In Alameda, California a living will, also identified as a "healthcare directive" is a document which lays out directions for your family and your doctor regarding healthcare matters should you become so ill that you are unable to make or express such decisions.
Making a living will can save your family a great deal of grief. There are some pretty terrible cases that a living will can help you avoid. It's not uncommon for a patient to become incapacitated, leaving the doctors with only a few options. Members of your family might disagree over what you would want, leading to an extremely painful conflict, which could have been easily avoided if they'd simply known.
For instance, some people don't want to be kept on life support if they are in a vegetative state with no substantial chance of recovery. Others, however, might prefer to be kept alive as long as humanly feasible. Another person's wishes might be something in between. In any case, if the family doesn't know what their loved one's wishes are, they may have to guess, which could lead to them making a choice that the patient would never have wanted.
Even worse, individual family members might not be able to agree about what your wishes would be. Disagreements on a subject like this can cut very deep, and cause irreparable harm to family relations. If the patient's wishes are made clear beforehand, these disagreements can be prevented most of the time.
How to Create A Living Will in Alameda, California
Before you begin, you should make it quite clear to your family members what your wishes on this subject are. If it ever becomes necessary to implement a living will, the process will likely be simpler if your family already understands what to expect.
You should then go about drafting the will. This should almost always be done with the advice of a Alameda, California attorney who specializes in these matters.
In most states, the criteria for holding a living will to be valid are the same as those necessary for an ordinary will, at least with respect to the formalities that must be followed.
These formalities vary from state to state, but wills typically have to be witnessed and signed by at least two people who do not have a direct interest in the matter. Additionally, they should contain a clear statement indicating that the document is, in fact, a living will.
Do I Need A Alameda, California Living Will Attorney?
While not strictly necessary, a reliable estate-planning lawyer in Alameda, California can be extremely helpful in the process of drafting a living will. An attorney will know the intricacies of local law, and will help you draft a document that, to the extent possible, will ensure that your wishes with respect to your own healthcare are followed.