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The ins and outs of a living will

It's easy to believe that a living will and a traditional will are one in the same. However, as you learn more about both, you'll come to find that nothing could be further from the truth.

A living will, also known as a health care directive, is a legal document that outlines the type of medical treatment you want to receive in the event that you are unable to communicate your desires as the result of a serious injury or illness.

Although a living will is allowed in all 50 states, you need to learn more about the specific laws in your state. You don't want to make a mistake that could make it invalid at some point in the future.

What does a living will cover?

There is no simple answer to this question, as no two living wills are exactly the same.

Many people believe the myth that a living will is only meant to tell medical providers when they should withhold treatment. While this is possible, you can also include instructions regarding a variety of medical techniques and treatment options.

Since there is so much to think about when creating a living will, you'll want to consult with a knowledgeable health care professional. This person can answer your questions and help you decide which decisions make the most sense for someone in your position.

A living will does not go into effect until a medical team determines that you are terminally ill or in a permanent vegetative state. If you are still able to speak for yourself, your living will remains inactive.

There is a lot to think about when creating a living will. Since you need to make big decisions regarding your health, you should never rush through the process. You need to answer all the necessary questions, understand your legal rights, and then move forward as you best see fit. The decisions you make when creating a living will could impact your life in the future, so you need to be careful of what you're doing.

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