As an estate planning attorney, one of the questions we are asked is, “what is an advance directive?” This term will come up several times as you plan your estate and it helps to have an understanding of what it is.
Basically, an advance directive is a type of living will that spell out your wishes and desires in relation to medical treatments when you are nearing end of life.
However, it is important to know that an advanced directive is not used in place of you making your own medical decisions. If you can make decisions on your own, you will.
An advance directive is only used when you are unable to make medical decisions on your own or you fall into the state’ living will law, which commonly happens when you are permanently unconscious.
If you would like to learn more about an advance directive, our estate planning attorney in NYC is ready to help – give Morgan Legal Group PC a call today.
Estate Planning Attorney: What Advance Directives Do
There are several types of advance directives available and knowing which one you need can help you make sure your wishes are followed. Guidance from an experienced estate planning attorney is always recommended.
Two of the most common types of advance directives include the durable power of attorney and the living will.
Before you can choose an advance directive for your situation, you need to have a better understanding of what exactly the advance directive does.
For starters, an advance directive will include instructions about health care decisions. For example, if you did not want to be resuscitated, this would be included within your advance directive.
You will find that your advance directive allows you to make decisions about your health in the event you cannot make a decision at the time. For example, your directive can document steps to be taken should you develop dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
Lastly, if you suffer from mental illness or you expect any problems to arise with mental illness, you can document how you want your medical decisions to be handled if you are unable to make them due to a psychiatric illness. (This type of advanced directive is referred to as a psychiatric care directive.)
Tip: It is important that you have all medical and advance directives written out and legally documented. While an oral advanced directive may be allowed, it is best to have the information on paper to ensure no issues arise.
Call Today to Speak with Our Estate Planning Attorney
An advanced directive is two-fold in that it allows you to keep power of your medical decisions and it guides others in knowing what you want, even if you are unable to make a decision at that moment.
Working with a skilled and experienced estate planning attorney in NYC is vital as advanced directives are complex. It is not recommended that you explore an advanced directive on your own.
If you would like to learn more about planning your estate or creating an advanced directive, call Morgan Legal Group PC today at 212-561-4299.