Here at The Wade Law Firm, PLLC, Central Mississippi Family Law Attorney, we provide a wide range of services to support you through all of life’s most important legal scenarios. Perhaps the most important time of life that requires legal expertise is the end of life. When we talk about life planning, most people immediately think of final wills – who gets what after you pass away. Just as important though, is making sure that your wishes are followed during the final days before you pass away.
What happens to your home if you spend your last days in the hospital? What about your children and relatives? What if you are in the hospital and unable to make decisions for yourself? Who will make important medical and financial decisions on your behalf? These aren’t questions you want to think about, but it is necessary to have a plan.
Often times, people who are seriously ill may have reduced mental capacity. You’ll have to take steps ahead of time to make sure that this possibility doesn’t negatively affect your final wishes.
Here are a few common life planning devices that will help you make sure your health care desires are followed by both medical professionals and your friends and family.
Health Care Directives/Power of Attorney/Living Will
Health Care Directive, Health Care Power of Attorney and Living Will are commonly interchanged. Regardless of the term used, this is a legal device that allow a person to make decisions about their health care before they are actually sick and/or mentally incapacitated. A properly crafted health care directive designates your health care agent. You may designate one of your adult children or spouse as the person legally allowed to make decisions in your place. If you are mentally unable to decide how to treat your illness, this person will have the power to make decisions in your best interests. Your directive authorizes your agent to consult with your treating physicians about your care to ensure the course of treatment, medication, and life sustaining measures.
Other reasons for a health care directive includes restriction on medical treatment due to your religious beliefs. For example, some people may have religious reasons to refuse a blood transfusion. With a health care directive, you can ensure that you don’t receive a blood transfusion even if you’re unconscious when at the hospital.
Some people, especially those of advanced age, may be ready to transition or die naturally. For these people, a do-not-resuscitate order is an option. This order will direct health care professionals to not take extreme measures to try to revive you if you are seriously ill or near passing. For example, they may not use CPR or a ventilator to try to restart your breathing or your heart. This is just another option available to you as you consider your legal life planning.
As you can see, the issues covered by these legal devices are very important to ensuring that your final wishes are granted. While it’s not the most fun thing to do, life planning is extremely important for your future requests as well as your loved ones.
If you would like to learn more, contact the The Wade Law Firm, PLLC today. Jackson, MS Attorney Vangela M. Wade has over 18 years of legal experience guiding countless clients through the process of life planning and other practice areas. Give us a call at 601.790.0043 or contact us online to discuss your legal matters in a confidential, affordable consultation.