In Clarke County, Georgia a living will, also known as a "healthcare directive" is a document which lays out instructions for your family and your doctor concerning healthcare matters should you become so ill that you are unable to make or express such decisions.
This can be very helpful in avoiding disputes between family members who otherwise might not know what your wishes on this subject are.
For example, some people don't want to be kept on life support if they are in a vegetative state with no significant chance of recovery. Others, however, might prefer to be kept alive as long as humanly possible. 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 decision that the patient would never have wanted.
This can lead to fighting between loved ones, some of whom might want to keep the patient on life support, while others believe that he or she would not want to be kept alive in such a state. If the patient's wishes had been made clear beforehand in a legally-binding document, such infighting could be avoided.
How to Create A Living Will in Clarke County, Georgia
Before you begin, you should make it very 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 knows what to expect.
You then need to actually draft your living will. This can be made much easier if you have an experienced Clarke County, Georgia attorney who practices health law or wills and trusts help you. Even though a simple living will is not terribly complicated, having professional assistance is always advisable.
Generally, living wills need to follow the same formalities as testamentary wills (wills that dictate how one's property is to be distributed after death).
While these requirements are not identical between individual states, there are some common similarities. For example, both testamentary and living wills usually need to be witnessed and signed by 2 people who have no direct interest in your will.
Do I Need A Clarke County, Georgia Living Will Attorney?
While not absolutely necessary, a good estates attorney in Clarke County, Georgia can be very helpful in drafting a living will. A lawyer will understand the intricacies of state and local law, and can craft a document around those laws, to ensure that your wishes are followed, to the extent possible.