Estate planning is a smart step for everyone in Ohio, regardless of income level, health status or the size of an estate. However, many people make the mistake of assuming that all they need in their estate plan is a will. In reality, you can use many other tools to complete your estate plan and provide you with security and protection.
One of the tools you may consider is a living will. This not really a will, but rather, it is a document that allows you to have a say in the type of health care you may need in case of incapacitation in the future. This step could provide you with peace of mind, as well as save your loved ones from having to make difficult decisions on your behalf.
What should be in your living will?
The terms of your living will depend on your needs, specific goals for your health care and various other factors. Like other estate planning documents, you can custom-tailor this document and design it according to what you want. Some people think that a living will only expresses a person's wishes for withholding treatment, but that is not always the case. If you are thinking about this important addition to your estate plan, consider the following:
- Through a living will, you will be able to ask for certain types of treatment while refusing others.
- Many people find it beneficial to also draft medical powers of attorney as well to cover issues not expressly stated in a living will.
- Living wills often involve complex medical issues, and it can be beneficial to speak with a medical professional when making these important decisions.
If you do not have a living will or other types of medical directives as part of your estate plan, it may be prudent to consider how these documents can benefit you.
Your complete estate plan
As you draft an estate plan and make choices that can impact your future, you may find it helpful to start with a complete evaluation of your case. By working closely with an experienced estate-planning attorney, you can learn more about the right steps for you and the appropriate course of action necessary to provide the security you deserve.
Making choices regarding your health care in the future may seem like a daunting prospect, but you do not have to make these sensitive decisions without support and counsel.