Most people prefer to not think about death, but the unfortunate truth is that injuries, illnesses and accidents can affect anyone. It is important for Ohio residents to have a plan for how to be treated if they are unable to make their own decisions, no matter how young, healthy and safety-conscious they might be. This is a where a living will, which is also known as an advanced directive, may be helpful.

A living will is a legal document that contains a set of instructions regarding how an individual wants to be treated if he or she is incapacitated without any chance of revival. Before a living will goes into effect, two doctors have to establish that the patient is no longer able to make their own decisions.

Without a living will, it is up to family members to decide what to do with an incapacitated individual, and there is a good chance they will not all agree on what this person thought about end-of-life care. This can lead to a host of problems, such as costly medical bills from being left on life support for an extended period of time, negative emotions and difficult decision-making.

Living wills may be established with help from an estate planning lawyer. Getting assistance from a lawyer in order to complete a living will may be a wise decision because it may give individuals peace of mind. Furthermore, a lawyer may be able to help an individual prepare other estate planning documents. For example, that lawyer could help set up a power of attorney, draft a will or establish a trust.

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