In Petersburg, Virginia a living will (also recognized as a "healthcare directive") is a document in which a person provides instructions for their own medical care, in the event that they become unable to make their own decisions, or unable to express them.
A living will can be extremely important in avoiding painful, expensive, and time-consuming disputes between your family members.
For example, many people state that they would not want to be kept alive by artificial means if they are in a vegetative state, and have no reasonable chance of recovering. Others, however, would like to be kept alive if they have any chance, no matter how small, of recovery. If your wishes on this matter aren't known, your doctor or family members might have no idea what you would have wanted, and may make a judgment that goes against your wishes.
If a person's preferences aren't known by his or her family, they might have to make an educated guess. Of course, with limited information, it's completely possible for 2 family members to come to two completely different conclusions, with no way of knowing which one is correct. Making your wishes known in advance can help you avoid all this.
How to Create A Living Will in Petersburg, Virginia
First of all, you should talk with your spouse/life partner and members of your immediate family, to discuss your wishes in this matter. If the directives in your living will ever become necessary, the process will go much smoother for your loved ones if there are as few surprises as possible.
You then need to actually draft your living will. This can be made much easier if you have an accomplished Petersburg, Virginia 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, the standards for holding a living will to be valid are the same as those required for an ordinary will, at least with respect to the formalities that must be followed.
While these requirements are not identical between individual states, there are some common similarities. For example, both testamentary and living wills normally need to be witnessed and signed by 2 people who have no direct interest in your will.
Do I Need A Petersburg, Virginia Living Will Attorney?
The help of a brilliant Petersburg, Virginia attorney is never a bad idea, even if it's not absolutely necessary. There are normally 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.