Should I Have a Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare?

It is important to plan ahead for the future, which means thinking about things like what will occur if you get sick or seriously injured. Although this is something that no one likes to consider, you need to make decisions on issues related to life-saving medical care when you are healthy. If you don’t, and something does happen to you, this can create a very bad situation for you and for your family members.

One of the best ways to protect yourself in the event that you become sick or injured in the future is to have a durable power of attorney for healthcare. A durable power of attorney can go along with an advanced medical directive so that you have the greatest amount of control over what types of life-saving medical care you will receive.

Why it is Important to Have a Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare

Healthcare technologies have advanced significantly in recent decades and it is possible to keep people alive even after serious and debilitating injuries or when a devastating and life-threatning illness has developed. Although living longer may seem like a good thing, quality of life also has to be considered. There are a great number of people who do not want to live if they no longer have control of their bodies and if they are too severely limited in their ability to function.

You need to carefully consider what conditions you would like to be kept alive under, and when you would prefer not to have extraordinary measures used to save your life.  You should provide detailed specifications in an advanced healthcare directive so there will be no confusion about your wishes and so doctors and care providers will immediately know how to respond when you come to the hospital and cannot speak for yourself. If you do not specify in advance what types of care you would, and would not, like to receive, then you could end up being kept alive when you do not want to be. You could also create problems for your family, who may feel guilt about making difficult decisions or who may disagree about what decisions are appropriate ones.

An advanced healthcare directive can provide many details about medical care, but it is not going to necessarily cover any possible future situation or eventuality. When you have a durable power of attorney for healthcare, this allows you to decide who should make decisions for you that are not specified in your advanced directive.

A durable power of attorney for healthcare is a grant of authority to someone to act on your behalf and to speak for you when you cannot make your own voice heard.  The person who you grant this authority to is your agent. You need to choose someone you trust to do the right thing as your agent.

A Las Vegas family law and estate planning lawyer can help you to create a durable power of attorney for healthcare and can otherwise assist you in estate planning. Call today to schedule a consultation with Pintar Albiston LLP to learn more.