A living will is a legal document specifying your wishes relating to life support. It informs your family members and doctors of your decisions in the event that you not able to communicate. It is usually created in an estate plan but may also function separately. This blog includes an overview of living wills in Massachusetts.

What Living Wills Include

Living wills allow you to indicate what types of treatments you wish to have or want not to have when your condition is dire,… such as requiring life support or experiencing a terminal illness. Some requirements for living wills may differ by state, so it is important to use a local attorney. Your attorney can also provide you with additional options.

When Living Wills Take Effect

Living wills become effective only when you are incapacitated AND your condition is dire. Normally, a doctor must verify that you are in such a state. It does not apply to other less serious medical conditions such as heart attacks. For scenarios where the prognosis is not severe but you are unable to express your wishes, you may have a health care proxy that designated another party to make decisions for you. These are two independent forms and are effective under separate situations. Together, they make up an advance health care directive.

Livings Wills for Massachusetts

Living wills ensure that your wishes are observed. Situations may result from predetermined illnesses or an entirely unpredictable circumstance. It can alleviate the burden on family members or prevent them from disputing over what to do. It is best to decide when you are in the right state of mind. This was an overview of living wills in Massachusetts and is published for general reference only. Please consult with an attorney for additional information and advice.