5 Aspects You Should Consider When Creating a Living Will In Arizona
Arizona Living Wills: What Is It & How It Works?
Many people have never thought about creating a living will or understand why they need one. However, if something unexpected happens, a living will can be invaluable to ensure that your wishes are carried out and to ease the difficulty your family will be facing. Here are five important aspects to consider when creating a living will with your Arizona estate planning lawyer.
1. Make Your Wishes Clear
A living will is an important document because it enables you to write out your wishes and goals in case an unfortunate or unforeseen circumstance happens to you. If you become seriously injured or incapacitated, you can greatly reduce the stress and strain on your family by having a living will that clearly states what you want for your care.
Your living will function as an advance directive that details situations such as whether you want to have a feeding tube inserted, whether you want to be resuscitated, what types of life support you are comfortable with and which you want to decline, and whether your medical care team should perform life-sustaining procedures. Clear guidance regarding which types of medical care you want or don’t want can make your family’s decisions much easier.
2. How Your Living Will Can Reduce The Emotional Burden Of Your Loved Ones
Having a living will reduces the chances of your family becoming divided over extremely difficult medical decisions, such as whether to remove you from life support. This greatly reduces the emotional burden and distress they will face because you’ve already made those decisions in advance. The emotional turmoil and challenge of trying to make the right medical decisions can be devastating for families, especially when members disagree. Generally, your Mesa estate planning attorney will draft another document called healthcare power of attorney alongside your living will. This enables you to choose someone to make medical decisions on your behalf according to your living will.
3. Have Your Living Will Drafted Legally
Although you can draft a living will on your own, it’s not recommended because it’s not a form you can just download and fill in the blanks. Your medical care should not be determined by a generic form but by your values and wishes. Consulting with an experienced Gilbert estate planning lawyer is the best way to make sure that your will is legal and properly made so that it can be honored. Your attorney can give you advice and provide you with a questionnaire that will help you determine your goals and get through the process more easily.
Additionally, working with an attorney to draft a living will has other advantages. For example, your lawyer can be authorized to release your living will to a medical professional in case of an emergency. Your attorney will make sure that contingencies are considered and all instructions are clear in case you are unable to make decisions for yourself.
4. Ensure Your Living Will Is Signed & Notarized
Many people make their own living will or similar documents but fail to have them signed and notarized. Wills that are not notarized are not valid.
Be sure to communicate your wishes clearly to your agents and healthcare power of attorney after you have drafted your living will. Sometimes, medical professionals will not honor a living will if there is a lot of conflict between family members, so speaking to key family members in advance can help ensure that everyone understands your wishes, making it easier to get everyone on the same page.
Your living will should be dated and written clearly to avoid any misunderstandings. This will prevent mistakes and conflict while giving you peace of mind knowing that the details have been planned in advance.
5. Understand Applicable Laws
Working with an experienced Tempe estate planning lawyer can be crucial when it comes to understanding what is required of a valid living will. A reputable attorney will be up to date on all legal aspects and make sure that your living will is legally binding. Your attorney can reduce the burden on your family by assisting you with a valid and legal living will.
Note that a living will drafted in another state will not necessarily be valid in Arizona. If you have recently become an Arizona resident, consult with an estate planning lawyer to review your existing estate planning documents to verify that they align with Arizona’s specific requirements.
Create Your Living Will In Arizona
Even if you are healthy now, it’s important to have a living will. Health challenges and accidents can happen anytime, but drafting a living will in advance can prevent your family from having to make difficult decisions on your behalf and ensures that your wishes will be respected. Get customized advice and assistance from My AZ Lawyers when you contact us to begin the estate planning process! We are ready to help you understand all of your options and write legally binding documents that reflect your goals, wishes, and values. Contact us today to schedule your complimentary consultation.
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