The basics of creating a living will
A working living will is made of two parts. One part specifies your wishes and another part specifies a proxy (often called a “durable power of attorney”) to represent you and see to it that your wishes are honored. In some states, these two parts are unified in one document. In other states, separate documents outline your wishes and name your healthcare proxy.
This may sound complicated, but fortunately all the resources you need to complete a valid living will are freely available online from nonprofit websites that offer free, state-specific living wills that you can download. Such sites include:
Make sure that you carefully follow the instructions. A living will that is not completed correctly will not necessarily be honored. For example, in some cases living wills may need to be witnessed or notarized. Also make sure to file your living will with the correct local authority.
Finally, be aware that because living wills are state specific, anyone who moves to another state ought to complete a new living will.
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