A living will in Brentwood, Tennessee can also 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.
A living will might prove essential in heading off painful and time-consuming disputes among family members. If your family has no clue as to how you would want a given situation to be handled, it's up to them to guess. Obviously, this can lead to severe disagreements. If family members know in advance what the patient wants, these disputes are far less likely.
For instance, many people would never want to be kept alive by artificial means if they are in a vegetative state with no chance of recovery. Some, on the other hand, might want to be kept alive indefinitely, because of the slight chance of a miraculous recovery. Obviously, this is a personal decision, and one choice is not "better" than the other. However, there is no middle ground between the two. You probably want the peace of mind that comes with knowing that, if such an issue comes up, your wishes (whatever they are) will be honored.
This can lead to arguments 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 Brentwood, Tennessee
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 knows what to expect.
You then need to actually draft your living will. This can be made much easier if you have an accomplished Brentwood, Tennessee attorney who practices health law or wills and trusts help you. Even though a simple living will is not terribly convoluted, having professional assistance is always advisable.
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).
While these protocols vary by state, there are a few elements that are quite common. For instance, in most states, wills have to be witnessed and signed by at least 2 people who have no direct stake in it. It's also necessary to avoid any disputes or confusion as to whether or not a particular document was intended to be a will. A clear statement to that effect should be the first paragraph in any type of will.
Do I Need A Brentwood, Tennessee Living Will Attorney?
While not strictly necessary, a brilliant estate-planning lawyer in Brentwood, Tennessee can be extremely helpful in the process of drafting a living will. An attorney will understand 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.