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Incorporating end-of-life care concerns into your estate plan

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2024 | Estate Planning & Elder Law |

Planning for end-of-life care is a critical aspect of estate planning. This is an opportunity to better ensure that your wishes are respected and to reduce the burden on your loved ones during a difficult time.

In Ohio, integrating end-of-life care into your estate plan involves several key components, including the living will and a power of attorney. Understanding these resources enables Ohio residents to effectively plan for their end-of-life care as part of their broader estate planning efforts.

Understanding Ohio’s advance directives

Advance directives are legal documents that detail your wishes regarding medical treatment and end-of-life care. In Ohio, the two primary forms of advance directives are the living will and the health care power of attorney.

A living will comes into effect if you’re terminally ill or permanently unconscious and unable to make medical decisions for yourself. It specifies the types of life-sustaining treatments you do or don’t want.

A power of attorney allows you to appoint a trusted person to make healthcare decisions on your behalf if you can’t do so. This individual, known as your health care agent, will have the authority to make decisions that align with your preferences and values, as expressed in your living will or through other communications.

Incorporating end-of-life plans into your estate documents

While advance directives address your healthcare preferences, integrating your end-of-life care plans into your broader estate plan is also important. This can include specifying how you wish to allocate resources for your care, designating guardians if necessary and outlining funeral or memorial preferences.

Documenting your end-of-life care in your estate plan is critical because it lets your loved ones know exactly what to do on your behalf. With that said, it may benefit you to discuss your wishes with a legal representative who can help you to get everything together in ways that are articulate and enforceable. Once this is done, you should discuss those wishes with your family members so they can ask you questions if they have any. It’s best to get this done as soon as possible so you have peace of mind about what will happen if you can no longer speak up for yourself.


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