Develop a healthcare plan in case you’re incapacitated

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2024 | Estate Planning

Preparing for potential incapacitation is a crucial estate planning step that you shouldn’t overlook. It involves making decisions now about the medical care you wish to receive if you become unable to communicate your preferences in the future due to illness, injury or advanced age.

Healthcare planning for incapacitation requires careful consideration. These tools serve distinct purposes to collectively better ensure that your healthcare wishes are respected and followed.

A living will

A living will outlines what type of medical care you will accept and what you always want to decline. It can detail preferences on issues such as resuscitation, mechanical ventilation and artificial nutrition and hydration. This document should be as detailed as possible so your medical care team fully understands your wishes about healthcare.

A durable power of attorney for healthcare

A durable power of attorney for healthcare grants the appointed agent the authority to make decisions on your behalf. They can handle a variety of tasks, including accessing medical records, speaking to healthcare providers and making end-of-life care decisions. This tool ensures someone can manage a wide range of healthcare-related issues, even in situations not explicitly anticipated in a living will.

Comprehensive estate planning

Creating these legal documents is only part of the estate planning. Clear communication with the appointed agent, family members and healthcare providers about one’s values, beliefs and healthcare preferences is equally essential. You’ll also need to look beyond a possible period of incapacitation by outlining your wishes for assets when you pass away.

Seeking legal guidance from someone familiar with estate planning can take the stress out of this process.



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