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Heritage Tree LogoWhat You Need to Know About Advance Healthcare Directives in Pennsylvania

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Of course, planning for incapacitation isn’t at the top of anyone’s list, in terms of things they truly want to do. However, planning for this should be at the top of the list regarding things you should do. Unfortunately, oftentimes, many people will fail to do so and it creates a complicated situation down the road. One of the most important things you can do is to create an advance healthcare directive in your lifetime. Please continue reading and speak with our Pennsylvania estate planning attorneys to learn more about advance healthcare directives and how creating one may benefit you in the long run. Here are some of the questions you may have:

Why should I create an dvance healthcare directive?

By creating an advance healthcare directive, you help ensure that you appoint a trusted individual who can make certain critical medical care decisions on your behalf. This person should understand your wishes and act in accordance with those wishes. Advance healthcare directives may include living wills and healthcare powers of attorney in Pennsylvania.

What is a living will and how may it help me?

Creating a living will is something that everyone should do before it is too late. Creating a living will allows individuals to clearly state which types of medical treatments they wish to receive, and which types of treatments they do not want to receive. Part of creating a living will is appointing a healthcare agent who will tell doctors what to do, and what not to do, in accordance with your wishes. For instance, many people can state whether they would, or would not, like to receive ventilators, feeding tubes, and more, in their living will.

Why should I create a durable healthcare power of attorney?

A durable healthcare power of attorney essentially allows someone to appoint a trusted individual to make key medical decisions on their behalf, however, these powers of attorney only take effect once a treating doctor determines that the individual can no longer make medical decisions on his or her own. This is when the agent’s responsibilities take effect.

What is the Pennsylvania Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment?

A Pennsylvania Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) is a document that prepares an individual for a life-threatening or unexpected medical crisis. For your POLST to be considered valid and legally enforceable, you must have it signed by a health care provider, your healthcare agent, and yourself.

If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to speak with our knowledgeable Pennsylvania estate planning attorneys today.


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