A living will in South Portland, Maine, occasionally referred to as a "healthcare directive" is a legal document instructing those concerned (family, doctors, etc.) on how you want to be viewed if you become unable to make your wishes known due to physical or mental incapacity.
This can be very helpful in avoiding disagreements between family members who otherwise might not know what your wishes on this subject are.
For instance, 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 permitted. 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 determination that the patient would never have wanted.
This can lead to conflicts 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 prevented.
How to Create A Living Will in South Portland, Maine
Of course, your loved ones should be involved in the process. They can't make these decisions for you, but they'll likely be more willing to accept your decisions if they feel that their voices were heard. In any event, if your family understands what to expect when your living will is implemented, the process will probably be easier.
The next step in the process is to actually write the living will. While you might be able to draft a valid living will by yourself, to ensure that no problems come up after it's too late, you should seek the counsel of a South Portland, Maine attorney who drafts wills.
In most states, a living will must follow all the formalities as testamentary wills (wills that dictate what is to be done with a person's property after their death).
In general, wills of any type (testamentary or living) have to be signed by 2 people who witnessed it being signed by the person who the will is for. They must also contain a clear provision saying what they actually are (so there can be no confusion as to whether or not a certain document was intended to be a will).
Do I Need A South Portland, Maine Living Will Attorney?
The assistance of a reputable South Portland, Maine attorney is never a bad idea, even if it's not absolutely necessary. There are usually nuances in state and local law on this subject which laypersons will not be aware of, but with which an attorney will be intimately familiar.