Estate planning is a beneficial step for all South Carolina residents. Having appropriate plans in place is a good idea for everyone, regardless of income level and assets. If you do not have an estate plan or you have not updated yours in a long time, you may consider the benefits of adding a health care power of attorney.
For some, estate planning is about more than just drafting a will. You would be wise to consider the benefits of other estate planning tools, including those that offer you the opportunity to plan for your medical care in the future. A health care power of attorney can allow you to have more control over what will happen to you in case of incapacitation that prevents you from making decisions and expressing your wishes.
What does it include?
A health care power of attorney allows you to name one person to act on your behalf in case you are ever unable to speak for yourself. Some of the decisions that this person may have to make for you include:
- Whether or not doctors can place you on life support
- What kind of treatments you should receive
- Palliative care and other end-of-life health care decisions
Often people use health care powers of attorney in conjunction with a living will. This type of estate planning tool allows you to outline the specific things you do or do not want as medical treatment. However, having a health care power of attorney can be particularly beneficial if your living will is very general. The person you decide to act on your behalf will make decisions not specified in your living will.
The measures you need to fully protect your interests generally depend on your goals, your needs and your state of health. Having the right plans in place can give you peace of mind as you look toward the future.
Estate planning is for everyone
Even if you are in perfect health, you may benefit from the protections and security provided by a health care power of attorney. These are important decisions, and you would benefit from speaking with a medical professional in order to understand the implications of your choices.
It can also be helpful to seek an evaluation of your case to learn more about your specific options and how you can develop a complete estate plan that suits your needs and objectives.