Living wills are an important aspect of estate planning. A living will is a document in which a person specifies what he or she wants to have happen when it comes to medical care in the event he or she loses the ability to make health care decisions. There are mistakes it can be important for people to steer clear of when it comes to these planning documents. Today, we’ll touch on three common ones.
Not having a living will
Some might think that living wills are only for the elderly or individuals with severe illnesses. However, people of any age or health level could experience an accident that suddenly leaves them with major, incapacitating, injuries. So, adults of all ages and health levels can benefit from having a living will, as it can leave them better prepared for the unexpected.
Not updating a living will as circumstances change
What stage of life people are in and what their health condition is can impact what particular desires they have when it comes to medical care and what kinds of medical care decisions would be likely to come up for them. So, what a person may want to have in his or her living will can change over time. Not updating a living will to reflect such changes could result in the document no longer being well-aligned with a person’s wishes and needs.
Attorneys can assist people with forming and updating living wills.
Having a “hidden” living will
A living will can’t serve its purposes if no one can find it when the instructions it contains are needed. So, it can be important for a person to keep key individuals, such as his or her health care proxy, informed as to where the living will is and how it can be accessed.