The importance of having advance care directives

On Behalf of | Mar 20, 2024 | Estate Planning

Estate plans aren’t the most popular topic, but everyone in Michigan should have one. Some people think this entails only having a will, but there’s much more to it than that. Advance directives are crucial legal documents to include in your plan.

Understanding advance directives

Advance directives are estate planning documents that instruct doctors and other providers about the type of care you want if you’re ever incapacitated. If you don’t have these tools and are unable to voice your wishes due to a severe illness or disability, you can’t receive the type of care you would otherwise want.

When to have advance directives

It’s a common misconception that you only need advance directives when you’re chronically or terminally ill. However, regardless of age, everyone can benefit from having them as in their estate plan. This is because life is uncertain, and anyone can become sick or severely injured at any time, sometimes without warning.

Types of advance directives

You can include different types of advance directives in your estate plan. A living will is one of the most popular and allows you to declare the type of care you want if you are in a permanent vegetative state or terminally ill. It lets you state whether you want lifesaving measures or you don’t wish to be resuscitated.

A medical power of attorney lets you choose an agent to handle your healthcare matters if you can’t voice them. Your doctor must certify that you cannot make your own medical decisions before the document can be considered valid.

Advance directives can give you and your family peace of mind. You’ll know your wishes are honored and your loved ones won’t have to worry about making difficult decisions.