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The role of living wills in elder law

by | Jan 14, 2020 | Elder Law

It is pretty normal to have strong feelings about medical treatments, care and interventions. Because of those feelings, people in Lake Charles usually feel that it is important to make their own health care decisions. But what happens when someone is not in the position to make those choices? Here is where elder law may come into play.

A living will is an essential part of estate planning, especially for elderly men and women. Not to be confused with a will used for distributing property upon one’s death, a living will outlines preferences for medical treatments. Should that person become incapacitated or otherwise unable to make his or her own decisions, a designated individual can consult the living will and make decisions on the patient’s behalf.

People often choose to include their wishes regarding medical treatments that are meant to prolong life for patients with irreversible or terminal conditions. Someone can choose to limit those types of treatments, including things like invasive administration for hydration or nutrition. Measures that only provide necessary comfort are generally not found in found in living wills.

Living wills can be revoked at any time and for any reason. This means that people can revoke and create new living wills if they change their minds on certain treatments. It is also important that these documents are executed correctly so that they are enforceable under elder law. To avoid creating a living will that might not be valid, it could be helpful to speak with an experienced attorney in Lake Charles.