Helping Individuals Establish a Living Will in the St. Louis Metropolitan Area and throughout Missouri and Illinois
Living wills provide doctors and family members a statement of your intentions regarding medical care under certain circumstances. Living wills typically direct that treatment is to be stopped when death is inevitable or imminent and when the treatment will not significantly delay death from occurring. A living will informs your doctor of your wishes ahead of time because often patients near the end of their lives are no longer able make or communicate treatment decisions.
A living will only come into play when death will occur within a short period of time even if treatment is provided.
It is important to note that living wills only apply to a narrow set of health conditions. If you find that you want to leave more specific instructions for a wider range of possible medical situations, you likely will need to sign a Durable Power of Attorney For Healthcare which is a more detailed type of an advanced health care directive.
Requirements of a Living Will
In Missouri, there is standard language that is to be used to create a living will. Like a last will and testament, you must sign it and date it, and it must be signed by two witnesses, who are not related to you and are not beneficiaries in your will. Only adults (aged 18 and over) may sign a living will.
If the Living Will is intended to include denial or withdrawal of artificial (intravenous or tube) nutrition and hydration or breathing the intention must be specifically stated in the Living Will.
Considerations After Signing a Living Will
After you sign a living will, it is critical that you keep it in a place where you or trusted family members can access it. We recommend giving a copy to your doctor and telling close relatives you have a living will in place. A living will should not be kept only in a safety deposit box where it cannot be read when you need it. Many people travel with this document.
Contact an Experienced St. Louis Living Wills Attorney
A living will should be made while you are in good health. In order for a living will to go unquestioned, it should not be made shortly before a surgery or while you are in declining health. At Kilo Flynn we believe these decisions should be made without pressure and on your timeline.
We work with clients throughout the Missouri and Illinois, including the City of St. Louis, and the surrounding Missouri counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Lincoln, Jefferson, Franklin and Crawford; and the Illinois counties of Madison, St. Clair and Monroe, to name a few. To schedule a consultation to talk about your end-of-life planning options, call our firm at 314-647-8910.