Living Wills and Durable Power of Attorneys: The Rarely Discussed, but Invaluable Estate Planning Documents

Most people understand the importance of having a last will and testament in place upon their death, but an estate plan (even a basic one) involves more than simply stating who will inherit your wealth.

For example, what happens if you are incapacitated and there are medical decisions that need to be made? Having a Health Care Proxy and a Living Will enable you to have a say about your care in the event you are unable to vocalize your preferences when necessary.

A Health Care Proxy and a Living Will can be signed as separate documents, or the provisions can be incorporated into a single document. The Living Will provisions typically express your desires relating to the use of life-sustaining and/or life-prolonging measures in circumstances where there is a limited chance of recovery. Health Care Proxy provisions, on the other hand, generally pertain to the broad array of health care decisions which may need to be made on your behalf in the event you are incapacitated and unable to make decisions for yourself.

Health Care Proxies and Living Wills (whether signed as separate documents or as a single one) can be an extremely important component of your estate plan. It is never too early to start planning for your future. If you have questions about these documents or any other part of the estate planning process, please feel free to contact J. Redmond Law. We are happy to work with you to ensure that your estate plan reflects your wishes.