Top 3 Must Have Legal Documents

April 3, 2017

1. Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care. This document allows you to name who you want to make health care decisions for you when you are unable to do so for yourself. (During surgery, if you have an incapacitating illness, are unconscious from an accident or traumatic incident)

2. Living Will. This documents stands on its own, in that it expresses your end-of-life treatment wishes to whatever health care provider (hospital, doctor, etc) reads it. You can state that you want all, some or no artificial means of maintaining your life (i.e., ventilator, CPR, dialysis, surgery, etc) when you are at the end of your life.

3. Financial Durable Power of Attorney. This documents allows you to appoint who you want to make financial decisions for you (pay bills, enter into contracts for goods and services for you, handle your insurance and all assets you own) if you are determined by your doctor to be unable to handle your financial decisions yourself. VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: Choose a person who is financially secure and responsible to serve in this role. It is very tempting to someone who is not financially stable to dip into your money (“I am just borrowing this money – I’ll pay it back) at a time when every cent should be used for your care.

Information provided by Eldercare Matters