Living Will forms?

I have a friend who wishes to fill out a living will, and apparently has never heard of google. First site I found that doesn’t seem like a scam is- http://www.hcdecisions.org/instructions.asp

Is this really all that needs to be done? What is listed on the site? Or is there more to it? I don’t want to steer them wrong on this.

I think you might ask a lawyer…

The important question to ask when completing such a document is “is anyone going to fight this?” As long as they have a clear guidance, doctors will usually comply with advance authorizations. If there is any likelyhood that they will receive mixed guidance (i.e., your mother comes in screaming that you would never authorize such a thing and it must be a fake), then you need a lawyer. The fact is that if you don’t completely understand all of the legal and ethical issues behind it, you should consult a lawyer (with experience in the field) before signing such a document anyway.

Actually, the other important question to ask is “do I really want to do this?” IANAL.

You might try contacting your local Hemlock Society chapter.

I’m under the impression a Living Will isn’t really binding in the way a DNR order is. I wanted to put a copy of my Living Will on file at my college when I was there and they #1) had no idea what I was talking about and #2) when it was explained to them didn’t want anything to do with it. The best thing you can do is to make your wishes known to friends and family and hope they respect your wishes.

There are two documents which often fall under the heading of “living will.” One is instructions to a physician as to what medical actions one wants taken in the event one is legally incapacitated. In Wisconsin this is called IIRC an advance directive to physicians. The other is a document giving power to a specific person to make medical decisions in the event of one’s legal incapacity. In WI this is a durable power of attorney for health care. One should have one of these documents or the other, but not both.

Depending on the laws of your state, the existence of these documents eliminates or at least severely limits the ability of any other party to act on your behalf. You can check with the bar association in your state for information on how to get the statutory form for your state.

You should leave copies of these documents with the person you choose to make your decisions, with your primary physician and, if you are going to be hospitalized, with the hospital. You should also keep a set in your car.

IANAL and this is not legal advice.