Manhattan’s Trusted Estate Planning And Litigation Attorney For More Than 40 Years

  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Estate Planning
  4.  » Making wishes clear is key with a health care proxy

Making wishes clear is key with a health care proxy

On Behalf of | Jul 18, 2023 | Estate Planning

When New Yorkers think about estate planning, they might automatically focus on wills or trusts. However, there are other aspects of estate planning that can also be important. For people who are concerned about what will happen if they are unable to make health care decisions on their own, a health care proxy can be useful.

A critical part of a health care proxy is detailing wishes for care

There are facts about a health care proxy that people should know about beforehand. The person who has a health care proxy names an agent who will make decisions in their stead. Medical professionals who would otherwise need a person’s permission to provide care will instead go to the health care agent.

When selecting an agent, the person should make sure to understand the document and make their wishes clear. The agent should be told what the person wants. It should be someone reliable and trustworthy to act in their best interests.

The type of care the person will get can vary. For example, if they need life support like a respirator to stay alive, the agent must know whether the person wants that or not. It can apply to treatments and being given artificial nutrition as well.

This is a major decision and the agent should be fully informed how the person feels. The agent cannot overrule a person’s stated wishes and make changes to the treatment decisions and protocol on their own. Having someone who will do as they are asked and not adhere to personal beliefs is essential.

People need to know the facts about a health care proxy and estate planning

Simply having an estate plan and a health care proxy is a good idea to be fully protected, but it is also vital to know the details as to what the document does. It is a major responsibility to serve as someone’s health care agent and it is imperative to ensure they know what the person wants and can be trusted to adhere to their wishes. When crafting the document, it is wise to understand all the legal ramifications and to have advice.