All In the Lingo – Living Will, Durable Power of Attorney and Other Legal Terms You Should Know
No one likes to talk about end-of-life decisions and wishes, it’s morbid and scary. But now is the time to talk about it with loved ones. The first step in having these discussions is understanding the legal lingo like “living will” and “durable power of attorney.”
Making Your Wishes Known – A Living Will
A living will is about making your medical wishes known. The living will provides your family with clear instructions. So that they are not forced to make them for you in the event of an emergency.
A Living Will by Any Other Name Flocks Together
A living will can also be called an advanced directive or healthcare directive. They may include information regarding an individual’s wishes for pain relief, life sustaining measures such as a feeding tube or the use a ventilator.
Living Wills and DNR’s
Another legal term you may hear quite often is “DNR” which stands for “Do Not Resuscitate.” This is a legal directive that is usually included in a living will. If someone signs a DNR, this tells medical professionals as well as family members that they do not want to any “heroic measures” to keep them alive should their heart stop.
Your Advocate – Durable Power Of Attorney
A durable power of attorney is a legal document in which you name the person you would like to be responsible for your medical care or finances (or both!) should you become incapacitated.
This person of your choosing would have the ability to carry out decisions for you from your living will and make medical decisions not covered in the scope of your living will. If given financial power of attorney, this person would also take care of paying your bills and managing your investments.
Needless to say, It’s important to choose someone you trust when it comes to selecting your Power of Attorney.
Senior LIFE Can Help Guide You
Prior to enrollment into the Senior LIFE program, our trained staff will discuss your medical options with you and your family. We will develop a plan of care that not only meets your current medical needs. But also discuss what would happen in the event that you could not make decisions for yourself and will encourage you to select an appropriate power of attorney.
Categories: Caregiver Resources