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Here’s Why You Need a Living Will, Especially Now

We’re living in unprecedented times. It’s a smart idea to create your living will and appoint a healthcare power of attorney.

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Most of us know about how important it is to have a last will and testament that determines who gets your personal belongings when you pass away. But you may not be as familiar with another type of will—namely, a living will. 

Serious question: Have you protected your family with a living will? This directive serves you while you’re alive, but are unable to communicate your medical care wishes due to being incapacitated.

Imagine having a stroke or a traumatic brain injury that leaves you comatose and unable to speak with others. How will your loved ones or doctors know what measures you want used or taken in your treatment? You can’t give consent in a state such as that. So, the living will is there to protect you when you can’t speak for yourself medically.

We recommend getting your living will set up as soon as possible. And it’s quick: Our attorneys can do it for you in less than an hour.

Yes, this isn’t the most pleasant subject, so it’s an easy task to put off. However, you don’t want to wait until it’s too late, when you’re unable to tell them how you want your doctors to take care of you.

What issues does a living will cover?

Some of you may remember a famous case that captured the headlines in 2005 involving a woman named Terry Schiavo. She had been in a persistent vegetative state since 1990 and her husband, Michael Schiavo, said that his wife wouldn’t have wished for her life to be prolonged by machines, so he argued to have her feeding tube removed. 

Terry’s parents, Robert and Mary Schindler, disputed Michael’s claim, and the case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Had Terry had a living will, the issue would have been handled much quicker and would have truly covered her explicit wishes regarding treatment instead of the interpretations of her husband and her parents.

To that end, let’s look at what a living will actually covers:

Why might you want a living will?

Now that you know what living wills are and what they cover, let’s discuss the reasons why a living will is something you need. For those of us age 18 and over, the most common reasons you might need a living will include:

In addition, there are two other things to consider. With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, many people have found themselves suddenly dealing with family who’ve been diagnosed and who are in the hospital unable to communicate. You should also consider a living will because it’ll keep your family from having to make heart-wrenching decisions. They possibly don’t know what you’d want and this is the best way to make that known. Having a living will can also prevent your family from incurring huge medical bills should you be placed on life support or other extraordinary measures without the ability to express your wishes.

Some people may be concerned about having a living will out of fear that they won’t receive the full range of medical care. It may be helpful to know that your living will only gets used when you’ve been medically diagnosed as unconscious or incapacitated by multiple doctors. If you change your mind about what you’ve chosen in your living will, then you can change it or revoke it. 

It’s easy to set up your living will. Don’t wait for peace of mind that you could have today.

We’re living in unprecedented times. It’s a smart idea to create your living will and appoint a healthcare power of attorney.

While everyone should have a living will, during COVID-19, you especially must have a living will, if you’re in a high-risk group:

Smedley Law Group makes it super easy for you to acquire your living will. Here’s how easy it is:

1. We’ll send you a living will questionnaire to fill out.

2. Return the form to us with payment.

3. We’ll create the living will.

4. We’ll review and finalize your living will with you via a Zoom video call.

And the best part?

There’s no guesswork for you. We’ll work with you through the entire process. 

And if you already have a living will, we can review and update it. 

Contact the Compassionate Family Law Attorneys at Smedley Law Group, P.C. in Woodbury, NJ Today

If you need assistance with a living will or an estate law matter, including wills and estate litigation and administration, you’ll need to speak with a qualified attorney. The New Jersey family law attorneys at Smedley Law Group, P.C. represent clients throughout the state, including West Deptford, Woodbury Heights, Runnemede, and Westville. We understand how challenging family law issues can be for you, which is why we will fight hard to protect your interests, and the interests of your loved ones, throughout the legal process. Call us at (856) 251-0800 or fill out our confidential contact form to schedule a consultation. We have an office conveniently located at 750 Cooper Street, Woodbury, NJ 08096.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.

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