A ‘living will’ is a legal document explaining your instructions regarding health care treatments. It informs family members and health care providers of your preferences if you are unable to speak for yourself. While it is commonly created as part of an estate plan, it may also function separately. This post provides information on living wills in Melrose, MA and does not replace hiring a qualified Massachusetts Estate Planner. For more information, please call John Tramontozzi, your local Massachusetts Estate Planning Attorney.
Purpose of Living Wills
Living wills enable you to specify decisions on treatment levels when your condition is dire, such as entering a vegetative state or suffering from a terminal condition. Some requirements for living wills may vary by state, so it is important to use a local attorney.
When Living Wills Take Effect
Living wills become active only when you are unable to speak for yourself and when your ultimate recovery is unlikely. Typically, a doctor must verify that you are in such a condition. A living will does not become active in other “less serious” events such as a heart attack. For situations where the outlook is not dire but you are not able to express your wishes, you may have a healthcare proxy, which allows a loved one to make the decisions for you. Keep in mind that these are two independent documents and apply to different scenarios. Combined, they are referred to as an advance health care directive.
Livings Wills for Melrose, MA
Living wills ensure that your preferences are honored. Its necessity can result from predetermined illnesses or completely unpredictable circumstances. It can lessen the burden on family members or stop family members from disputing over what to do. Keep in mind, it needs advance preparation and should be compiled when you are of sound mind.
*This information on living wills in Melrose, MA is shared for general reference only. Always consult with a Massachusetts Estate Planning Attorney for additional information and recommendations. You may contact John Tramontozzi for a free consultation.