THREE ADVANCED HEALTH CARE DOCUMENTS YOU NEED TO INCLUDE IN YOUR ESTATE PLAN
Decisions about your health care are some of the most important decisions you will ever make.
You shouldn’t put off making plans until you are unable to assert your wishes. Including health care documents in your estate plan can ensure your decisions are always your choice, even if you cannot speak for yourself.
Health care documents that clearly state your wishes should be included in your comprehensive estate plan. Here are three documents you need to include in your estate plan to ensure your wishes are respected:
Health Care Directive
This document allows you to name a health care surrogate. This will be the individual who you grant the authority to make certain decisions on your behalf. A health care surrogate may also be called a health care agent.
In your Directive, you can include specific instructions on the health care measures you desire if you are unable to make decisions for yourself or if you choose to have someone act on your behalf immediately. These are life and death decisions so you should make sure your agent is someone you trust. Work closely with an Estate Planning attorney to ensure your Directive provides clear guidelines for your agent to follow.
Your health care surrogate will need access to your medical records in order to make educated decisions about your care. To do this, your surrogate will need a HIPAA authorization. This will ensure he or she has access to your medical records from HIPAA-covered health care providers.
Living Will Declaration
A Living Will provides specific guidelines for your end of life care. While your Health Care Directive can include provisions for your surrogate to make certain decisions about your ongoing health care, a Living Will tells your surrogate how you would like those decisions made. Decisions such as if and when you want life support to be removed, whether you would want hydration and nutrition and what kind of care choices should be made for you, if you cannot make them for yourself. These types of absolute decisions about your life should be included in a Living Will for extra protection and assurance that your desires will be known and honored.
These documents, if carefully crafted, will help you express and enforce your health care wishes, even if you cannot speak for yourself. If you want to ensure your preferences for your ongoing and end of life care are respected, contact us to discuss your options today.
Kira Doyle Law can help you articulate and legally protect your health care wishes and preferences. We can guide you to create and complete these very important health care documents so you can have the peace of mind of knowing your family will make the right choices for you, if you cannot.
Need Legal Assistance?
At Kira Doyle Law we ensure you make informed and empowered decisions about life and death, for yourself and the people you love. If you would like to talk with an experienced Estate Planning attorney at Kira Doyle Law, please call our office in St. Petersburg, FL, at (727) 537-6818.