Living Wills Attorney in Denver, CO
One of the most important estate planning decisions an individual could make are the living wills. Living wills along with power of attorney for healthcare are healthcare directives that indicate what procedures you want done upon you in events of illness. These documents give your family a clear picture of medical procedures you want done and naming the individual you trust to carry on your last wishes in case you are incapacitated.
If living wills meet legal requirements, they are legally valid and binding. There are two main goals that living wills achieve, namely: informing family members of the kind of treatment you want and don’t want and provision of notice of intentions to avoid uncertainty in the future. Living wills reduce the likelihood of disputes over medical care.
Many people often associate living wills with being incapable and this is the reason why most steer clear of this subject, giving rise to several squabbles amongst family members. In fact, recent surveys showed that only 42% of Americans created a living will..
If you’re uncertain about the creation of a living will, it is wise to get in touch with a Denver, CO living wills attorney. A living wills attorney can help you draft your will and explain the process to you in order to eliminate any sort of confusion. Provide your loved ones with clarity in order for them to have more time honoring your legacy.
What is a Living Will?
Planning ahead for your estate is one of the best steps you could take not just for you but for your loved ones, too. It can be troublesome to dictate your last wishes should you become incapacitated due to illness or accident, which is why living wills are an essential estate planning tool.
There are two kinds of health care documents: living wills and powers of attorney for healthcare. Living wills are written statements that entail that type of medical treatment you want and don’t want to receive. Living wills are different from living trusts or the typical wills used upon death.
Powers of attorney for health care, on the other hand, requires you to appoint a trusted individual to be your health care agent or attorney-in-fact for healthcare. This individual is responsible for making big decisions regarding your health care based on the kind of care that you prefer to receive. Other names for a health care agent include health care proxy and surrogate.
Are you seeking to draft your living will? Enlist the help of a Denver, CO living wills attorney. A living wills attorney can help you draft and review your living will in order to make estate planning possible for you and make honoring your legacy a pleasant experience for your loved ones.
How Old Do I Have To Be To Draft a Living Will?
There is a misconception that one needs to be old and on their deathbed to draft a living will. Preparation is always better. An individual needs to be at least 18 years old to make this valid document regarding health directives. One must also be of sound mind and able to fully comprehend what the document entails. If you are planning to draft your living will at this age, it would be better to enlist the help of a Denver, CO living will attorney who can explain health care directives to you in a way that you can better understand.
When Do Living Wills Take Effect?
It’s already been established that living wills are different from living trusts or conventional wills which take effect after the individual’s death. Health care directives on the other hand are an entirely different story. The physician indicates if you are incapacited or do not have the capability to understand the consequences of health care choices and you are incapable of communicating your wishes.
Some states permit immediate granting of health care directives to health care agents, meaning you can immediately create this document for your agent to act upon it instantly without needing a physician’s intervention. However, this doesn’t mean that your agent can just do whatever they want. You still have full control of the directive and the agent must always ensure that it is acted upon with your best interests in mind.
How Do Living Will Documents End?
For as long as you are alive, your living will is in effect. The only thing that would cause the documents to end is if you revoke it or through court intervention. If you revoke your document, ensure that your health care agent and health care providers are aware of this move.
Should the court invalidate your documents due to any disputes such as doubting that you are truly incapable, it is upon you to prove that you are indeed incapable of making sound decisions over your health. Your living will can also be terminated if the court revokes it because your agent is not able to carry out your wishes accordingly.
Divorce is also a reason for living will documents to come to an end if the spouse is named as the health care agent with an alternate agent taking over, if you’ve named one. Lastly, living will documents end when you die. In some cases, however, the living will still take effect for limited purposes such as your agent supervising an autopsy.
What are the Living Wills Laws in Colorado?
Living will laws vary from state to state which is why before drafting one, it is important to take note of your state’s particular set of rules. In Colorado, a health care declaration requires two witnesses. However, a medical durable power of attorney does not require any witnesses. If you are from Colorado and are seeking to draft a living will, get legal assistance from a living wills attorney from the state who can help you draft and review the living will.
What Is the Difference Between Living Will and Living Trust?
Both of these are documents and concepts used under the practice of estate planning but as alike as we think they are, they are distinct from one another. To narrow it down, a living will state your end of life health decisions if you are incapable of doing so yourself while a living trust enables you to appoint a trustee to manage your estates. Living wills become null and void upon your demise while living trusts can distribute the assets after you’ve died.
Seek Legal Advice from Living Wills Attorneys
Don’t wait til your old age to plan for your future. Life is unpredictable and it is best to stay ready. If you are of legal age and are seeking to make the future easier for both you and your loved ones, contact Dray Legal to schedule a consultation with a Colorado living wills attorney who can help you draft and review your will along with walking you through the process. The future doesn’t have to be grim and complicated. With proper estate planning, you can leave your loved ones with the time to celebrate your legacy without any stress. Schedule an appointment with Dray Legal now!