5 Important Things to Know About Creating a Living Will in Arizona
There are important things to know before you create an Arizona Living Will. Our estate attorneys in Arizona can help.
Did you know that according to the American Psychological Association only 25% of Americans have a Living Will? The numbers are probably similar for Living Wills in Arizona. This means if you don't have one either, you are not alone.
However, creating a living will is necessary in case anything unexpected occurs. Our Estate Planning Attorneys are here to help you.
Read on to learn about five important things to know about creating a living will in Arizona.
1. Make your wishes clear
A living will is important because it can make out your wishes in the case of many circumstances. If you happen to come upon a difficult time, you can reduce the stress on you and your family by having a living will that clearly states your wishes.
A living will is also now as an advance directive. The living will will make clear details like the use of feeding tubes, your wishes for resuscitation, if you want to be on life support or not, and procedures that can prolong your life (life sustaining treatment). It will give clear guidance about your medical care and which medical treatment you want to be subject to.
All your wishes related to an end of life emergency should get listed. During a challenging time, your family will have comfort knowing your wishes are being met. This reduces the risk of your family becoming divided on certain measures as well. Having what we call a life care planning will reduce the burden on your loved ones.
2. Limit the Emotional Burden on your loved one
Not only can having a living will eliminate the chances of your family becoming divided, but it will also limit the emotional burden. In case something happens to you, decisions don't have to be made by other people. The emotional turmoil of deciding on the right medical attention can be devastating for families.
A Living Will is also usually drafted together with a health care power of attorney. Both your health care POA and your living will work together to express your wishes.
3. Have it properly drafted to avoid issues
You can draft a living will on your own, however it is not recommended. An Arizona living will is not just a form you can download from a site. Forms shouldn't decide your medical treatments or your comfort care. Arizona Living Wills are much more than just a form.
Most people don't know where to start when it comes to making a living will. This is why hiring a lawyer in Arizona to help you with the process is recommended. An attorney will help you protect your end end of life wishes before your death.
A lawyer can give you advice on your living will that is specific to your life. They will also be able to provide you with a living will questionnaire (not a living will form) that can help you get through the process easier.
Drafting your living will with a lawyer is beneficial in many ways. Law professionals can also share information with you regarding medical advice. This includes understanding details on issues that could come up in the future, or what could happen if you do not have a living will. If you authorize they can release your living will to any medical professionals in case your an emergency.
An attorney will draft all contingencies and have clear instructions in case you are unable to make decisions for yourself. It will give the person in charge of it resources to decide in your behalf when you become the patient.
4. Does a living will Arizona need to be witnessed and notarized?
It is important to sign your living will and have it notarized for it to valid. You should also consult your agents about your wishes to ensure that the agents in your living will understand them well.
Some doctors do not honor a living will if there is a lot of conflict between your family. This means speaking to the people involved in advance can only be beneficial. It is important to try to get everyone on the same page with your decision.
A Living Will should also have a date. It should also specify clearly who is the Principal and any other related parties. Having clear directives will avoid mistakes and give you peace of mind. If you decide to do your living will on your own please make sure to sign it in front of a notary public.
5. Check the Laws
It is important to check the laws in your area so that you know what is required when it comes to a living will. In some cases, you will need a health care power of attorney. If you do not have certain documents, you could run into issues.
That is why talking to an estate planning attorney to make sure that all your estate planning documents are properly drafted can make a huge difference. An estate planning attorney usually is also a probate lawyer, they can make sure that not only your living will is properly drafted, but all the documents that will help reduce the burden in your family. They will be able to assist you properly.
If you have a living will from another state it will not necessarily be valid in the state of Arizona. AZ has very specific laws. Most estate attorneys do offer a free consultation to review out of state documents.
Creating Your Living Will in Arizona
Creating your living will in Arizona is important whether you are healthy right now or not. A health problem can occur at any time and force your family to have to make difficult decisions in your behalf. Get them all on the same page in case of an emergency and also respect your wishes.
For advice on making a living will or to create a customized estate planning plan contact Citadel Law Firm today. Our estate planning attorneys in Chandler will be pleased to help you. Call (480)565-8020 or click here or below to schedule your free consultation today. Our law firm in Arizona is specialized in living wills and we will be pleased to help.