:
-You should know the individual very well and make sure the person knows you well.
-The individual should be able to remain calm in a crisis and be able to make a rational decision based on your desires.
-The individual should have a clear understanding of how you would make the decision if you were capable of doing so.
-The individual shouldnot be afraid or hesitant to ask your doctors personal questions that may affect his or her decision-making.
-The individual should be able to communicate with your family about his or her decision.
Ultimately, the person you choose to make a medical decision on your behalf when you are unable to do so should be someone who knows you well and someone you trust. If you are having a difficult time naming an advocate, your estate planning attorney can provide you with guidance.
We Can Help You Devise a Healthcare Directive
For more information about devising a healthcare directive or to schedule a complimentary consultation with an estate planning attorney, please call Lifetime Legal at (805) 419-5290.