A living will in Washington County, Pennsylvania can further be referred to as a "healthcare directive." Whatever the name, it is a document that lays out a person's wishes with respect to their medical care, in case they become unable to make their own choices.
Making a living will can save your family a great deal of grief. There are some pretty terrible instances 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 disagreement, 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 considerable 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.
This can lead to disagreements 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 Washington County, Pennsylvania
Before you begin, you should make it extremely 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 actually draft the will. To be sure that it is valid, you should have the assistance of a Washington County, Pennsylvania attorney who specializes in wills.
In most states, a living will must follow all the protocols as testamentary wills (wills that dictate what is to be done with a person's property after their death).
These formalities vary from state to state, but wills normally have to be witnessed and signed by at least two people who do not have a direct interest in the matter. Furthermore, they should contain a clear statement indicating that the document is, in fact, a living will.
Do I Need A Washington County, Pennsylvania Living Will Attorney?
While not completely necessary, a seasoned estates attorney in Washington County, Pennsylvania 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 feasible.