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Do I Need a Power of Attorney for Healthcare?

Posted on in Estate Planning

Beverly estate planning lawyerIf you are like most people, you may not fully consider issues affecting your health and medical care until it is too late. If an unforeseen accident or illness leaves you incapacitated and unable to make your own medical decisions, who will speak for you? A power of attorney for healthcare can ensure that your wishes are followed in the event that you are unable to communicate them yourself. With the help of an estate planning lawyer, you can make sure your needs will be met, no matter what happens in the future.

Benefits of a Medical Power of Attorney

When you create a power of attorney agreement, you will name a person who will be authorized to make certain types of decisions for you. This person is known as your “agent,” and they can be anyone who is over the age of 18 and who you trust to act in your best interests. If necessary, you can also name one or more successor agents who will be able to make decisions for you in the event that the first person you choose as your agent is unavailable or unwilling to serve in this capacity.

A power of attorney for healthcare will grant your agent the authority to make multiple types of decisions related to your health, welfare, and medical care. They will generally be able to decide the types of treatments you will receive and whether certain treatments may be declined or withdrawn. These may include decisions that affect life-saving, life-sustaining, or end-of-life care. Your agent may be allowed to decide whether you will be admitted to a hospital, mental health facility, or assisted living facility. They will also have access to your medical records and medical history. While your agent’s decisions will generally be related to the care you receive during your life, they may also carry out your wishes regarding the disposition of your remains, including making arrangements for organ donation, performing an autopsy, and burial or cremation.

To ensure that your wishes will be followed correctly, you can specify exactly what types of decisions your agent will or will not be able to make, and you can provide instructions for what types of care and treatment you do or do not want to receive. These may include instructions about whether you want to receive life-sustaining care or whether you want the treatment you receive to be limited to providing for your comfort and well-being rather than prolonging your life. Generally, your agent will only be allowed to take action on your behalf when you are unable to make decisions on your own. 

Contact Our Chicago Healthcare Power of Attorney Lawyer

A power of attorney for healthcare can provide you with peace of mind that your needs will be attended to and your wishes will be followed if you ever become incapacitated. When creating a power of attorney agreement, it is important to discuss these issues with the person you choose as your agent. By working with a skilled estate planning lawyer, you can make sure your agreement is legally sound and fully addresses all of the situations in which you may need someone to make medical decisions on your behalf. The Marques Eason Law Group can help you understand your options, and we will work with you to create a comprehensive estate plan that will meet your needs. Contact our Beverly estate planning attorney today at 312-973-3755 to get started.

Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs5.asp?ActID=2113&ChapterID=60

https://dph.illinois.gov/content/dam/soi/en/web/idph/files/forms/powerofattorneyhealthcareform.pdf

Illinois State Bar Association Gate City Bar Association Cook County Bar Association Will County Bar Association
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