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Estate Planning | Elder Law | Special Needs Planning

CONSIDERATIONS IN DESIGNATING A HEALTH CARE PROXY

CONSIDERATIONS IN DESIGNATING A HEALTH CARE PROXY

One of the most important decisions that you will ever make is who you should appoint to make your health care decisions when you are no longer able to do so. The designation is made in a Health Care Proxy document. Most people instinctually think that they should name a spouse or family member. That is often the best person to appoint. However, there are other things to consider.

The person that you appoint needs to be able to effectively communicate with doctors and other medical personnel what your wishes are. That means that he or she must not only be able to express your wishes, he or she must know what they are. Some people are not comfortable talking about important health care decisions long before they need to be made. It can be uncomfortable for family members sometimes, but you need to be able to talk to the person you designate about what you want.

You also need to take care to appoint someone who is available to communicate with doctors and who you anticipate will be available long into the future. Hopefully, you will not need the Health Care Proxy for years to come so it does not make sense to designate someone in it who may not be around when you do need it.

Who you designate is up to you. Talk to your attorney about who the right person is for your situation.

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