WHAT ARE ADVANCE HEALTH CARE DIRECTIVES?
March 3, 2014
Sometimes a highly publicized legal case can provide an example that resonates throughout society. This type of scenario took place several years ago with a young woman named Terri Schiavo at the center.
Schiavo fell into a vegetative state after suffering full cardiac arrest at the age of 26. She was subsequently kept alive via the use of feeding tubes for years after this horrific event occurred.
After eight years her husband decided that he would like to see the use of the feeding tubes discontinued. The woman's parents were not in agreement, and a legal battle resulted that raged on for some seven years.
This case highlights the reason why it is important to execute documents called advance health care directives as part of a comprehensive estate plan. The two directives that are widely utilized are the living will and durable medical power of attorney.
With a living will you state whether or not you would want to be kept alive indefinitely via the use of artificial means. If Terri Schiavo would have executed one of these documents all the legal troubles between her loved ones could have been avoided.
The durable medical power of attorney is used to name someone who you would be empowering to make health care decisions in your behalf should you become unable to make them for yourself.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. If you're ready to take the appropriate steps to assert your wishes and preserve harmony among your family members simply take a moment to arrange for a consultation with a licensed, experienced Riverside estate planning lawyer.