It can be difficult to think about the health care needs that you may face in the future, but it is useful for both you and your family to make the effort to have certain protections in place. By having the appropriate legal documents drafted, you can outline your wishes in case you are incapacitated or unable to make important medical decisions for yourself.
Through a health care power of attorney, you can better control what may happen to you by formalizing your desires for medical interventions, life saving measures and more. These could be important and essential additions to any existing estate plan.
What is a health care power of attorney?
In order to understand the importance of a health care power of attorney, you may need to understand the role of a living will. Through a living will, you are able to do the following:
- Outline the care you expect in case of incapacitation
- Identify the types of medical procedures you do or don't want
- Specify any life saving measures that you do or don't want
A living will can be very specific, or it can be quite general. You may find it easier to feel confident that others will honor your wishes if you are more specific in your living will. A health care power of attorney can cover things not mentioned in your living will, but your designated health care agent may not go against anything outlined in that document.
Choosing the right person to act as your health care agent can be a complex and difficult decision. You would be wise to think carefully about the person you choose, as this individual may have to make life-altering choices on your behalf. Whoever you decide would be best in this role should be willing to place your best interests and the honoring of your wishes above all else.
Additions to your estate plan
Many people mistakenly believe that all they need is a will. In reality, many people find that they could actually benefit from more than just a will by making additions such as trusts or powers of attorney to their estate plans. You have the right to decide what will happen to you, and a health care power of attorney can help you maintain control over your body in case of incapacitation.
You would be wise to speak with an experienced Arizona attorney regarding your options and your need for any additions to your existing estate plan. With the right legal guidance, you can be confident in your security and plans for the future.