Advance Health Care Directives

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Advance Health Care Directives

Advance Health Care Directives

An Advance Health Care Directive (also referred to as a Medical Directive) is a document that gives instructions specifying what actions you want taken for your healthcare and your end-of-life decisions in the event you are no longer able to make these decisions for yourself.  This document also designates an agent to make medical decisions for you in the event you cannot make them for yourself.

Advance Health Care Directive Services

Advance Health Care Directives will appoint a person to make these decisions on your behalf. Your Advance Health Care Directive provides a clear declaration of your wishes to prolong your life or to deny or remove life-sustaining treatment. You can choose to request relief from pain, even if doing so hastens death. And a standard Advance Health Care Directive can also provide for any other wishes and directions you may have, including instructions about organ donation.

While most people would prefer to die in their own homes, terminally-ill patients often choose to die in the hospital, receiving ineffective treatments that they do not want or need. Family members can become entangled in unpleasant arguments about the best way to care for the patient. And the wishes of the dying person can be overlooked in all the confusion. This confusion can be eliminated with an Advance Health Care Directive.

Discussing your wishes and putting them in writing before you near the end is essential so loved ones can honor your requests. Planning ahead with an Advance Health Care Directive can give your family members peace of mind when the time comes to make health care decisions on your behalf. It lets everyone know what is important to you – and what is not.

The Law Offices of Eric A. Rudolph P.C. can help. An experienced California estate attorney can provide you with more information on preparing your Advance Health Care Directive.

Advance Health Care Directive Resources

Want to know the facts on Advance Health Care Directives? Read Attorney Eric A. Rudolph’s informative blog post: Advance Health Care Directive – What You Need To Know

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Medical Directives FAQs

Do i need a durable power of attorney?

Yes, everyone should have a Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA) for legal, financial and property matters. If you become incapacitated and are unable to manage your finances, a DPOA will be invaluable to your loved ones. If you are incapacitated, without a DPOA your loved ones will have to go to court to be named your conservator. But if you already have a DPOA in place, you will avoid the need for a conservatorship (the same way a living trust avoids probate). Have an experienced estate planning attorney prepare your DPOA.

What is the difference between a springing durable power of attorney and an immediate durable power of attorney?

A “Springing Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA)” only takes effect upon a doctor’s declaration of your incapacity (which means you lack the cognitive ability to take care of your affairs). Until your DPOA agent has a written declaration from a doctor, your Springing DPOA does not take effect. An “Immediate DPOA” is exactly what you think it is – it takes effect immediately upon signing and does not require a doctor’s written declaration to take effect, which means your DPOA agent can act on your behalf immediately regardless of your incapacity.

Is an advanced health care directive the same as a living will or durable power of attorney for health care?

In California, the document that names an agent to make your medical decisions is called an “Advance Health Care Directive (AHCD)”. In other states, this document is often referred to as a “Living Will” or “DPOA for Health Care”. If you live in California you should have AHCD, which is the document that allows you to name an agent for health care decisions and designate your health care and end-of-life decisions. If you do not have an AHCD and you are unable to make medical decisions for yourself, your loved ones will need to go to court and be appointed the conservator of your person.

What documents should i have if i become incapacitated?

If you become incapacitated you should already have your Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA) and Advance Health Care Directive (AHCD). You DPOA allows your agent to manage your legal, financial and property matters while your AHCD allows your agent to make medical decisions for you. If you do not have a DPOA and AHCD and you become incapacitated it will be too late to create these documents and it will be necessary for your loved ones to go to court to be named your conservator. Having a DPOA and AHCD already in place will avoid the need for a conservatorship.

Eric A Rudolph Practice Areas

Preparing the best estate plan for your individual needs.

Estate Planning Attorney, Eric A. Rudolph, Esq. proudly offers a full range of specialized estate planning and advanced health care directive services. His dedicated guidance has helped many Palm Springs families, LGBTQ, couples and individuals avoid financial and legal pitfalls.

Advance Health Care Directive Attorney in Palm Springs, Ca

The Law Offices of Eric A. Rudolph P.C. provides advance health care directive guidance to the desert community including: Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, La Quinta, Indio, Bermuda Dunes, Thousand Palms and surrounding Coachella Valley areas.

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Advance Health Care Directives Attorney in Palm Springs

Palm Springs Estate Planning Attorney

The Law Offices of Eric A. Rudolph P.C.


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