What is Healthcare Power of Attorney in Chandler Arizona and Is it Right for You?
Everything you need to know about a healthcare power of attorney in Chandler, Arizona. And here’s how to know if the decision is right for you.
If living through a global pandemic has taught us anything, it's that life is unpredictable. You can be as careful as possible and still not anticipate when you'll get sick or injured. Do you need a healthcare power of attorney in Chandler, Arizona?
Only between 18% and 36% of Americans have a healthcare power of attorney, sometimes referred to as an advanced directive, in place should it be needed.
The truth is that none of us wants to imagine ourselves in a situation where we're unable to make medical decisions for ourselves. Yet, what happens if you're in a position where you can't decide things for yourself?
No matter how many loved ones surround you, they need a medical power of attorney to make those hard decisions on your behalf, should it be necessary.
So, while incapacity planning sounds rather bleak, it's a necessary reality as you establish your estate plans. Read on to learn more about healthcare power of attorney paperwork and why it's important for you to do.
What Is a Healthcare Power of Attorney in Chandler?
A healthcare power of attorney, sometimes referred to as a medical advanced directive, is a legal document written up for you that gives another person the authority to make decisions about your medical care.
A healthcare power of attorney is one kind of advanced directive. Advanced directives include:
- A durable power of attorney for health care
- A living will
- A do-not-resuscitate declaration
- POLST (Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment)
- Organ and tissue donation
When you reference a healthcare power of attorney, it can be referring to the actual legal document and the person who's authorized in the document.
The healthcare power of attorney gives a person the authority to speak, get information, decide on, and make decisions for someone else related to their medical care if they're unable to make decisions themselves.
Understanding Healthcare Power of Attorney
When a person has a healthcare power of attorney (HCPA) written, they are giving a healthcare proxy to another person. When a person becomes ill or injured and can't speak for themselves, their healthcare proxy speaks and makes decisions on their behalf.
When you give someone the right to be your HCPA, they have the authority to speak to medical professionals who are treating you. They should understand what your wishes would likely be.
They can prevent medical professionals from giving you unwanted treatments or life-sustaining procedures that you would refuse if you were able.
You're giving the HCPA the authority to make any medical decisions for you when you're unable. The HCPA doesn't have to be a relative. It should be someone you trust and know would follow your prescribed wishes.
Why You Want and Need a Healthcare Power of Attorney
There are plenty of people who might scoff at the idea of needing a healthcare power of attorney. If they feel like they're perfectly healthy and perhaps young, why would they need one?
HCPA for the Living
Nobody wants to imagine themselves sick, injured, in pain, where you're unable to think, move, or even speak.
It can be comforting to know there is a person who's acting on your behalf if you found yourself in this position. You might recover from whatever left you in that position.
It can still be nice to know when you are unable someone is making informed decisions for you.
HCPA for Those Facing Death
You can't control or plan when you will be facing death. But you might have opinions about what treatments or care you would want or not want when you're there.
It's a hard spot for any person to face, yet knowing there is an HCPA making sure your dying wishes are followed can be a comfort to not only the person dying but also those closest to them.
How Does a Healthcare Power of Attorney Work?
You can visit with your attorney as you're doing overall estate planning and include a healthcare power of attorney as part of your estate.
The HCPA only becomes active if you find yourself unable to make the decisions yourself.
It's good to talk ahead of time with this person about your wishes and expectations, so they feel confident doing what you would want should they need to step in and act as your medical proxy.
Choosing a Healthcare Power of Attorney
While it's uncomfortable for some to imagine being unable to act on their own behalf, it's also an important part of advocating for yourself to name a healthcare power of attorney.
It should give you comfort to know there is a person who you're close to and trust ready to step in for you.
You can choose anyone to be your HCPA. But it's obvious you want someone with whom you have implicit trust in making decisions on your behalf.
You should also make sure the people closest to you know and understand who you've selected as your HCPA and what kind of direction you've provided for them.
You can also set up your healthcare power of attorney with an alternate person, in the event the first-named POA is unavailable.
Even if you have other estate planning documents, including a power of attorney, it's important to have a healthcare power of attorney. You also want to have this done by someone who knows the laws of your state.
Get Your Healthcare Power of Attorney Drawn Up and Protect Your Interests
While nobody likes to imagine being in a position where they might need a healthcare power of attorney, the reality is that if you need it, it's important to have it in place. Once you need one, it's too late to get it handled.
If you need help with any estate planning or power of attorney in Arizona, including creating a healthcare power of attorney, Citadel Law Firm can help. Contact us today to set up your free consultation, click here or call (480)565-8020.
Read our blog article in Google my business as well, click here.