If you become suddenly unconscious or otherwise incapacitated from a car accident, stroke, or a heart attack, for example, who will make the tough decisions regarding your care and ultimately your life? Well if you planned ahead and executed an advance health care directive, then the decision-maker will be the person you indicated in the directive.
Your Health Care Wishes Honored
An advance health care directive is essentially a power of attorney for health care. It generally takes effect when you become incapacitated and ends when and if you regain capacity. An advance health care directive gives you the power to make the tough decisions regarding your health care including whether or not to provide yourself with lifesaving measures such as artificial nutrition/hydration or mechanical ventilation.
Unburden Your Loved Ones
I highly recommend this basic estate planning document because not only do you have control over what happens to you, but just as important, you spare your loved ones the heartache and stress of making decisions that could affect your quality of life or affect whether you live or die. No one wants this responsibility.
Without a crystal ball to predict the outcome of your condition, it is a massive burden upon your loved ones to make your health care decisions. Decisions that could have lifelong effects. Often times people don't realize the importance of this document until they're in an emergency room having to make life or death decisions in the heat of the moment with only a tiny window of opportunity. By then, it's too late.
Avoid a Guardianship Proceeding
Without an advance health care directive, the people closest to you will have to reach a consensus as to who among them will be your surrogate and make health care decisions on your behalf. If any of them disagree with the selection of the surrogate or the surrogate's decision, then any of them can initiate guardianship proceedings in court. This is time consuming and a wasteful way to spend your hard-earned money. Not to mention that while the court proceeding drags on, you and your loved ones already suffer the consequences of the health care decisions that are the basis of the proceeding.
Your Trusted Honolulu Estate Planning Law Firm Can Help with Your Advance Health Care Directive
An advance health care directive gives you the power to decide what happens to you if you become incapacitated, removes the burden from your loved ones, and prevents time-consuming and costly family guardianship battles in court. Every adult should have an advance health care directive created in consideration of yourself and your loved ones. Bad things happen to good people every day. Don't wait until it's too late. Contact us today to get started.
This article is a service of the Law Office of Keoni Souza, LLC, an estate planning law firm in Honolulu, Hawaii. We don’t just draft documents; we ensure you make informed and empowered decisions about life and death, for yourself and the people you love. That's why we offer a Family Wealth Planning Session, ™ during which you will get more financially organized than you’ve ever been before, and make all the best choices for the people you love. You can begin by contacting our office today to schedule a Family Wealth Planning Session and mention this article to find out how to get this $750 session at no charge.
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