One of the most complicated legal issues that can arise for any California resident and their families is being incapacitated and having to be placed on life support. A living will can provide the family some indication of what to do in the event of this occurrence, as it effectively contains the wishes of the victim. This should be a part of any comprehensive estate plan. However, it can also be established as a single document as well. The problem is that too many people do not take this legal step before it occurs.
How a living will is applied
A living will, also known as an advance medical directive, must be stated in writing, typically accomplished by filling out a standard form that indicates a choice of being kept alive by a machine or group of machines when unable to communicate. They include the pertinent information and the name of an attorney-in-fact for medical purposes. If a hospital does not have one on file they will proceed according to state law.
Types of medical issues
There are several types of medical conditions where an advance medical directive can be essential. Injuries that could leave an individual incapacitated include but are not limited to any type of paralysis, traumatic brain injury, seizures, and other assorted head damage that can easily happen in an automobile accident or slip-and-fall incident. If a hospital or nursing facility does not have a living will on file they will proceed according to California rules and regulations.
Remember that it is always best to be prepared for any calamity that may occur in life. This is the purpose of a living will in general and a comprehensive estate plan as well.